Archive for June, 2011

Chadwick 1904-1916

The Chadwick automobile was built by Lee Sherman Chadwick in Pottstown, PA by his company, The Fairmont Engineering Works. By 1906 the company had manufactured a total of 40 cars, Not a huge number when compared to mass production numbers, but Chadwick cars were hand built, had innovative mechanical design, and featured luxurious hand-stitched leather seats. There is a lot of conflicting information about this car out there, I have even seen people claiming to be relatives on the Antique Automobile Club of American forums. (I am not saying they are not relatives.)

Like many other early automobile pioneers, Chadwick believed the way to demonstrate the quality of his car was to race it. His challenge was how to turn his six-cylinder chain drive luxury car into a racecar. Chadwick came up with an idea for an air compressor used to force more oxygen to support combustion than would be available in a regular engine. This would allow more fuel to be burned and more work to be done per cycle, increasing the power output of the engine. This is known today as a supercharger.

In the hill climbing racecar photo above you might notice the protective chain cover. The protective chain cover is one of the features highlighted in the ad below. The Chadwick focus on hill climbing and racing was expensive and would contribute to financial difficulties. Lee Chadwick got out of the automobile business in 1912, but his company continued to build cars until 1916.

According to the 1922 edition of who’s who in engineering, Chadwick was General Superintendent of Searchmont (Spelled Searchment in the book, but I think that is a typo–see the ad below.)  Automobile Company of Chester, Pa in 1903 before forming his own engineering firm that designed and built Chadwick marine motors and automobiles. The Fairmont Engineering Works was renamed Chadwick Engineering Works of Philadelphia in 1907. Chadwick had already taken out over 70 patents by 1922 and had over 70 pending.

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Century 1899-1903

Century built steam, electric, and gasoline automobiles in Syracuse, New York. They all had tiller steering. The advertisement above is for the 1902 Century.  The January 7th 1904 issue of Motor Age reported the Century Motor Company produced an excellent gasoline automobile, and took enough orders at the New York Auto show to have a good year. Century was unable to handle the volume of vehicles sold or to build the cars at the price estimated they could be turned out. The Century Company went to great expense in purchasing new equipment for their factory and had built one of the best automobile plants in the country at that time. Century had too many liabilities to make a merger with another company a financially sound decision. In July of 1903 Century laid off 200 employees and production ceased.

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Case 1911-1927

Jerome Increase Case, started the J.I. Case Threshing Machine Co., and was a manufacturer of construction and agricultural equipment in Racine, WI. Late in 1910, Case purchased the Pierce Motor Co. of Racine, WI, the producer of the Pierce-Racine automobile, not to be confused with the Pierce-Arrow automobile, they were not related. Pierce-Racine was renamed “Case” and vehicles built after the traditional August model change date were badged and sold as 1911 Case automobiles. The Pierce sold for $1750.00 and the same car with the Case badge and similar appearance sold for $1950.00. The Case was marketed in the luxury car segment with a price range of $1875.00 to $3750.00 in 1918. Case continued to produce cars until 1927 when they closed production after only 200 units were built. Starting in 1921, Case also produced a 2-ton truck that sold for $3000.00 utilizing the “Plow Works” plant for the assembly line. The same engine was used in the truck as the tractors. There was also a Case truck built in 1912 by Stephenson Motor Truck Company, but they only have the name in common. Above is the 1925 Case Touring and below is the 1914 Case Limo. Cars and trucks are but part of their history now, but the Case Corporation, is the third largest producer of farm equipment today.

Shown below is one of the 8000 Case distributors with B.F. Goodrich tires out front. Early automobile tires were made out of natural white rubber like you see in this photo. Later, carbon black was added to the rubber used for the treads to increase traction and endurance. That process produced tires with inner and outer sidewalls of white rubber, and black tread. When black tires first became available, the white sidewalls were covered with a thin layer of black rubber.

Many automobile manufactures of that period maintained a racing team. Almost immediately after purchasing Pierce-Racine, Case formed a racing team. Three Case Racers were built using the 4-cylinder roadster chassis, and each of them qualified for the Indianapolis 500 race in 1911, taking the pole position as well as two spots in the second row. None of the cars finished the race, one was in a wreck and the other two suffered mechanical failure. Below is a photo of the 1911 Case racer Number 9 named “Wild Bill” Jones. It was customary in those days to name the cars. Case dropped out of racing in 1915.

