The red body Stanley
Its been claimed by some and according to others has been documented that Stanley never painted the early cars red? Or did they? However when Frederick Oscar Bean brought the first Stanley home to the farm in Dixmont Maine, his wife Gertrude (Pauline) as she was called did not like the green color. Oscar told her the only other color he had seen was a blue. Well grandmar, Vesty Bean Oscar dear old mother spoke up and said she detested blue on any thing but the sky. Old Oscar pushed the Stanley into the barn. The next morning Gertrude wanted to see the car. Oscar went to the barn and rolled out a beautiful red Stanley, and so was born the red Stanley. Down Maine barn red. (see Photo)
This is not the end of the story. Oscar did not own the Stanley, nor did he own the farm. Oscar was a tenant farmer. He ran the farm for a man named Ferguson, His cousin, from the Boston area of Massachusetts. Ferguson owned Hotels and some Bakeries and Laundries. Ferguson only bought the Stanley because he was talked into it by several of his business associates, this was around 1903-04, I can’t recall the exact date. At this time most of the Hotels, Bakeries and Laundries had there own boiler rooms and steam engines for power. Boston Edison had not yet installed the first of the eight vertical Curtis turbines built by General Electric. Cheep power did not come into its own and widely distributed till after the first four of the Curtis turbines were on line. Most all business requiring major power, generated their own and Ferguson had steam engineers and boiler men on his payroll. He him self know nothing of this mechanical stuff. He was reluctant to try and operate the Stanley where anyone could see him fuss with such stuff.
Ferguson sent Oscar down to Newton Mass to fetch the car. Oscar brought it back to the farm in Dixmont Maine on a large horse drawn wagon. Ferguson sent one of his steam engineers over to Newton to learn how to operate one of these mechanical road machines as he called them. The engineer was to come to Maine to teach Ferguson how to operate the Stanley in private on the roads around the farm.
Ferguson was totally incompetent trying to operate the car. He went off the dirt roar into a plowed field and nearly tipped the car over. The safety went off for some reason and Ferguson ran from the car and fell into some fresh cow droppings. That was it. He told Oscar to put the dammed machine back in the barn.
The Stanley was in Oscar’s way trying to run the farm and finely one day he got out some rope and pulleys and hauled the Stanley into the rafters.
Ferguson went back to Boston and in his wheeling and dealing sold the farm. The new owner of the farm did not like Oscar, but Oscar having the reputation of being one of the best farmers around, and the farm being extremely productive under his management kept him on for the time being.
Now as it turned out Vesty Bean was not really Oscar mother but his much older step sister from his father’s first wife whom past at child birth. Vesty raised Oscar and was just referred by people as his mother. Pauline was not really Oscar’s wife but Vesty child from an affair with a married man after a church supper one night.
As time went buy the new owner learned the facts about Oscar and his family and just had to let him go.
Oscar went to Boston and back to work for Ferguson somewhere in one of his Laundries and the Stanley remained high in the rafters till some time in the 1960.
Some men were called in to do repair work to the roof of the barn. To their amazement they found this dusty old car hanging in the rafters. What a find, a very rare barn find of an original un-restored Stanley in excellent condition, and red in color, proving that Stanley did in fact make Stanley with red body’s, or did they?