1909 Glidden Tour - Indianapolis Star

The following articles are collectively coverage of the 1909 Glidden Tour published in the Indianapolis Star. For additional coverage check out articles from the rival Indianaolis News as well as an image portfolio elsewhere on First Super Speedway. You can also see reference articles from the 1907 and 1908 Glidden Tours on this site.
Attachment Glidden071209 was published in the Indianapolis Star the morning of July 12, 1909 - the day the tour started. Written by the great Indianapolis automotive journalist Peter Paul "P.P." Willis, the article captures the setting of the event's launch in Detroit. The entrants would each compete for one of three trophies: the Glidden, the Hower or the Detroit. Willis reported confusion over the exact number of entrants although he suggests the number was 31 with an additional 20 or so vehicles traveling in support.
In the days leading up to the start of the contests those involved were entertained by the organizers, the crescendo being a boat excursion to Lake St. Clair. In the meantime veteran driver and engineer Joe Tracy of Vanderbilt Cup fame led technical inspection. The contests were to conclude in Kansas City. The first stop was Kalamazoo, Michigan. The point of departure in Detroit was the Cadillac Square near the Pontchartrain Hotel. There, in the hotel lobby, American Automobile Association (AAA) Contest Board Chairman Frank Hower used a megaphone in a meeting of competitors to explain event rules. Baggage was shipped via rail to Minneapolis where the tours expected to be in a week.
The "trailblazer" car was an E.M.F. with driver Dan Lewis at the wheel. Also called the "confetti car," this lead vehicle littered the roadway with confetti so that the parade of competitor could easily see the road path they were expected to take. Among the competitors one of the most interesting was Walter White's kerosene-buring White automobile. Mr. White, a part-time driver, was recoverning from injuries suffered at a Cincinnati hill climb a year earlier.
Throughout the Midwest there was much excitement as previous Glidden Tours had been staged further east such as Pennsylvania and New York the previous year. "The Westerners" were eager to prove they deserved the honor of hosting despite their suspect roads with a reputation for underdevelopment. The community of chambers of commerce and local auto clubs planned celebrations at each check point and all along the roadways. Some manufacturers had complained that previous tours had been too lenient in issuing penalties and so part of Hower's hotel lobby explanation mentioned above was to stress that people receiving penalties should not be discouraged as the scrutiny would be more critical than in years past. To this point he said:
"The rules are much more exacting. The tour is not to be a wild flight across country, with cars being rebuilt, and no record made of their troubles. The cars will carry obserers and travel so closely together that there will be no chance of anyone changing a bolt without it being known, to say nothing of putting in a new axle of spring. It will be no disgrace for a car to be penalized under the 1909 rules, and it will be a distinct triumph for all how get through with high scores."
The article notes that the buzz about the 1909 event was the the tours would start in Indianapolis the next year in 1910. There were several reasons Indianapolis was attractive to the Glidden Tour organizers but not the least of which was the new Indianapolis Motor Speedway which was in the process of finishing its construction at the time this article was published. It was noted as ideal for not only parking the participating cars and garaging them but also staging races as part of the entertainment for pre-tour days. Night races were also noted as well as the capacity of the Hoosier capital to house and entertain convention guests.
Building on the Aero Club of America successful 1909 national championship balloon races ascensions of the giant gas bags were also discussed as part of the pre-race festivities. Russe J. Irvin, the assistant to Dr. Goethe Link, the winners of the handicap trophy of that event. Irvin was riding in a Marmon vehicle and serving as an inspector in the tour.
The plan called for a 10 AM start, ignited by a blast from an historic Civil War cannon at Cadillac Square. Cars were released in one minute intervals into a punishing fray that was 1,000 miles longer than any of its five predecessors. There were 13 touring cars in the Glidden Tour, 14 runabouts in the Hower Tour and three miniature tonneau and double rumble cars in the Detroit Tour.
