Overland "Rough Rider"

Originally published in the Sunday, March 20, 1910 Indianapolis Star, this image of an Overland Automobile Company test car was part of  a special supplemental section about the upcoming March 28 Indianapolis Automobile Show presented by the Indianapolis Automobile Trade Association (IATA). Key features of the event were the Floral Parade, contests at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and concluding banquet at the Denison Hotel.
Overland was an Indianapolis-based automobile manufacturer in the early twentieth century. The company remained there until some time after it was acquired by the dynamic industrialist John Willys. The company leveraged the promotional platform of the Brickyard with creative features such as the May 1910 race meet's hazard course. It also offered a gold-plated touring car as a prize to the driver turning the fastest speed at the track in 1910.
Overland's hazard course is perhaps the most interesting and unique program they brought to the track. In a creative twist the men, such as the one pictured here, were called "motor cowboys." The hazard course largely consisted of mobile wood plank ramps with ascending and descending sides. It must have been something to see - and still would be.

OverlandTest.jpg2.29 MB