1910 American Underslung
"Traveler Toy Tonneau"
Configuration: Longitudinal front engine
Engine: T-head inline four-cylinder
Displacement: 499.2 cu
Horsepower: 50 bhp
Transmission: Three-speed manual
A Little History
The American Underslung Traveler is an authentic survivor of Brass Era cars and boasts a four-cylinder engine, three-speed manual transmission, front and rear semi-elliptical leaf-spring suspension, and rear-wheel expanding drum brakes. It was designed by Fred Tone and features a chassis design, resulting in a beautiful style and superb handling. The American Underslung was the 2014 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance Best in Class winner and was previously owned by Walter Seeley, Joel Finn, and Richard King.
Walter Seeley, of Russell, Pennsylvania, is most famous for restoring the Deemer family’s several American automobiles. This Traveler was reportedly the finest, most original American owned by Mr. Seeley, and importantly, a large part of his archives passed with it when the car was sold to another famed enthusiast, Joel Finn.
Mr. Finn eventually passed the car to Richard King, a well-known East Coast enthusiast of Brass Era automobiles. Mr. King brought the car to Brian Joseph’s respected restoration facility, Classic & Exotic Service, of Troy, Michigan, to undergo a full Pebble Beach-quality restoration.
The American’s body was removed from the chassis, with every piece of the running gear, including the engine, transmission, rear axle, springs, and shackles taken apart individually and restored to original condition. Once the sheet metal was taken off the body, its original wood was revealed. It was in such great condition, only a few small areas needed to be repaired.
The restored body was then reupholstered, and, using a collection of large-format factory photographs, the restoration was confirmed to have its original design and execution. It is a remarkable, authentic example of an automobile that was the most elite of its era and proudly American.
Did you know?
- The American Underslub completed the Tour d’Elegance, had no mechanical issues, and went on to win Best in Class.
- Its unusually angled folding windshield was confirmed to be an original period piece.