The city stops along the tour, in order, were:

  1. Kalamazoo, Michigan
  2. Chicago
  3. Madion, Wisconsin
  4. La Crosse, Wisconsin
  5. Minneapolis
  6. Mankato, Minnesota
  7. Ft. Dodge, Iowa
  8. Council Bluffs, Iowa
  9. Kearney, Nebraska
  10. Julesburg, Colorado
  11. Denver
  12. Hugo, Colorado
  13. Oakley, Kansas
  14. Salina, Kansas
  15. Kansas City

Attachment Glidden071309, published in the July 13, 1909 Indianapolis Star discusses the events of the first day of the 1909 Glidden Tour which stopped in Kalamazoo for the evening. The distance was 143 miles a journey over roads much of which were unrecognizable by today's standards and organizers had allotted seven hours and 10 minutes to traverse. Seven cars were reported to incur penalties, six for mechanical maladies. The marques were two Brush cars, one Chalmers-Detroit, a McIntyre, Premier, White steamer and Moline. The last three listed were tire failures. The two Brushes had serious engine problems, one breaking a connecting rod, the other replacing a rod bearing. The Chalmers fixed a fender. The McIntyre did not report mechanical issues but was penalized for arriving 40 minutes late. There was no apparent mechanical failure and the report indicates the machine simply could not sustain the required pace. Despite these difficulties all entries had survived the day and were expected to make the run to Chicago the following morning.
The cars were parked along Kalamazoo's Church Street under police vigil and near the traveling show's official headquarters for the evening, the Burdick Hotel. This was a masterpiece of the city but was destined to be consumed by fire just five months later.
While the article reports the "entire city" of Kalamazoo turned out to greet the arrivals there was no other extraordinary ceremony. The competitors looked ahead to the following day's trip to Chicago with a planned 7 AM start. The AAA's Frank Hower held an hour-long competitor's meeting to explain plans for the following day. Apparently there was a strict no speeding zone approaching Chicago and all drivers were expected to abide by local regulations. A telegram had arrived from Charles P. Root, president of the Chicago Auto Club informing the tour organizers that a reception was planned for them the following evening in the city's Southern Hotel. Root had just weeks earlier served as clerk of course at the Cobe Trophy race weekend and would later serve as starter of the 1913 Indianapolis 500.
An interesting historical note is worth calling out with respect to the next day's route which would spend time in northern Indiana and pass through South Bend, the home of Studebaker. E.M.F. and Studebaker had formed a strategic alliance which was starting to unravel with disagreements between the two company's executives. Studebaker, which had been a wagon and coach builder had coveted the auto business but believed the agreement with E.M.F. would allow them a low risk market entry as well as provide technical expertise. Studebaker had a network of distributors they could employ to market the product. In May two of the top E.M.F. executives had cashed in their positions and Studebaker, who would eventually buy out E.M.F., was exercising more influence. The smaller cars were being re-branded as Studebaker-E.M.F. while the larger cars were Studebaker-Garfords. A lunch stop at the South Bend Studebaker plant was planned.
At the hotels in Kalamazoo that evening telegraph companies set up special tables with a total of 40 operators to service the 75 newspapermen traveling with the caravan of autos. This was their electronic lifeline to the newspapers across the country that employed them. They had much to write about as the day's events unfolded with the Civil War era cannon blast ignited by Detroit Mayor Philip Breitmeyer and the field of intrepid adventurers, many carrying newspapermen to chronicle their adventure, set forward. Actually, one car had a two hour head start. That was the E.M.F. "confetti car" noted above as driver Dan (sometimes referred to as "Dai" in other reports) Lewis and his companions busily scattered their trail-marking litter.
In addition to the mayor's cannon three bands inserted their musical tones among the general buzz ranging from dead serious business discussions to the lighthearted giddiness of some who because of their connections, celebrity, special favors or various other reasons lost to the passage of time were simply there to be there. Regardless the scene was one of pomp and circumstance and pleasant weather too as light rains overnight had tamped down temperatures. The sun played hide-and-seek between clouds until noon when it burnt through to demonstrate it's skin-blistering intensity. By late afternoon, however, less playful clouds had amassed to seize control and excercised their will with a substantial dousing of drivers and passengers previously dusty from the formerly sun-baked dirt paths. Soon there was mud - and the cars would arrive in Chicago streaked with it.
Along the way though there was time before the rain for celebrations and cheers from onlookers still fascinated by such a collection of self-propelled vehicles. From countryside farmers to automotive towns the article reports greetings with open arms and none of the animosity so typical of the beginning of the decade. No place was more in evidence of enthusiasm than Jackson, Michigan already established as an automotive town with several marques in production as well as parts supply companies. So invested were its citizens, "every man, woman, child and dog lined the streets," that an anonymous contestant said, "Business is sure put on the bum in this village." It must have been something of a holiday and the generous population dispensed free food, machine lubricants and everything to eat "from chewing gum to watermelon." This is just a sense of the color and spirit of this article, which, incidentally was filed by the Star's Peter Paul Willis who was embedded in the tour. This stuff beats any book you'll find on this history.
