This is the forth post in a series covering the automobiles that Peter Christian Wick operated during his career as a professional chauffeur; he drove in the New York City and Ridgefield, Connecticut areas in the early 1900s. This set of photos show two different Delaunay-Belleville cars, and he drove at least one of them for Mr. Albert H. Wiggin, who was the chairman of the Chase Bank.
The Delaunay-Belleville in the photo above and the three images below was an impressive and large French car that was most likely powered by a six-cylinder engine and may have been chain-driven. The coachwork the chassis is wearing is what we would refer to as a collapsible town car. It offered the comfort of being enclosed, but with the top down and the side and division windows removed it offered the benefits of an open car during pleasant weather.
The left-hand photo above shows Wick’s wife posing in the car with what appears to be the Sleeping Giant, which is located in central Connecticut, behind her. The center photo shows the car along with the Wiggin’s Fiat in front of the carriage house, which may have also served as living quarters for Wick and the other domestic help. The right-hand image shows a group of chauffeur’s posing with the car. Note the car being washed in the background and the man sitting just behind the front fender with what appears to be a broken arm.
The car Wick is posing in below may not have been owned by Mr. Wiggin as it has been identified as wearing a manufacturer’s license plate from New York. This car is likely to be the smaller four-cylinder model; note the low windshield, the continental-style mounting of the headlamps and the patent leather fenders.
The Wick family has discovered that in 1908 Peter was in Cupid’s Pranks, a 1908 Thomas Edison silent film, in it he can be seen between the 6:40-minute mark and 8:15 operating a limousine. If you can identify the maker of the car in the film, please let us know. You can look back here and see the White Steam cars, a Fiat and a Rainier he also drove in earlier posts here on The Old Motor.