Dec 02 2014

Mystery Foto #96 Solved: Willie K. at the 1903 Eagle Rock Hill Climb in his Mors

This holiday weekend's Mystery Foto was taken many years ago on Thanksgiving.

Mystery Foto questions:

-Identify the driver

25-year old William K. Vanderbilt, Jr.

-Provide the date of the photo, its location and the race

Date: Thanksgiving Day, November 26, 1903

Location: Eagle Rock, West Orange, New Jersey

Race: Eagle Rock Hill Climbing Contest

-Identify the automobile.

Mors (Identified as 30-HP and 60-HP)

Congrats to Ariejan Bos, Greg O., Art Kleiner and Steve Lucas for correctly identifying Willie K. athe 1903 Eagle Rock Hill Climb with his Mors.



Howard Kroplick

From Ariejan Bos

Kleiner's Korner (Submitted by Art Kleiner)

Horseless Age, December 2, 1903

Thomas Edison at the Hill Climb.

The race started at where the current Lady of Lourdes Church is located (1 Eagle Rock Avenue).  By the way, Lady of Lourdes is celebrating its 100th Anniversary this month (November).  Prior to the actual starting point, racers were given the opportunity to gain speed by traveling down Harrison Avenue.  Once on Eagle Rock Ave., they traveled to Eagle Rock Reservation which was the finish line. 


Motor, January 1904

Automobile Review, December 1903

Log of My Motor, William K. Vanderbilt, Jr.,1912

See page 205 of Log of My Motor by William K. Vanderbilt, Jr.


Nov 27 2014 Joe Oesterle 11:58 PM

Willie K, outside the entrance to his Deepdale Estate.

Nov 28 2014 Steve Lucas 5:10 PM

That’s William K. Vanderbilt, Jr. in a 1902 MORS (car #28) at West Orange, NJ. The date of the photo is Thursday, November 26, 1903. Willie K won the Eagle Rock Hill Climbing Contest that day with a time of 1.36 1/4 minutes. The 2nd., 3rd., and 4th. place entries were: #4 Darracq, F. A. LaRoche (1.46); #1 Mercedes, H. W. Whipple (2.11); #31 Columbia, N. F. Brady (3.29).

Nov 28 2014 Ted 6:52 PM

There’s something strange about this one, it’s a questionable mystery to answer. I notice that there’s no seat for the mechanician. so how can it be a race? also , the people are looking at the driver very strangely, maybe because of what he’s wearing? Can a seat be put on and taken off, I see something where maybe that can be done, or is that the gas cap in the center next to the driver? If so, then this is either before or after the race. I’m being very observant this time, after what happened last week

Nov 29 2014 Art Kleiner 9:11 AM

Hope everyone had a nice Thanksgiving Day.  Howard, see Kleiner’s Korner documentation for this mystery photo.

-Identify the driver
Willie K. Vanderbilt, II

-Provide the date of the photo, its location and the race
Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 26, 1903
West Orange, NJ
Third Eagle Rock Hill Climbing Contest

-Identify the automobile.
30 Horsepower Mors.  #28, won the contest in 1 minute, 34 seconds by Vanderbilt.

Nov 29 2014 Greg O. 5:41 PM

-Identify the driver

Willie K.

-Provide the date of the photo, its location and the race

Thanksgiving Day 1903- West Orange, New Jersey- Eagle Rock Hill Climbing Contest

-Identify the automobile.

60-hp Mors

Nov 30 2014 Ariejan Bos 3:10 PM

The driver on the photo is William K. Vanderbilt in a Mors Z. The event is the Eagle Rock Hill Climb on November 26th, 1903. He won the 1 mile event for gasoline cars over $3000 in the time of 1 min. 36.75 secs.

Dec 02 2014 Ariejan Bos 11:09 AM

Both 30hp and 60hp are correct, I guess. The Mors type L had a 9.2 litre engine which developed 30hp at 900 rpm, maximum output was 60hp.

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