Evidence the Glidden Tour was a rolling automotive convention of sorts come with the list of people occupying the cars. Some would stick out the entire two-week, 2,000+ mile journey others would make guest appearances for a link between cities. This article provides a wealth of names worthy of a Google search and I cull out those I recognize in this synopsis. Among those signing on for the trek from Kalamzoo to Chicago were the legendary auto racing starter of the day, Fred Wagner who waved the flags for just about everything from the Long Island Vanderbilt Cup races to the first Indianapolis 500. Others on that link were: Johnathon Dixon "J.D." Maxwell and Benjamin Briscoe (Briscoe-Maxwell Company); Samuel Miles, the general manager of the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers (NAAM); William Crapo Durant founder of General Motors; Alfred Reeves, general manager of the American Motor Car Manufacturers' Association; E. LeRoy Pelletier, who was Henry Ford's first advertising manager among many things (he was, at the time, with Studebaker); Horace De Lisser, president of the Ajax-Grieb Rubber Company; Harvey Firestone, founder of Firestone Tire & Rubber Company and Hugh Chalmers of Chalmers-Detroit.
There were some great names embedded in the tour for the long haul. I like to start with "J. Dawson" who would become the winner of the 1912 Indianapolis 500, Joe Dawson. Dawson was in the Marmon driven by Frank Wing. Wing had driven in previous endurance trials and was a highly respected driver. The Marmons got some attention because they were the only cars that utilized tops which undoubtedly served them well during the rain storm. Another noted Marmon employee and racer that participated was Harry "Sunshine" Stillman. Indiana Trophy winner Joe Matson was noted as a driver for Chalmers-Detroit. A former hot shoe was Webb Jay who in 1905 was a terror on the short dirt ovals with the famous White Company steam racer "Whistling Billy" until a near-fatal accident in August of that year. Jay drove a Premier, an Indianapolis entry, and this was the vehicle that Indianapolis Star reporter Peter Paul Willis was riding in. Other noteworthy figures of the day include: Edwin Ross Thomas of the Thomas Motor Company; H.O. Smith, the president of Premier Motor Car Manufacturing Company and journalist Ed Spooner who covered auto racing for a trade journals such as Horseless Age. As I noted above the list of names, typically four per car, was probably a who's who for automobiling in the day. On a lark I Googled at random a man named Jack Shimp who drove a Jewell automobile and again the Making of Modern Michigan Web site delivered a photograph. The point is if you wanted to take the time this excellent reference list could probably kick back quite a bit of historical information about the people behind this impressive list of names.
The attachment also includes a sidebar which is a quick digest of odds and ends. Among the choice notes:

  • Marmon cars had new straight axles and claimed extra strength.
  • The Jewell Company announced they could not improve its current car and would offer the same product in the coming year!
  • Pierce-Arrow announced their cars were available in 32 colors.
  • Detroit had issued a new tagline, "Life is worth living in Detroit."
  • The Indianapolis Motor Speedway's new Tiffany Wheeler-Schebler Trophy was on exhibition in Detroit in the week leading up to the start of the Glidden Tour.
  • Joe Matson's cup for winning the Indiana Trophy was on display at the Chalmers-Detroit headquarters.
  • Studebaker's E. Leroy Pellitier gave a banquet the previous night at Detroit's Lighthouse Inn.
  • George S. Wooley, manager of the Pontchartrain Hotel present Frank B. Hower with an American flag before he departed on his journey.

Attachment Glidden071409 contains a July 14, 1909 Indianapolis Star article that chronicles the leg of the Glidden Tour between Kalamazoo and Chicago. Much of that trek took place in northern Indiana and the quality of earth there was said to be uniquely fine powder. So talcum-like were the particulates that they could invade any space no matter how airtight such as the distance between a driver's cheeks and his goggles. Along the way they encountered what was reported to be among the worst and the best roads yet passed. Despite challenges the cars made good time and were reported to be for the most part ahead of schedule. Some encountered challenges and were assess commensurate demerits. These struggling competitors represented a sub-set of the same marques that met with exceptional adversity in the first day: Brush, Chalmers-Detroit and McIntyre.
The greetings along the way were muted compared to the first day as thin clusters of people ventured out to view along roadside. Leading the way was Dan Lewis in the EMF trailblazer car who had earned the nickname, "Confetti Lewis" as he drove the machine with passengers dispensing trail-marking confetti out the tonneau. Lewis and his crew arrived in Chicago well ahead of the pack. As the other "Gliddenites" appeared it was to a subdued greeting in a metropolois already choked with automobiles and beyond the novelty of self-propelled vehicles.
