S.R. Bailey Carriage Company - 1856-1882 - Bath, Maine & Boston, Massachusetts - 1882-1910 - Amesbury, Massachusetts


The Bailey Carriage Company of Amesbury, Massachusetts not only built the bodies for Boston MA’s Essex (Essex Motor Car Co.) of 1906 but assembled them there as well, but the car did not survive the year.


S. R. Bailey, of S. R. Bailey & Co., was well known to the carriage trade as early as 1866, being connected with firms in Bath, Maine, and in Boston in 1878. In 1882 he came to Amesbury and established his business, and in 1887 admitted his son, E. W. M. Bailey, to partnership. For several years they made a specialty of carriage poles and high grade sleighs. A few years ago they added carriages of special make and design, and were the first to introduce the bicycle wheels. Their factory contains 30,000 feet of floor room, and is filled with machinery largely invented by Mr. Bailey for the prosecution of his varied work.


F.O. Bailey Carriage Co of Portland, Maine was an early (1902) Cadillac agent - probably unrelated.


The carriage business of Samuel R. Bailey which during the early 1900s was the largest of its kind in the East, began to manufacture auto bodies and automobiles in 1903. The Bailey Electric Victoria Phaeton was the best known product  of this old and noted firm. Here as in the firm of James N. Leitch, precise building methods for custom work were employed which required a great deal of time. The chief executive, S.R. Bailey, did not allow small mill machinery in his factory after it was invented, until it became necessary to do so in order to handle large automobile orders. Their victoria body was rather simple in con­struction, requiring less time to complete than did other bodies of the period, but the construction of their own electric-powered chassis was a very toilsome task. During the firm's interest in the auto business of the town, they employed thirty experienced body-makers. The business was located on two floors in Babcock's No.5 plant on Chestnut Street.


S.R. Baily & Co., 1856-1910, was a renowned buggy manufacturer, located at 12 Chestnut St., Ames­bury, Massachusetts. Their buggies and wagons were distributed by The French Carriage Co. of Boston, (see listing on The French Carriage Co.).

Edwin W.M. Bailey of S.R. Bailey & Co., who was president of the Carriage Builders National Associa­tion, was elected to the Board of Directors of The French Carriage Co. in 1900.

By 1907, the S.R. Bailey & Co. was manufacturing and selling the Elec­tric Victoria Phaeto automobile. The 1908 Bailey Electric Victoria Phaeton was exhibited at the Boston Auto Show. The batteries were supplied by Thomas Alva Edison.


    For more information please read:

John Bartley - Amesbury as a Body-Building Center – April 13, 1943 – Collection of the Amesbury Public Library

Orra L. Stone - History of Massachusetts Industries Vol I-IV - Boston, MA, S. J. Clarke Publishing Co. 1930

Beverly Rae Kimes - The Classic Car

Beverly Rae Kimes - The Classic Era

Beverly Rae Kimes - Packard: A History of the Motorcar and Company

Beverly Rae Kimes & Henry Austin Clark Jr. - Standard Catalog of American Cars 1805-1942

Richard Burns Carson - The Olympian Cars

Raymond A. Katzell - The Splendid Stutz

Marc Ralston - Pierce Arrow

Brooks T. Brierley - There Is No Mistaking a Pierce Arrow

Brooks T. Brierley - Auburn, Reo, Franklin and Pierce-Arrow Versus Cadillac, Chrysler, Lincoln and Packard

Brooks T. Brierley - Magic Motors 1930

Nick Georgano - The Beaulieu Encyclopedia of the Automobile: Coachbuilding

John Gunnell - Standard Catalog of American Cars, 1946-1975

James M. Flammang & Ron Kowalke - Standard Catalog of American Cars, 1976-1999

Daniel D. Hutchins - Wheels Across America: Carriage Art & Craftsmanship

Marian Suman-Hreblay - Dictionary of World Coachbuilders and Car Stylists

Michael Lamm and Dave Holls - A Century of Automotive Style: 100 Years of American Car Design

Thomas E. Bonsall - The Lincoln Motorcar: Sixty Years of Excellence

Fred Roe - Duesenberg: The Pursuit of Perfection

Arthur W. Soutter - The American Rolls-Royce

John Webb De Campi - Rolls-Royce in America

Hugo Pfau - The Custom Body Era

Hugo Pfau - The Coachbult Packard

Griffith Borgeson - Cord: His Empire His Motor Cars

Don Butler - Auburn Cord Duesenberg

George H. Dammann - 90 Years of Ford

George H. Dammann & James K. Wagner - The Cars of Lincoln-Mercury

Thomas A. MacPherson - The Dodge Story

F. Donald Butler - Plymouth-Desoto Story

Fred Crismon - International Trucks

George H. Dammann - Seventy Years of Chrysler

Walter M.P. McCall - 80 Years of Cadillac LaSalle

Maurice D. Hendry - Cadillac, Standard of the World: The complete seventy-year history

George H. Dammann & James A. Wren - Packard

Dennis Casteele - The Cars of Oldsmobile

Terry B. Dunham & Lawrence R. Gustin - Buick: A Complete History

George H. Dammann - Seventy Years of Buick

George H. Dammann - 75 Years of Chevrolet

John Gunnell - Seventy-Five Years of Pontiac-Oakland


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