• A very original example of a pre-First War Silver Ghost with light Salamanca coachwork
• Interesting history and in current ownership for over forty years
• Electric self-starter fitted from new
Chassis cards indicate that chassis number 14LB was on test 16th July 1914 and was initially destined for display at Olympia by Barkers with Limousine coachwork. The car’s specification is clearly detailed and includes Warland type artillery wheels, 20” radiator, a ‘plain’ L to E type bonnet and dash, B rake steering, 4 speed gearbox and nickel finish.
The chassis was constructed as above, however on 5th September 1914, it was dispatched to Liverpool for shipping to America and supplied via R.W. Schuette to Morton F. Plant Esq. of New York. Records also indicate that Ernest Caswell carried out road testing in New York ‘after having body fitted’ on 20th November 1914.
Morton F. Plant was a New York financier and the son of a railroad tycoon. He built two mansion houses in New York. The first, at 52nd Street, was completed in 1905 and is now also known as the Cartier Building. The second, at 86th Street, was built in 1916 and is now demolished. The 52nd Street building was designated a New York City landmark in 1970.
Today, 14LB carries light and attractive Salamanca coachwork by Frederick Wood & Sons (of New York). It is unclear if this is the coachwork fitted in 1914, however, it would seem very likely.
14LB also has an American Bosch self-starter as fitted, as do many cars supplied to America at this time (note this is long before starters were being fitted to cars for the home market). Interestingly, the original build cards requested the ‘gauges and hand pump were left loose’ and to ‘supply special gauge and longer connections’. Today, the car has a dashboard fitted, a feature becoming popular in America by this time. 14LB also has a ‘B’ rack steering box (as per its original build) but with a ‘D’ rake Column achieving a lower angle to the column.
The present owner acquired the car in 1979 via notable Ghost enthusiast Charles Howard. 14LB is pictured in Charles’s book ’An Auto Biography’ where it features looking as she stands today.
In summary, 14LB is an exciting opportunity to acquire an interesting and genuine pre-war Silver Ghost. The Frederick Wood Salamanca coachwork is extremely versatile providing lavish comfort for rear occupants with a fully lined hood and a disappearing glass division. Equally, the car can be arranged for ‘open touring’ when weather allows. Whilst 14LB is in good running order, it has been subject to little use in recent years, so we recommend some basic recommissioning work before commencing lengthy tours.