There were approximately 52 Adams-Farwell cars made and this 1906 model is the only one known to exist. It has an air-cooled 5-cylinder rotary engine and provides its driver with the choice of mounting the steering position at the front, offering more passenger room, or at the rear, offering greater weather protection.
The Adams-Farwell Company of Dubuque, Iowa produced automobiles from 1905 through 1913. Herbert and Eugene Adams founded the company in 1883 for the purpose of producing park benches and grave markets. Their business evolved over the years to include milling and general foundry equipment.
Fay Oliver Farwell joined the company as a superintendent prior to the 1900s. With the growing popularity of the internal combustion engine, Farwell began its own experimentation. In 1898 he installed a three-cylinder engine in an express wagon. His subsequent motorcars had rear-engine vehicles.
At the Chicago Automobile Show in February of 1905, Farwell's Model 5 prototype was on display, after which the company began receiving orders for production.
The Model 6 of the 1905 was powered by a three-cylinder engine and had an 84-inch wheelbase. The following year, the size grew to 90 inches for the Model 6 and was available with either a three- or five-cylinder engine. Bodystyles included a tourer, landaulet, or a Brougham. Other 1906 models included the model 7A, and 8A. Both were powered by the 40 horsepower, five-cylinder engine. The 7A had a large 108 inch wheelbase which held a seven-passenger tourer while the Model 8A was an 86-inch gentleman's speed runabout. This sporting vehicle had an impressive top speed of 75 mph, thanks in-part to its setup. It was an early example of unit body construction, and thus, did not have a frame.
The Adams-Farwell continued to produce automobiles until 1913. By this point in history, Herbert and Euqene saw a brighter future for their company in the gear-cutting business. Fay Farwell stayed with the company until the early 1920s.
By Daniel Vaughan | Sep 2011