The Chicago Auto Club (CAC) did not let the arrival go unheralded. CAC President F.C. Donald and "Trade Association" (I assume this is an auto assocition perhaps local to Chicago) President Thomas J. Hay led a greeting parade of automobiles. Another local auto industry leader Frank Martin presented a "Dutch Luncheon" for the arrivals at the Southern Hotel. I assume "Dutch Lunch" means everyone picked up their own bill which seems incredibly cheap. For this and the generally low key greeting the CAC took heat from the Gliddenites. A quote from one of the competitors was:
"Chicago is the only city of importance on the route which has provided poor entertainment for the visitors, a habit which seems to be chronic with the Chicago Automobile Club, which never will be accused of any 'Coal Oil Johnny' methods of extravagance. Indeed, when it comes to entertainment, the CAC is about as generous as a brewer's contribution to a prohibition campaign."
Attachment Glidden071609 contains an article published in the July 16, 1909 Indianapolis Star that reports on the leg of the journey between the Wisconsin cities of Madison and LaCrosse. Called "low gear day" by the press the earmark of this stretch were miserable roads they hard press competitors to complete the trek within the seven hours, 40 minute scheduled time allotment. An excerpt from the article provides a brilliant description:
"Many times while trying to mount the steep, rock-bound hills, on roads that make the Adirondacks look like boulevards, the machines were stalled and had to be blocked with large rocks to keep them from runnin backward on the followers. It was a common sight to see three machines in a row, with occupants behind straining every muscle to heop get the struggling motor in control of the situation. The descents were more dangerous, as they abounded in high water breaks, large rocks and sharp turns. One never knew around what dust-clouded curve one would find a competitor halted in the road with a stuck machine."
Chariman Hower declared the roads the worst single stretch since the inception of the Glidden Tour. Participants were reported to be exhausted, strained and bruised, so much so that all entertainment events for the evening were canceled. Dusty and dirty the men wanted nothing more than a bath, food and a bed.
In many cases the passage constituted not of roads but of barely visible trails among thick woods. "Confetti Car" driver Dan Lewis lost his way at times further confusing those diligently trying to follow him. Several cars had not arrived at the time the Indianapolis Star reporter Peter Paul Willis filed his story. One vehicle carrying a race official identified as "Secretary Ferguson" suffered a broken axle in his Acme after veering into a ditch to avoid a small boy who had ventured out onto the path.
A "freelance" Studebaker press car also crashed into a ditch some 40 miles from the day's destination. The right front wheel was destroyed when the car's driver descended down a hill too quickly to to dash through a creek that must have disguised an obstacle such as boulder. In another incident that had nothing to do with the quality of the road a Chalmers-Detroit baggage car caught fire after a passenger carelessly threw a match inside the vehicle. All the competitors reportedly looked forward to the promise of better roads on the next day's stretch to Minneapolis.
The Indianapolis Star published a second article on the Glidden Tour on July 16, 1909 (Attachment GliddenHistory071609) this was less a news report than a retrospective. It reviews the then five-year history of the Glidden Tour beginning in 1905 with the donation of the trophy by Charles J. Glidden. The first tour started through New York and cover 1,000 miles in the area. A Pierce-Arrow won the trophy. There were 32 cars that started with 28 finishing. A White, Maxwell, Darracq and Cadillac finished with perfect scores.
In 1906 the Glidden Tour route was from Buffalo, New York to Mt. Washington, New Hampshire with 70 cars overall, 48 of which were in the Glidden Tour class. Of those, 13 finished with perfect scores while another 19 finished but with penalties. A companion tour for a cup called the Deming Trophy started in Chicago and synced up with the "Gliddenites" in Buffalo. This trophy was the donation of Paul Harvey Deming, chairman of the AAA touring committee at the time. While the Deming Trophy was awarded to Maxwell driver C.W. Kelsey the Glidden Tour ended in a kind of tie due to the 13 perfect scores. Amazingly the decision was not to award the trophy and it remained with Buffalo Auto Club because they provided the winning car the previous year.
The 1907 Glidden Tour started in Cleveland but backtracked as far west as Indianapolis before passing through several other stops to finish in New York. The trophy was a competition between the auto clubs of various cities and was again a Buffalo victory. Of the the 48 cars competing with 19 finishing with perfect scores. Among the marques with perfect scores were: Pierce, Thomas Flyer, White, Peerless, Packard, Haynes, Welch, Reo, Berliet, Royal Tourist, Premier and American Mors. The Hower Trophy replaced the Deming Trophy that year and was won by a White machine.