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Cartercar 1906-1915

Byron J. Carter originally produced cars in Grand Rapids (a steam car) then in Jackson, MI, then Detroit, and then in Pontiac MI. Carter had built cars as early as 1899 and In 1901, he formed the Michigan Automobile Company in Grand Rapids, Michigan. On July 19, 1902 Byron J. Carter along with George A. Matthews and Charles Lewis, all of Jackson, Michigan formed the Jackson Automobile Company. B. J. Carter was its first Vice President, claiming 800 shares of stock.

Carter invented and patented a new transmission, which he called friction drive. This was similar to today’s CVT (Continuous Variable Transmission) and was the pathway to developing the automatic transmission. When there was a disagreement over using Carter’s new transmission design in the production Jackson vehicle, Carter left and started the “Motor Car Company” in Jackson, MI. in the spring of 1905. After finding financial backing in Detroit he moved the company there and changed the name to the Cartercar Company. Soon Carter merged with the Pontiac Spring & Wagon Works Company in Pontiac, MI and relocated again to build the Cartercar in that factory. The Cartercar was advertised as the car with “A thousand speeds—No clutch to slip—No gears to strip—No universal joints to break—No driveshaft to twist—No bevel gears to wind and howl—No noise to annoy.” Byron Carter died April 6, 1908 after trying to hand crank start a car for a stranded woman motorist on the Belle Isle Bridge. The crank kicked back, breaking his jaw and he died from complications. Charles Kettering of the Dayton Engineering Laboratories (Delco) started working on a safer way to start cars. The result was an electric starter that was first used in mass production on the Cadillac in 1912. You will find a scan of the cover from the 1912 Cadillac brochure that proclaims the car without a crank.
Billy Durant had his eye on The Cartercar Company, because he liked the friction drive used on the car. Durant thought friction drive had a great future with General Motors, and the auto industry. On October 26, 1909 the Cartercar Company became one of almost 30 firms purchased by William Durant in the two years after incorporating General Motors. Production was well below the 1000-2000 yearly sales that Durant had predicted. Durant had been removed from GM in 1910 mainly because of his spending sprees, and by 1915, the Board of Directors decided to discontinue production. The factory would be converted over to produce the Oakland automobile. The Cartercar and the friction drive transmission Durant had big plans for were gone. I have added some photos of the Cartercar factory at the bottom.

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How to figure your church growth rate

By Rev. Rick Robinson

Growth rates are an important part of the diagnostic tools we have in our church growth toolbox. Part of developing your church growth strategies will be understanding growth rates.

First let me clarify what numerical growth is. These numbers we count are much more than statistics. Each one has a name and God knows them, loves them, and desires to have a relationship with them. Trying to separate evangelism and discipleship is like trying to slice a quarter in half so you will have 50 cents. You do not. We must reach people for Jesus, but also assimilate them into a loving church and disciple them. These numbers are only a tool to keep us on track, as a physician would use a thermometer and his other instruments to diagnose a patient.

Each church is either growing, on a plateau, or declining. Eighty percent of the churches in America are not growing in fact eight churches a day close in the United States and Canada. When we do a consultation we look at the AGR (Annual Growth Rate) AAGR (Average Annual Growth Rate) and DGR (Decade Growth Rate).

Before I show you how to figure your growth rate, let me explain what we are looking for. In church growth terms, a church is not growing unless it increases by five percent a year. On the other side, a church is not in a decline unless it is losing five percent a year. Everything in that ten percent window (five percent plus–and five percent minus) is considered a plateau. Most of the churches that have partnered with us and have a membership to our associate services are growing at twenty percent. The smaller a church is, the easier it is for that number to be higher. It is not unusual for us to be able to double many of the churches that have 50 or less in worship in twelve months time. My home church, Idlewild Baptist Church, here in Tampa, has around 7500 in worship. Growing five percent is a lot more work. You get the idea, and have a few thoughts already about your own church.

Now let’s look at these church growth tools and get started on the path to new church growth ideas, with old church growth principles. The Annual Growth Rate (AGR) Not to insult your intelligence, is used to tell us how much numerical growth has occurred from one year to the next, and what the trend will most likely be, if no changes are made.

At Church growth Associates, we have weekly tracking and accountability for the churches we partner with, when it comes to worship attendance. We want to make adjustments as needed and not wait until the end of the year to figure out what went wrong (or right). In my examples I use attendance, so it can’t be said we have more members than there are people. Church membership is important, but attendance is a great measure of our effectiveness. You can use members for your calculations if you like, use any criterion you desire, just keep consistent with the formula from year to year.

1. Subtract the earlier year’s average attendance, from the later year’s average attendance.
2. Divide the answer you get by the earlier year.
3. Multiply the answer you get by 100 to change the decimal to percent.
4. The answer is your AGR.

