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Catalog Number 1973.423
Description Two-seat carriage is black with tan interior. It has a convertible top and a rear rumble seat with a black leather-covered cushion that is surrounded by iron rod railing. Carriage has two large twelve-spoked wheels in back and two smaller ten-spoked wheels in front, all with solid black rubber tires. Black carriage has red trim detail, including a monogram. Front seat has cloth upholstered cushions. Carriage has electrified Brewster & Co. lights on exterior sides of seats. Lights are black painted metal with oval-shaped beveled glass front and side windows and a small round red glass window in back. Fixtures have conical-shaped finials with bulbous bands beneath them. They are mounted to carriage via a U-shaped black painted bracket and a cloth-covered electrical cord that extends out the bottom on one side. The proper right lantern has a round glass bulb mounted into its brass fitting.
Object Name Phaeton
Collection 3D - Land Transportation Tools & Equipment
Title c. 1893 Spider Phaeton Carriage
Date c. 1893
Creator Brewster
Role Manufacturer
Inscription Text "JP" (red monogram on exterior sides near seat)
Provenance From the Roth Collection at Filoli.
-The Roth Collection is particularly significant as all of the carriages were built by one of the two Brewster firms in New York City, producers of the finest quality vehicles for America's leading families. The National Carriage Association in Staten Island has the original records of the Brewster Company. Since Roth carriages were produced for use in California, they evidence some special changes to adapt them to their owner's way of living. As of June 10, 1973, each carriage was in superb condition, never having been restored. Each carriage bears an individual registration number from the factory. The carriages were built almost entirely of wood, and many coats of paint were applied, each coat rubbed and polished until it was mirror-smooth. As the paint of that era dried slowly, there often was more than a week's wait between the application of coats.
Notes Also called a Gentleman's Phaeton, this Spider Phaeton would have been driven by the estate owner and not a coachman. The rumble seat in the rear allowed a footman to accompany him. After arriving at the railroad station for the morning commute, the footman could return the Spider Phaeton back to the estate. This sportsman's vehicle was drawn by two horses. It has been modified with two Brewster & Company of New York battery-powered lanterns.
"Phaeton" generally refers to a family of vehicles having speed and elegance and is characterized by light construction, no doors, a high seat and large wheels. The phaeton served as an efficient traveling vehicle and was favored by the adventuresome sportsman who enjoyed "handling the ribbons" of his carriage. In other vehicles, the servants drove the owner.
Dimensions H-74 W-55.5 D-98 inches
Search Terms Brewster
Horse Drawn Vehicles
Roth, Lurline Matson
Roth, William P (Mrs.)
Subjects Carriages & coaches
People Place-Filoli
Roth, Lurline Matson
Roth, William P. Mrs.