The 1908 Glidden Tour started in Buffalo and ended in Saratoga, New York. The auto club teams were restricted to three cars each with 30 cars in the Glidden Tour and 13 competing for the Hower Trophy. Three teams tied for the Glidden Trophy and five cars tied for the Hower Trophy.
For 1909 the rules were changed as for the first time fractional penalties could be assessed - that is, penalties of less than one point measured in tenths.  Despite the organization of car club teams the AAA decided to present all trophies (apparently there were awards beyond the Hower Trophy and an individual Glidden Trophy but this is unclear in the article) to individual cars. The cars were for the first time broken down into classes and this was based on price. Class A: $3,751 and more; Class B: $2,451 to $3,750; Class C: $1,751 to $2,450; Class D: $1,000 to $1,750 and Class E: under $1,000. The cars were allowed varying amounts of time to complete their runs with the less expensive machines allotted more.
Attachment Glidden072009 contains an article published in the July 20, 1909 Indianapolis Star that is a brief accounting of the trek between Minneapolis and Mankato, Minnesota a distance of 132 miles. The roads were a welcome relief from the recent Wisconsin stretch but nonetheless two noncontesting cars suffered accidents. One of the Studebaker-E.M.F. official "pilot" cars with Chief Observer Alfred Reeves aboard incurred a bent steering knuckle. Repairs were affected at the nearest blacksmith barn but the car arrived late. Boston newspaperman Howard R. Reinolds was thrown from the Studebaker press car although the reason was not explained. Reinolds was unhurt. The same car later broke a spring but it was repaired and the machine carried on.
Another press car - a Maxwell - hit a deep rut at the side of the road and bent a steering knuckle which was quickly repaired. The accident was triggered when the car's driver veered to avoid John S. Williams' Hower Trophy Pierce-Arrow runabout that for whatever reason was in the way.
Perhaps the biggest news was what must have been the embarrassing withdrawal of four Hower Trophy entrants - two Brush entires as well as a Hupmobile and a McIntyre. The Brushes had struggled with severe engine issues and telegraphed their intentions to withdraw from their headquarters. The reason offered was that their little seven HP engines simply could not maintain the required pace.
The day's drive began for the competitors at 8 AM but the "confetti car" had departed two hours earlier. Chairman Hower left at 7:30 AM. As they arrived in St. Paul they were escorted by that city's auto club to their grand auditorium and driven on a huge stage for the presentation of souvineers. From there they traveled to Owatonna, Minnesota. At the final arrival in Mankato, Minnesota the Gliddenites were greeted by, according to the article, the majority of the town's population who lined the roadway while blowing whistles.
Reports from locations along the day's course shared that roads between Ft. Dodge, Iowa and Council Bluffs, Iowa were as much as eight inches under water. Pierce-Arrow, Premier and Marmon entries packed blocks and tackle aboard their machines.
Attachment Glidden072109 contains an Indianapolis Star article published July 21, 1909 that is a concise summary of the leg between Minneapolis and Ft. Dodge, Iowa. The big news was the first serious injury of the tour. Starter E.L. Ferguson was thrown from his Acme roadster on a hairpin turn near Winnebago, Minnesota. The miscue was attributed to a broken pinion gear in the steering mechanism that let go at the apex of the corner. Ferguson was tossed out of the car to land against a barbed wire fence and suffer serious lacerations to his his hands and lower limbs. He was carried to a Pullman car on a train associated with the event.
In the meantime three cars were penalized for various infractions. A Midland lost 0.6 of a point for a broken fender rod while a Hower Trophy Maxwell lost 1.6 points for repacking a water manifold. The No. 3 Chalmers was late and this was apparently not the first such infraction for that team. Five Indianapolis entires, three Premiers and the two top-covered Marmons still had perfect scores.
One interesting point is some detail about the train with Pullman cars shadowing the tour competitors. It consisted of seven cars, four sleepers and two dining cars. One car was dedicated to Chairman Hower and his staff. Apparently the stretch  did not have hotel accommodations so many in the caravan had to camp or use the sleeper cars.