Let’s give an illustration of this example. Gracious Church had an average attendance of 125 last year. This year Gracious Church had an average of 180 in attendance.

This year    180
Last year  – 125
Increase      55

An increase of 55 in worship, divided by the earlier year average (125) is .44 times 100 (to convert to percent). The AGR for Gracious Church is 44% this year.

Now go back for the last ten years, and get the AGR for each one. This will give you a look at the trend your church is on, and where it most likely will be in ten years if no changes are made.

If you don’t have Microsoft Office or PowerPoint, you will find a link to the open source alternative, Open Office in our library you can own at no charge. This will help you to see a graph of your progress.

You can use the same formula as above to find your DGR if you desire, but I recommend working with the numbers from the past ten years. We use older history only when there are more questions that need to be answered. Ten years is sufficient in most cases.

You are invited to check out the vast resources for church growth on our main website. Here are just a few.

Church Experience Project

The Un-churched by State

Adding Another Worship Service

Check out our Library

If you would like to see if Church Growth Associates could help you with your strategies for church growth, tell us your story, maybe we can help.

Rick Robinson


Copyright 2011 Church Growth Associates, Inc.

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Brush 1907-1912

Brush Runabout Company, later named the Brush Motorcar Company, was founded in 1906 by Alanson P. Brush, in Detroit, MI. Brush encouraged people of ordinary means to give up horses and buy cars, as you can see in the advertisement below. Brush emphasized small size to reduce costs and performance on the mainly dirt roads that were bumpy in dry weather and muddy in wet weather. The car sold for only $500.00 in 1907.

Brush was merged in 1910 with several other automobile companies into the United States Motor Company. The United States Motor Company was organized by Benjamin Briscoe, and was somewhat an attempt to copycat and compete with GM. This effort to try to save independent automobile companies included: Maxwell, Stoddard-Dayton, Courier Car Co, Columbia Automobile Company, Brush Motor Car Company, Alden, Sampson Trucks, Gray, Marine, and Providence Engineering Works, and Thomas and others coming aboard later. Many of the vehicles in this new company had price reductions to stimulate sales. The Liberty Brush selling for $350.00 was the last attempt at saving Brush. There is a photo of a Brush Liberty dealership posted below.

The last year for sale of the Brush automobile was 1912. Walter Flanders purchased the United States Motor Company and constituent companies for $7,080,000 at a public foreclosure sale in January of 1913 and reorganized the company as the Maxwell Motor Company, Inc. This was the only surviving member of the group, which later was reorganized and became Chrysler. Below is the Brush Runabout factory.

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BrownieKar 1908-1910

S.H. Mora, founder of the Mora Motor Car Company started building his cars in 1906 in Rochester, NY, then later in Newark, NY. Mora built a one cylinder, belt driven juvenile motor car, named the BrownieKar. Marketed at around $150.00, it was intended for any responsible boy or girl of eight years of age or older. A young Buster Keaton, the great silent film comedy actor of the 1920’s is behind the wheel of this 1910 BrownieKar.

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Adams-Farwell 1904-1913

In 1898 the first Adams-Farwell “horseless carriage,” was built in Dubuque, Iowa, by Eugene Adams and Fay Oscar Farwell. The  engine was designed by Fay Farwell, a self-taught mechanic. Farwell’s engine revolved on a vertical axis, the crankshaft did not turn, the engine did, which also cooled it. You can see the chassis illustration below. The car was the first in the world to be powered with a rotary air-cooled engine placed in the rear of the car. The cars would not be ready for production and marketing until 1904. Even after marketing began, the car sold mostly regional and most of the inventory went to a showroom in Chicago.

Adams-Farwell cars were noted for being innovative. The arrangement of the left to right hand steering operation, and the convertible brougham which was fitted with a closed body, had a folding front seat and controls that could be moved and then driven from inside the cab. This would be similar to many early delivery trucks like Divco, making it easier for delivery men to work either side of the street. Other innovations included fuel injection, supercharging, and automatic timing. Farwell also did not believe a muffler was needed on the cars, an innovation that not everyone agreed with. Notice the 1906 ad at the top states “No Muffler”.

The Adams-Farwell had twenty-two coats of hand-rubbed lacquer for a deep finish. The cars were also appointed with pleated leather seats and brass lamps. Adams-Farwell cars cost between $2,500 and $4,500 at a time when the Model T, and many other cars were selling for $700 and less. Ford was not the only inexpensive car, but probably the most well know because of the court battles with Seldon. You will be able to read about that once the Seldon automobile is posted here.

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How much space do I need?

