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Bellamore Armored Car & Equipment Co.
Bellamore Armored Car & Equipment Co., 1910-1913; New York, New York; 1912-1913, Bridgeport, Connecticut
Associated Firms
Bridgeport Vehicle Co.; Blue Ribbon Body Co.

David Havelock Bellamore was a British-born businessman and inventor, who became famous in 1910 when he introduced the first purpose-built, mass-produced armored motor car. The novel vehicle was equipped with a steel safe-deposit vault, electric burglar alarms and armored protection for both the driver and cashier. Built on a sturdy forward control 20 h.p. 2-cylinder Autocar chassis, the body was constructed of chromium steel and was said to be both bullet and fire-proof.

Bellamore was not unfamiliar with the needs of bankers, serving as a salesman in the Manhattan office of the Mosler Safe Co., 373-375 Broadway. It is believed that the Mosler brothers, Moses and William, supplied financial assistance to Bellamore for the prototype which was, not surprisingly equipped with a large Mosler safe. During the ensuing years Bellamore and the Mosler’s were involved in a handful of business ventures (Standard Ordinance Corp. &c.) and in the early twenties Bellamore became Assistant Secretary, and later Secretary of the Mosler Safe Co. During the buildup to the First World War he served as Export Director of the Otto Armleder Co., a Cincinnati-based manufacturer of heavy trucks. In the thirties he served as Export Manager and later Director of the Export Division of the Republic Steel Corporation, whose office was located in New York City’s Chrysler Building.

In addition to his expertise in the Export business, Bellamore was also a prolific inventor, holding 14 US patents, mostly relating to armored cars, safes and disc wheels, a couple of which were assigned to the Standard Ordinance Corp. of New York and the Mosler Safe Co. of Cincinnati & Hamilton, Ohio.

According to David H. Bellamore’s draft card, he was born in London, England* on June 23, 1885 to David Gordon (b. 1857 in Scotland) and Emily Byrne (b. 1859 in India) Bellamore. (*Some U.C. Census’ list Austria-presumed to be Australia – as his place of birth). His father, who it is assumed served in his Majesty’s service, first visited the United States in 1866, and after numerous trans-Atlantic and Pacific journeys, established a residence in Australia, where his son, David H., was born in 1886. A daughter, Muriel, was born at about the same time and a third child, Vivian, was born in the British colony in 1902. The family visited the Unites States in 1890, and in 1899, establishing a permanent residence in New York City.

According to US immigration records, the junior Bellamore made numerous trans-Atlantic and Caribbean journeys during the teens and twenties, no doubt related to his involvement in the import-export business.

Bellamore married Muriel Kendall (b. 1889-d. 1957) the daughter of George Henry (b. 1854 -d. Apr 24, 1924) and Hattie L. (b.1864) Kendall, and to the blessed union was born a son, Kendall Bellamore, born in 1914.

Bellamore’s father-in-law was a well-known Manhattan ‘character’ who in 1913 famously accused New York State Senator Stephen J. Stilwell (from the Bronx) of official misconduct, when Stilwell demanded $250 in order to sponsor a bill in the N.Y. State Senate. The bill in question was the result of Kendall’s fight against the New York Stock Exchange who steadfastly refused to list companies with securities that were engraved by his firm, the New York Bank Note Co. (formerly Kendall Bank Note Co.)

The New York Stock Exchange’s position, as stated in the March 10, 1913 issue of the New York Times follows:

“The New York Stock Exchange issued yesterday, through William C. Van Antwerp, a statement in reply to attacks made on it by George H. Kendall, President of the New York Bank Note Company, in which it accuses him of falsehood and defends the exclusion from listing of securities engraved by him on the ground of his ‘character.’”

Although Kendall’s testimony was never refuted, Stilwell remained in the Senate after the Judiciary Committee voted him ‘not guilty’ by a 28 to 21 margin. However Stilwell was subsequently indicted, convicted, and sentenced to two years in prison upon substantially the same evidence as that upon which a majority of his colleagues in the State Senate had acquitted him.

Manhattan directories list David H. Bellamore, as a member of the Mosler Safe Company, 373-375 Broadway, New York. Founded in 1867 by Gustav Mosler (and Fred Bahman) as the Mosler-Bahman Safe Co., in 1890 the firm relocated from Cincinnati to a new 300,000 sq. ft. facility in Hamilton, Ohio. By that time it had been reorganized as the Mosler Safe & Lock Co., and was controlled by Gustav’s two surviving sons, Moses and William - a third brother named Julius had passed away in 1890.

The Bellamore Armored Car & Equipment Co. was incorporated under Delaware laws in July, 1910, with a capital stock of $100,000. Officers were as follows; Pres., David H. Bellamore; Vice-Pres., William F. Dutton; Treasurer, Silas G. Cummings; Secretary & Manager, David G. Bellamore. The partners constructed a prototype on a circa 1910 Autocar Type XXI forward control 1 ˝ ton chassis with a 97”wheelbase which was equipped with a 20-h.p. 2-cylinder engine. The coachwork was completed during the summer and photographs of the vehicle were first published in the November 3, 1910 issue of The Automobile:

“Steel Bank Cars – Illustrating the Bellamore Armored Motor Car for use by Banks in the transfer of funds. Equipped with perfect banking facilities and protected by heavy bolts and locks.

