1904 was Rambler's first year of 2 cylinder cars, manufactured by the 'Jeffery Co. in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
This vehicle carried an original price of $1350.00. There were 2342 1 and 2 cylinder units produced in 1904. The throttle wheel is located under the steering wheel. It has the original IL. license plate #800 on dash. The original owner took a train to the factory and drove this vehicle home. It was in his car until 1950. This is car # 4050 and has mechanical valves and dual carburetors.
A Rambler won the Minneapolis MN annual hill climb on June 11, 2004.
Mr. Miller contacted the 2nd owner in 1972 asking if it was for sale. The answer was 'No'. Mr. Miller then contacted the 3rd owner in 2001 asking if it was for sale. It took an additional 5.5 years until it would end up in Mr. Miller's care.
In 1904, Milton Stocking of Lindewood, Illinois, traveled 100 miles by train to the Thomas Jeffrey Company, in Kenosha, Wisconsin, to take delivery of his new Rambler. He rather liked his choice, and it was with him until his passing in 1950. Each future owner has been carefully scrutinized and the current owner is just the fourth.
The engine is rated at 16-20 horsepower, and has two cylinders, two carburetors and overhead mechanical valves. It has been up to 40 mph and cruises comfortably at 30. The car rides on an 84-inch wheelbase and the coachwork is a 'Rear Entrance Canopy Tonneau' style. The car stands 7-feet 2 inches and cost $1,350 new.
The throttle ring below the steering wheel controls the mixture of the two carburetors. It was reported in 1904 that this system of throttling was so convenient and easy that two one-armed men owned and operated these cars.
The Chicago based Rambler Company was owned and operated by Thomas B. Jeffery and R. Philip Gormully. Like many early automobile manufacturers, their specialty had been in the manufacturing of bicycles. The Rambler Company was one of the very first automobile producers with their first automobile produced in 1897. Thomas Jeffery and his son Charles were responsible for the inspiration and creation of the Rambler automobile. The first Rambler was a single-cylinder vehicle with wire-spoke wheels that did not receive much attention from the public. A year later Charles had created two more machines, both still passing mostly unnoticed from the motoring community. In 1900 the Jefferys brought their creations to the Chicago and New York auto show where they finally received attention. Gormully had since passed away so the Jeffery's sold their bicycling business to the American Bicycle Company to focus on the production of automobiles.
The 1902 Rambler Model C Runabout was truly a horseless carriage, with its design inspired from the carriages of its day. The 1902 Model C did not have a steering wheel; rather a steering lever was used to point the vehicle in the intended direction. By 1904, Rambler had equipped their vehicles with a steering wheel. Powered by a single cylinder engine, the horsepower was low, but adequate. By 1904, the figures had been improved greatly. The price to own a 1902 Model C was $750, a figure that was fair at the time. Production from the Kenosha, Wisconsin factories was respectable in 1902, with a total production of about 1500 Model C Runabouts. This made the Rambler company one of the largest automobile producers in the world at the time.
By Daniel Vaughan | Nov 2007