By Rev. Rick Robinson

Church Growth and Sunday School Space may go together more than you think. One question often asked is how much space is needed when planning a Sunday School? The needs of a church will vary according to size, and age distribution. In an average church the babies and toddlers may amount to three percent, while your church may have a greater number or even none at all. The space needed for a Sunday School will vary, but here is guide you can use when planning your small groups. This guideline is a strategy for church growth, you can get by with less if you have too, but if you sacrifice these ratios you may effect attendance and future church growth.

Age Group    Square Feet / Person
Babies -Kindergarten    30-35
Primary – Middle School    25-30
High School    20-25
Adults    10-15

To maximize the utility you get from existing buildings, you may need to do some measuring. I have a digital tape measure I use for such a project. You can purchase one at Lowes; they are relatively inexpensive and can save a lot of time. I have seen rooms that have not been used for a while with things stacked up in them, and this tool will avoid your having to move things around or climb over them, since it just pings off the wall. You can also work alone if you have this tool, and many pastors don’t always have someone available to help.

Once you figure the square footage of the rooms you will have available; you can use the guidelines provided to see how many people can be accommodated in each room.

Determine the ministry God wants you to do, then adopt your resources to that mission. If you are a church that operates a school during the week in your facilities, I suggest you don’t force your members, and particularly your guest, to sit in your small groups using a school desk. Get creative; get some comfortable adult accommodating chairs in those rooms even if it means more set up and take down time.

Rarely if ever can any one factor be the cause for the growth or decline of a church. It requires a combination of factors to develop a growing church. This combination of factors is called the “growth mix”. Every church has a growth mix, be it a poor one that causes decline or a good one that causes growth. When our church growth consultants diagnose a church to discover the growth mix, we use church growth ratios and principles as a guideline. When it comes to small groups and church growth, keep the following church growth principles in mind.

Every small group, including Sunday School, will eventually close itself off. This is called saturation. Saturation can be caused by many variables, but the most powerful influence is time itself. For this reason, one of the most powerful strategies we have for growth of the Sunday School, or other small group, is creating new units, or classes on a regular basis. Twenty percent of your small groups should have been started in the last two years.

Reclaiming wasted space, freshening up rooms and the environment presented by the condition and cleanliness of the rooms and properly allocating space can be a boost for Sunday School and church growth. The bottom line will be better assimilation of people into a caring church fellowship.

Rick Robinson is a church growth consultant with Church Growth Associates.

If you would like help with strategies for church growth, click here. One of our church growth consultants will call you with no obligation to see if we can help you grow your church.

Copyright 2011 Church Growth Associates, Inc.

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Briscoe 1914 -1921

Benjamin Briscoe established the Briscoe Manufacturing Company in Detroit, Michigan in 1886 for the purpose of producing sheet metal products for the booming new automobile industry. In 1904 Briscoe joined talents with Jonathan Maxwell to produce the Maxwell-Briscoe automobile.

In 1909 Alice Ramsey became the first woman in history to drive an automobile from coast to coast using a Maxwell-Briscoe. The advertising stunt was dreamed up by the company’s sales manager, and a new green 1909 DA model was provided for Alice to drive. Alice took three other women with her on the trip, as you can see in the publicity photo below.

The automobile Alice drove featured an original stock four-cylinder engine that produced 30 horsepower. Advertising campaigns after the coast to coast trip told of 10,700 continuos run miles on the same engine you can buy in your next car. The enhancements to the vehicle were a larger gas tank, a rack for two extra tires and a tire repair kit. When Alice got her first flat tire of the trip, she repaired the tire, explaining each step of the process to the newspapermen who were following them. In my collection of automobile memorabilia, I have a vintage jack like the one she used in the photo below, and I wouldn’t want to use it myself. It is said that after she changed the tire, the newspapermen took turns using the pump to fill the tire with air.

This 59-day trip brought Maxwell-Briscoe enough publicity to increase sales up from 9,460 in 1909, to approximately 20,500 in 1910. In 1912, Briscoe left for France to build the Ajax cyclecar but production was halted when his factory was needed for shell manufacturing during World War I.

Briscoe returned to the United States in 1914, where he began producing Briscoe automobiles in Jackson, Michigan. The 1914 and 1915 Briscoe automobiles had a single “Cyclops” headlight set in the radiator shell as you can see in the top photo of a 1915 model. When Briscoe started his original company making sheet metal parts for cars, radiators were his specialty. This design was creative alright, but the design would need to be changed over to the double headlight design, since it was illegal to have the single headlight in some states.

Briscoe sales figures increased each year of production until 1920. Late in 1921, the Briscoe was renamed the Earl and by 1923 the car was discontinued. Below is a photo of a Briscoe Automobile Dealership.

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