The first automobile parade ever attempted in Milford was held last evening as the chief event of the fifth
day of Old Home Week, and was a conspicuous success in every detail. Seventeen machines of all
descriptions traversed the principal streets of this town and Hopedale for about an hour, led by the 16
horsepower Wayne touring car of W.D. Leahy, and tremendous crowds lined the streets admiring the
gaily decorated cars as they passed in review.
Thousands promenaded the old thoroughfare and the hum of voices mingled with hearty laughter
greeted the ear on every side. Visitors from far and near, escorted by their hosts of the week, made merry
during the evening and everywhere was good nature and the best of feeling. The parade formed at the
junction of Park and Congress streets with the right of the line near Congregational park.
Here many hundreds of spectators reviewed the big machines and admired the decorations.
Promptly at 7 o'clock the line was formed by Deputy Sheriff A.A. Jenkins and Chief John F. Damon of the
fire department and started on the line of march.
W.D. Leahy's machine was embellished with the national colors and four big headlights. With him were
Mrs. Leahy and Mr. and Mrs. Phillip Kimball.
George Otis Draper's powerful Winton car was second. Mr. Draper handled the levers. He was
accompanied by his chauffeur. [Draper was the son of General William F. and Lydia "Lilla" Draper. The
1904 town directory lists him as secretary of the Draper Company, living at William (and it doesn't say
Williams, as it is now) near Freedom.]
Harry D. Hayward of Franklin was third in line with his 24-horse power Locomobile. With Mr. Hayward
were Mr. and Mrs. Wendell Williams, Miss Edith Wires and Arthur Curtis of Franklin.
F.P. Lee with his 24-horse power Winton followed Mr. Hayward. Mr. Lee's car was profusely decorated
with goldenrod and he was costumed himself in "Uncle Sam" garb. His party consisted of Misses
Gertrude and Agnes Mann, Sadie Ayer of Providence and Irene Sweet, all dressed in the national colors.
Mr. Lee's turnout was the hit of the procession and was accorded much applause all along the line.
Howard W. Bracken of Hopedale handled his 20-horse power Winton car, accompanied by Masters
Bancroft and Allen Winsor of Fairhaven. (Bracken was the husband of Lilla Bancroft and the son-in-law of
Joseph and Sylvia Bancroft. The 1904 town directory lists Bracken as the Draper foundry superintendent,
living on Hopedale, near Peace.)
Dr. T.L. Martin of Franklin drove a 10-horse power White (steam) machine. His guests were Judge O.T.
Doe, Selectman H.W. Hosie and Editor C.B. Johnson.
Harold M. Curtiss drove his 20-horse power Winton, accompanied by Mrs. Curtiss, Mrs. Frank Cushing,
Miss Lillian Curtiss and Morgan Cushing.
Harry Welch's machine was also a 20-horse power Winton. With him were Mrs. Welch, Mrs. H.D. Bowker,
Miss Gertrude Welch and Master Grow Welch.
N.L. Huff handled his Stanley machine. In his party were Mrs. Huff, Miss Gertrude Huff, Miss Marion Huff,
Mrs. Joseph Miller and Mrs. Frank Wadman.
F.C. Lothrop was the chauffeur of the S.A. Eastman 7 ½-horse power Grout car. Mr. Lothrop, Mr.
Eastman, Mrs. G.C. Eastman and Mrs. E.D. Lothrop made up the party.
W.H. Bourne had the brakes on his 6-horse power Stanley, accompanied by Mrs. Bourne.
Dr. P.E. Joslin drove his 7 ½-horse power steamer. He was accompanied by Miss Mary Drugan of
Charlestown and Master Ned Drugan of this town.
Selectman B.M. Rockwood of Franklin had a 6-horse power Stanley machine, and carried with him Mrs.
Rockwood and daughter, Miss Grace Rockwood, Miss Bowles of Marlboro and Mrs. Kinglsey of Boston.
F.C. Hodgman of Hopedale had as his guests, besides Mrs. Hodgman, Mr. and Mrs. Bert Smith. [The
1904 directory lists Fred C. Hodgman as a Draper employee living at 46 Bancroft Park.]
F.A. Whipple with his Stanley was next, accompanied by Mrs. Whipple and Miss Dorcas Whipple.
F.A. Darling of Hopedale operated the levers for his party. With him were Mrs. Darling and Mr. and Mrs. E.
A. Darling. (Edwin Darling is listed in the town directory for 1904 as a machinist living on Freedom near
Prospect. He was a selectman for many years. There is no listing for an F.A. Darling but there is a Frank
G. Darling who was a foreman in the rubber spindle department and lived at 6 Freedom, corner of
Dutcher. The street numbers have changed. The lowest number in the 2016 List of Residents book is
14, and it's a bit below the Milford town line.)
Chief J.F. Damon, with Mrs. Damon and Miss Mildred Carpenter, in his Stanley machine, brought up the
C.E. Nutting and party joined the parade at Hopedale. (Charles E. Nutting was listed in the 1904 town
directory as general superintendent and director of Draper Company. House Dutcher ½ mile out. The
house number is now 190 Dutcher Street)
Many of the autos were decorated with flowers and all made a creditable showing. The line was as
follows: Congress to Water, to Church, to West, to Congress, to Park, to Main, down Main to the basin,
and then counter parade, Main to Adin street in Hopedale, to Dutcher, to Freedom, to Hopedale street, up
to Adin street, to Main street in Milford, to Congress, to Walnut, to Pearl, to Main, to the Congregational
church, where the procession was dismissed. Milford Daily News, Friday Evening, August 5, 1904.
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Ad from The Cosmopolitan for the 1904 Locomobile.
White steam car
The Grout steam car was made in Orange, Mass.
|Autos Whirled Around Milford and Hopedale
Ten Thousand People Crowded Main Street
Last Evening to Witness
The First Event of Kind
Ever Held Here