The Big Car Database


The Partin Manufacturing Company was a brass era American automobile manufacturer, headquartered at 29 South La Salle Street, Chicago, Illinois.


The Partin Manufacturing Company was a large automobile sales agency in Chicago, that in 1913 joined with the Palmer Motor Car Co. of Henry Palmer in Detroit, to manufacture cycle cars called the Pioneer, with a model 45 named the Partin, and a model 38 named Partin-Palmer. The Partin model did not last to the end of 1913, and all models were subsequently called Partin-Palmers.The company first moved to Chicago to take over the Staver-Chicago automobile factory. By 1914, Partin and Palmer were no longer with the company, and it moved to Rochelle, where the Geo D. Whitcomb Company assembled them.

In 1915 the company got into financial trouble in Chicago, so the car's name was changed to Commonwealth (1917–1922), with production moved to Joliet, Illinois. In 1922, Leland Goodspeed designed a new car for the company, which became the Checker Cab.

A restored Partin-Palmer is displayed at the Flagg Township Museum in Rochelle, Illinois.


Partin-Palmer 20

In 1914, the Partin-Palmer 20 tourer was offered with a four-cylinder watercooled engine of 22 hp (16 kW), with Gray and Davis generator, optional Gray and Davis electric starter, and (still unusual) shaft drive. It had a 56 in (142 cm) tread (track) and 96 in (2438 mm) wheelbase, with ¾-elliptic springs and I-beam front axle (which would still be seen on Ford pickups into the 1990s).

The 20 came standard with electric lighting and horn, folding top with side curtains and dust boot, speedometer, the (typical for the period) tool kit, jack, and tire patch, all for US$495.

By contrast, around that time, the high-volume Oldsmobile Runabout was US$650, the Ford Model S was US$700 and Model T US$550, a Brush Runabout was US$485, a Metz Model 22 $475, Western's Gale Model A US$500, the Black starting as low as $375, and the Success an amazingly low US$250.

Partin-Palmer 38

The same year, a six-passenger Model 38 with a 115 in (2921 mm) wheelbase was also available, for US$975.