Hershey

11-12 October 2012

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Lot 283

1915 Stanley Model 820 Mountain Wagon

  • Chassis no. 15055

$200,000 - $250,000


30 hp, two-cylinder double-acting steam engine, solid front axle with semi-elliptic leaf spring suspension in the front and rear, and rear drum brakes. Wheelbase: 136 in.

• Ex-James Melton and Thomas C. Marshall
• The only Model 820 with its original Stanley-built body
• Extraordinary patina and authenticity

Chassis 15055 has been well-known in Stanley circles since World War II. It was owned by popular tenor and personality James Melton from approximately 1944 to 1952, when he sold a number of vehicles from his collection of approximately 150 cars. Melton was an important early collector from Connecticut who was responsible for saving a number of significant early cars. In a copy of the Melton Museum brochure, graciously provided by his daughter Margo, Melton comments on the Mountain Wagon, “In the early days, these vehicles were used in Estes Park and Yellowstone National Park for sightseeing tours, hence the name Mountain Wagon. It has the 30 hp engine and boiler with a very low gear ratio… [it] will scale any wall, and carries 12 passengers. Just the thing for meeting the train from New York when we have a large party.” Melton enthusiastically drove many of his vehicles, and it is quite believable that the Stanley was used by him, just as described.

The next owner of the Stanley was Thomas Clarence Marshall, a Stanley dealer in Yorklyn, Delaware, from 1910 into the late teens. In 1940, he thought he'd like to tinker with a Stanley again and tracked down one of the cars he had sold, a 1913 Model 76, and found it still with the original purchaser. Marshall bought it back and began collecting Stanleys and other steamers, at one point amassing the largest collection of Stanleys in existence! The remainder of his collection now forms the basis of the Marshall Steam Museum. Subsequent owners include Robert M. Chambers, followed by Harry Resnick of Ellenville, New York, where it was displayed at the Harry Resnick Motor Museum, which was dissolved in the 1970s; it was later displayed for some time at the Larz Anderson Auto Museum.

In addition to having a very long-term, known, significant ownership history, chassis 15055 has the distinction of being the only Model 820 to retain its original Stanley-built body. A very good older restoration, it appears to remain correct in all respects and has been recently serviced by Alan Kelso, of Steaman Inc. The work performed included the installation of a new 30 horsepower baker burner and the service and repair of the pilot. The fuel tanks were removed and cleaned, in addition to the installation of new pressure bottles. All pumps and valves were checked, renewed, and repacked. The chassis is also reported to be excellent and solid, as are the wheels, which are tight and solid. This Stanley Mountain Wagon has an extraordinary patina, which has been appreciated by owners of vehicles of this vintage for generations. It has spent most of the last six decades in a small handful of private museums and collections. Recently serviced, cleaned, and detailed, it is ready to continue being displayed as a historic piece of Stanley history, or perhaps pressed back into use the way James Melton would have advised over half a century ago.

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alexander Weaver

aweaver@rmsothebys.com

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

asabatie-garat@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

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+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 9... read more

Cameron Smyth

csmyth@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Cameron Smyth joined RM Sotheby’s as a Car Specialist in 2015, working out of our corporate office and providing assistance on c... read more

David Swig

dswig@rmsothebys.com

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

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+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

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+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

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+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Ian Kelleher

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+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Ian Kelleher began his automotive career immediately following his graduation from Oberlin College with a Bachelor of Arts in Politica... read more

Jake Auerbach

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+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry

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+1 717 623 1638
California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

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+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

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+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

mfairbairn@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

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+44 (0) 75 0110 7447
United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

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+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

pfisher@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. He att... read more

Peter Wallman

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+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Peter Wallman joined RM Europe in 2007 following nearly two decades in the international advertising industry, where he was based out ... read more

Shelby Myers

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+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

tvandervelden@rmsothebys.com

+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more