M. Armstrong & Co. - 1859-1920s - New Haven, Connecticut
Known New Haven body builder, built production bodies for the Long Island-produced F.R.P. automobile (1914)
The F.R.P. was a large European-style luxury car and was known to have been bodied by Brewster, Holbrook and Armstrong.
When the government took over the F.R.P.'s plant for war work, manufacture of the vehicle was halted and post war manufacturing was transferred to the American & British Manufacturing Company of New Haven Connecticut. Armstrong also bodied a few of the 36 Porters produced in their native New Haven from 1919-1922. Other Porters were bodied by Brewster, Demarest and Fleetwood.
The house of M. Armstrong & Co. was established by Montgomery Armstrong in 1859, who has continued as its head to the present time. The factory is most thoroughly equipped with such modern appliances as can be utilized in the building of a high grade of heavy carriages, which find a market in our large cities. And then few cities where such carriages are used when the products of this house cannot be found. Mr. Armstrong has associated with him his two sons, E. M. and E. L. The firm enjoy a high reputation, both as to style and quality of work and methods of business, which after all, is the secret of success.
M. Armstrong & Co. 433 Chapel St. New Haven, CT
Owner Montgomery Armstrong, home address (1897) 125 Humphrey St, New Haven, CT
In 1914, the Mercer automobile's T-head engine designer, Finley Robertson Porter, bought the former "the Only" automobile factory in Port Jefferson, New York to build his own dream car, the F.R.P. With a price tag of $5,000 for the car plus $5,000 for the coach by Brewster of Long Island City, the F.R.P. was beyond almost everyone's means.
After the Armistice, the F.R.P. was renamed the Porter. Richard's auto factory became a lace mill and was recently torn down.
J. T. Davies, foreman of construction and draftsman for the Crane & Breed, Mfg. Co., Cincinnati, Ohio, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in May, 1860, and learned his trade with Cooling Bros., Wilmington, Delaware. Later he worked in a number of small shops, engaging finally with Charles S, Caffrey Co., Camden, New Jersey, where he remained about three years.
He then went to New Hayen. Connecticut, and worked in the shops of William Johnson, Henry Killam Co. and M. Armstrong & Co., for seven years. Later on he worked with the United States Carriage Co., Columbus, Ohio; James Goold Co., Albany, New York; A. J. Joyce & Co., Washington; D. C.. and James Cunningham, Son & Co. Rochester, New York. He took charge of the hearse department of the Crane & Breed Mfg. Co. in 1899. He reorganized that department, and is still with it.
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