Another item published in the Indianapolis Star on July 21 is in attachment MarmonGlidden072109 and was originally published in the Minneapolis Tribune. This is an editorial cartoon that offers a caricature of Howard Marmon at the wheel of one of his cars. The impetus for the sketch was the fact that Marmon's two cars were the only ones in the event to utilize tops that protected the driver and passengers. The item reports that Marmon's motivation was not driven by his desire to protect himself from the elements but to test the durability of the tops. Throughout the articles covering the event the burning, blistering affects of sun exposure was reported so Marmon should have had no qualms about wanting to protect himself and his colleagues from the deleterious affects of Old Sol's rays.
Attachment Glidden072509 contains an article that discusses the leg of the tour that ended in Denver, Colorado. Much as the Gliddenites had bemoaned the quality of passage between Madison and La Crosse this trek was seen as far more brutal. At times there was simply no road across the 206 miles of prarie.
The cars pushed through streams and scaled foothills of the Rocky Mountains in conditions that were described as "terrible." Despite the travails and lack of trails only one car incurred a penalty, the No. 11 Thomas for repairing a broken gas pipe.
The roads leaving Julesburg, Colorado were fair for 30 miles but soon a twisting trail with what was described as "rotten bridges" produced delays. Following those bridges there were 20 miles of good passage followed by 100 mile prairie stretch devoid of road definition. Complicating the struggles of tour drivers' efforts to find the road was the destruction of the "confetti car"  when its engine burst into flames.
The area was described as desolate with prairie dogs the only living creatures. The cactus was so tough it reportedly got the better of a dozen tires. Participants arrived in Denver tired and sore with many sick from drinking alkali water. Not sure if this means alkaline water, which is regarded as healthful by some.
One car, a Glide machine, was reported lost as it had not arrived by midnight with no report on its whereabouts. The Thomas press car broke through one of the rotten bridges 70 miles outside Denver and plunged six feet into a ditch. Utlilizing a block and tackle some of the newspapermen were able to extract the car. Upon arrival the Denver Motor Club opened their clubhouse doors to their guests with plans for a two-day layover that included excursions to nearby mountains.
Attachment Glidden080109 contains an article published August 1, 1909 in the Indianapolis Star after the conclusion of the Glidden Tour that summarizes the performance of Indiana cars in the contest. The article focuses more directly on the fortunes of the Indianapolis manufacturers, specifically Marmon and Premier. Two Premiers and one Marmon held up with perfect scores. Former racing star Webb Jay, mentioned earlier, and teammate Harry Hammond took their Premiers through without penalty. Howard Marmon was the driver of the unscathed Marmon. Non-Indiana cars with perfect scores were Pierce-Arrows, a Moline, a Chalmers-Detroit and a Lexington.
The other Indiana cars mentioned in the story was an American Simplex and the hapless McIntyre (Auburn, Indiana) that was forced to retire before finishing. The article reports that experts of the day declared the 2,600 mile grind the most severe test yet in the five year Glidden history. Interestingly, the newspaper only takes a swipe at Chicago in criticizing host cities along the way. All others are praised. Chicago was seen as nonchalant and unenthused.
Chairman Hower acknowledged the tough challenge but was enthusiastic about the results. He was quoted saying:
"In the first place it has been the hardest test that has ever been imposed upon such a number of touring cars, and n my opinion has certainly proved the durability and incidentally the worth of every car that has finished the trip. It is the first trip of its kind through the Western country, but by no means is it the last."
Charles J. Glidden himself declared the tour a success, saying:
"Not only have natural conditions made this trip harder than any yet made, but the rules have been much more severe, the twenty-mile-an hour stipulation at first seeming as something impoosible of accomplishment throughout the tour. It was made, however, and all the credit due a car for passing through the hardest test possible should be given the forty cars in this contest."
The article reports on an item of controversy with respect to new rules for the 1909 event. This centered on a sliding scale in terms of penalties for mechaical failures assessed cars of different price points. The more expensive the car, the greater the penalty. Two cars could both have the same issue, such as a fractured steering knuckle, but the more expensive car would incur a larger penalty. The theory, I assume although it is not explained in the article, is that the more expensive car should be of higher quality and less likely to break. The article urged AAA organizers to change the rule before the following year because, according to the Star's article, most motorists believed it was unfair.

Glidden071209.pdf10.13 MB
Glidden071309.pdf12.27 MB
Glidden071409.pdf6.21 MB
Glidden071609.pdf4.28 MB
GliddenHistory071609.pdf7.64 MB
Glidden072009.pdf2.45 MB
Glidden072109.pdf2.26 MB
MarmonGlidden072109.pdf2.99 MB
Glidden072509.pdf1.96 MB
Glidden080109.pdf5.1 MB