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The Ten-Millionth Ford photographed near City Hall in Lancaster, PA on the afternoon of Wednesday June 18, 1924. (Lancaster New Era, Thursday June 19, 1924, Pg. 3)

A Century ago Ten-Millionth Ford in York on coast-to-coast tour

On Wednesday June 18, 1924, the ten-millionth Ford overnighted in York, while traveled the Lincoln Highway from New York to San Francisco. The car left Times Square in New York on June 16, which was 12-days after the car rolled off the production line in Detroit. This summer, that same car will be repeating that cross-country journey on the Lincoln Highway.

The York Dispatch of Thursday June 19, 1924, reported: “The ten-millionth Ford car now on its transcontinental tour attracted much attention last evening in the salesrooms of the York Motor Car and the E. A. Clark Auto companies. It arrived here from Philadelphia yesterday afternoon and left today. There is no attempt at record making on the tour.”

Lancaster newspapers reported the Ten-Millionth Ford left Lancaster at 4:30 P.M., therefore arriving in York late afternoon of June 18, 1924, possibly at about 5:30 P.M. The car was likely initially displayed in the showroom of the York Motor Company, located at 229-231 South George Street. That business was one of the largest Ford dealerships in Southern Pennsylvania at the time. It was the Ford dealership in York that Henry Ford stopped at on June 7, 1929, while he was on an antique buying trip along the Lincoln Highway in Pennsylvania. That building still stands, although heavily modified as Golden George Beauty Supply.

Later in the evening of June 18, the Ten-Millionth Ford was displayed in a showroom of the E. A. Clark Auto Company, located at 335-337 West Market Street. The following is an E. A. Clark Auto Company ad after loosing Franklin and Oldsmobile dealerships during 1923. In 1924 Clark’s business focused on used Fords and Ford Service, in hopes of landing a Ford auto dealership; however that never happened. Although it is suspected E. A. Clark provided one of the apartments in his building as overnight accommodations for Ten-Millionth Ford driver and photo crew; possibly to gain favor in being granted a Ford dealership.

This is E. A. Clark Auto Company ad after loosing Franklin and Oldsmobile dealerships. In 1924 the business focused on used Fords and Ford Service, in hopes of landing a Ford auto dealership; which never happened. E. A. Clark downsized in 1925, selling the four-story building at 335-337 West Market Street, with apartments on upper floors and auto showrooms on main floor. It is where Jacob Doll operated a long time Pontiac dealership. (Gazette & Daily, August 21, 1924, Pg. 7)

E. A. Clark downsized in 1925, selling the four-story building at 335-337 West Market Street, with apartments on upper floors and auto showrooms on main floor. It is where Jacob Doll operated a long time Pontiac dealership. That building still stands today and is remarkably close to its appearance from a Century ago.

The 1924 tour of the Ten-Millionth Ford

The 1924 tour began from Times Square on Monday morning June 16. The first day’s journey was through New Jersey on the Lincoln Highway, with the Monday overnight stop at Princeton. On Tuesday June 17 the car went into Philadelphia and the city was also the Tuesday overnight stop. On Wednesday June 18 the car traveled westward through Southern Pennsylvania communities on the Lincoln Highway before arriving in the late afternoon in York, which also served as the Wednesday overnight stop.

The driver of the Ten-Millionth Ford car during the cross-country tour was Frank Kulick. He is a former racing driver, having won fame and broke many records in a Ford. In 1924, Kulick held a position in the testing department at Ford Motor Company. Only one adjustment to the car was required during the cross-country trip. There were no breakdowns.

Night stops on the tour featured motion pictures showing the assembly on June 4, of the Ten-Millionth Ford car in the Highland Park plant of the Ford Motor Company at Detroit. Accompanying the Ten-Millionth Ford car was another car carrying the official photographer and a motion picture camera crew to document events along the route, so that a complete movie history of the tour could be made.

All across the country, occasionally formal parades were arranged which intercepted the Ford as it approached and accompanied it through towns. However more often, Ford dealers and/or owners of older Fords formed impromptu parades escorting the Ten-Millionth Ford car into and through their towns or communities.

After leaving York the morning of Thursday June 19, 1924, the Ten-Millionth Ford made a stop at the Abbottstown Garage of W. J. Craumer before arriving in Gettysburg that morning. The Gettysburg Times reported, “it stopped to have its picture taken in Gettysburg’s historic square. An official photographer accompanies the ten millionth Ford in another car. The National Cemetery and other points of interest on the battlefield were visited by the Ford. The trip over the battlefield was arranged by the local Ford agents, Plank and Bell, York Street.”

The 100th Anniversary tour of the Ten-Millionth Ford on the Lincoln Highway from New York to San Francisco kicks off in June 2024. I wonder if the motion picture made of the original 1924 tour still exists? If it does, the scenes recorded in York would make a nice addition to video towers at the new York County History Center museum.

Click on this LINK for a yorkblog.com Full View of the photos and illustrations in this post.

Links to related posts:

Historic Ford travels the Lincoln Highway again

Doll’s Pontiac Garage began as City Hotel of a Kindig horse dealer

York was in danger of losing the Lincoln Highway during 1914

Henry Ford motored to York on the Lincoln Highway in 1929

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