DUESENBERG, FREDERICK

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DUESENBERG, FREDERICK - TLS from the co-founder of the Duesenberg Automobile & Motors Co. recommending an engineer
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DUESENBERG, FREDERICK - TLS from the co-founder of the Duesenberg Automobile & Motors Co. recommending an engineer

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Urgent problems of mechanical design

 

DUESENBERG, FREDERICK. (1876-1932). Cofounder of the Duesenberg Automobile & Motors Co. TLS. (“Frederick S. Duesenberg”). 1p. 4to. Indianapolis, January 4, 1928. A letter of recommendation for Harrison Spencer, an engineer and former employee. Written on elaborate Duesenberg Automobile & Motors Co. stationery, headed with the gold eagle logo (and radiator ornament), two gold seals and the slogan “Built to outclass, outrun and outlast any car on the road.”

 

Mr. Harrison Spencer was in my employ for the most part of two years in engineering and drafting which required superior ability through urgent problems of mechanical design. I am pleased to advise that he has unusual originality and inventiveness and that he is a highly skilled draftsman, adhering to the best standards of design and engineering practices. Mr. Spencer’s work for me included both automotive engineering and tooling and his services rated the highest degree of excellence both as to quality of work and time required…

 

The Duesenberg Automobile & Motors Co., Inc. was established in Des Moines, Iowa in 1913 by two German-born immigrant brothers, Frederick and August Duesenberg, self-taught engineers who began their careers assembling racing bicycles and motorcycles. In 1919, they moved their headquarters to Indianapolis, Indiana and began to build passenger cars the following year.

 

The vehicles included numerous technical innovations and gained a reputation for speed, luxury and elegance. The Duesenberg, with its custom-built interior, was the favored car of the Hollywood elite, celebrities and royalty including Greta Garbo, Howard Hughes, Mae West, Clark Gable, Al Capone, and the Duke of Windsor. Duesenbergs won the Indianapolis 500 in 1924, 1925 and 1927 as well as the 1921 French Grand Prix, a fact emblazoned at the top of our letterhead. Until the 1960s, the Duesenberg remained the only American car ever to have won the French Grand Prix. The colloquialism “it’s a doozy” purportedly derives from the iconic vehicle.

 

Despite ongoing manufacturing difficulties and numerous organizational challenges, the company produced four different models between 1921 and 1937, including the now rare Model X, produced from 1926-1927 and the Model J, produced from 1928-1937.

 

Boldly signed in dark blue ink and folded into thirds. Several staple holes in the upper left corner. Normal wear and in fine condition. Duesenberg is uncommon, particularly on his ornate stationery.

 

 

 

Item #19088

Duesenberg Model J, produced from 1928-1937

 


 

Duesenberg Model J, produced from 1928-1937

 

Duesenberg hood ornament and logo

$1,600


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