| || |
First of all, I think each of you should be thankful that your parents didn’t name you “Cadwallader.” For any of you that MAY be named Cadwallader, I apologize for that comment.
While at the Hershey Car Show in October, one of the first cars that I laid my eyes on was this 1911 Kelsey Motorette. I had never heard of it let alone seen one, so my curiosity led me straight to it.
The car was built in Hartford, Conn., by the C.W. Kelsey Manufacturing Co. Cadwallader Washburn Kelsey went by “Carl” (I would too if my name was Cadwallader). He built his first car in 1897, before entering college, and his second car while an undergraduate at Haverford College.
After college he became a dealer for Maxwell automobiles and eventually became head sales manager after building his dealership into Maxwell’s most successful one in the country.
After leaving Maxwell, Carl returned to his first love, which was designing and building cars. He started building the Kelsey Motorette and built some 200-plus of the unique cars over three years.
The Motorette was powered by a 10-horsepower, opposing two-cylinder liquid-cooled engine and utilized a two-speed planetary transmission with a reverse gear. The power then went to the single rear wheel by chain drive. The car was steered by a tiller (handle) on the right side of the passenger compartment. This particular car came with the optional convertible top.
The vehicle also featured a circulatory oil lubrication system as opposed to a full-loss oiling system, which was rather common in 1911.
It sure looked like something that would be fun to crank up (literally hand crank) and take for a spin!
Until next week, keep on cruising!
Car Nutz Contributors
Big Dan Pfeiffer