“FUNDS must be transferred by banks, trusts and express companies by day and by night through all parts of congested cities, and heretofore it has been more or less of a serious problem with a considerable cost feature and a measure of safety that is barely up to the minimum requirement, with here and there an attack and a contingent loss. The Bellamore armored car as here illustrated represents the latest endeavor in the direction of filling this want in a more efficacious way. The plan takes into account the mobility of automobiles, coupled with the carrying capacity of an automobile truck, thus making it possible to build and mount upon the chassis a form of armored steel body that will permit of the transfer of funds and valuables generally with the same safety that now surrounds money as it rests in the vaults of the banks.

“The new car is so designed as to possess substantially all the facilities of a first-class bank, with every safeguard against even a protracted effort on the part of those who prefer not to work for what they get. The windows, doors and other points of attack are protected by electric burglar alarms; the walls and roof are built of steel and the construction throughout is fireproof. It is anticipated that this new form of traveling bank will enlarge the field of bankers' operations, making it possible to deliver pay rolls under the most conservative conditions and to collect and transfer valuables, covering considerable distances, and doing all the work at a lower cost than that which is now suffered, counting, of course, the men who must be placed to guard those who are in charge of this character of undertaking.

“The interior of the car has a banking room, including a large steel safe, the door of which is equipped with a heavy bolt-work system, with a Yale bank combination lock capable of 100,000,000 changes. A desk, or counter, extends for the full width of the car under the cashier's window. To the right and left underneath the desk is arranged a series of compartments which can be used for the storage of books and other articles necessary in the transaction of the business to which the car is devoted. The walls and floors are finished with polished hardwood. An electric lighting system is used; storage batteries provide the electric energy; the windows are fitted with bevel plate glass, and the doors are equipped with special duplicate key latch locks with alarm bells attached operated electrically from the batteries.

“The driver occupies the customary position at the front, there being a separating wall between the driver's position and the bank proper, but, as the illustrations show, the driver is protected from the dangers of inclement weather by means of wind shields and side panels, so that while he is not expected to do more than drive the car, he is afforded sufficient protection to render his lot reasonably comfortable.

“There are three distinct models of this car, each being designed for a particular service, and they range in price from $4,500 to $6,000. The motor car bank idea was taken up abroad some time ago, and it was found to be a profitable equipment, broadening the activities of the banks and adding very materially to the safety of operations at the same time. There is no reason why this idea should not thrive in the American money centers, and the Bellamore Armored Car & Equipment Company, of 286 Fifth avenue, New York, is making preparation to enter this business in a substantial way, and it has excellent promise of support from important banks.”

Pictures accompanied by the following descriptive text appeared in the December, 1910 issue of The Commercial Vehicle:

“A further development of the bank motor wagon is shown in the accompanying view of a machine which has been designed by the Bellamore Armored Car Equipment Company of New York not only for the transfer of valuables but for use as a traveling bank or pay car. The special body is built on a standard gas motor chassis and is of steel throughout. The interior of the vehicle is fitted up as a cashier's office and the equipment includes a large safe and a counter under a window which opens in the rear. There is a covered extension at the back of the vehicle so that a person can step up in front of the window and transact business. In front a cab and windshield protect the driver. The body is finely finished in hardwood inside and is lighted by electricity.”

A significantly longer article appeared in the December 1910 issue of Trust Companies:


“While there has been some talk about the extravagance due to the too general use of the automobile, yet it is a fact that the motor vehicle for commercial purposes has proven a great boon to all lines of business. Not the least of these are the many advantages to banking, and the requirements in this field are such that a specially constructed motor car has been built, by the Bellamore Armored Car Co., of No. 286 Fifth avenue, New York, that is certainly unique, as it contains all the conveniences of a banking room, with the necessary safeguards for handling large sums of money, securities, collecting deposits, delivering pay-rolls, etc., and the conveniences which this new banking adjunct discloses make it certain that we are on the eve of its general adoption.

“The need of independent banking facilities actually necessary or fancied has been a moving cause for the establishment of thousands of small banks throughout the United States. Local pride always optimistic, is particularly susceptible when agitation for a new bank is begun. It is found, however, in many cases that after the bank is started the need for it was not so great as had been imagined. Frequently such banks are organized for no other direct purpose than to afford commissions to promoters.

“There are scattered all over the country small institutions which not only fail to pay expenses, but which by inexperienced management do not add to its banking strength. In hundreds of instances one bank is needed where a dozen exist. In most of these cases lack of easy communication with a convenient center has brought about the establishment of banks which have no other excuse for organization.

“In the near future, however, this condition will be changed largely through the introduction of the bank on wheels, which will give elasticity to the head office, enabling it to cover a large territory and place at the convenience of its customers at a distance a service equal to that in command of its clients who are within a stone s throw of the bank. In other words, the "bank on wheels" will act as a travelling branch bank.

“Not only will the armored motor bank car be used in rural communities, but it will be taken up by city institutions who are desirous of securing the deposits of factories and other centers of industry, delivering pay-rolls, collecting large deposits and securing the savings of the employees.

“The banks of the country will not give up without a struggle deposits which may otherwise be diverted to the coming postal savings institutions. This is an age of directness, frankness and simplicity in business matters, those who want business must go after it frankly and openly. If the business will not come to the banks voluntarily they must be prepared to go where the business exists.

“The motor bank car will not only place the bankers in a position to secure this business, but will be the means of educating the public concerning the merits of their institutions, bringing them in closer and more intimate terms with their customers, at the same time giving them a large and continuous amount of publicity in a strong, conservative and dignified manner.

“This is what the manufacturers say of the Bellamore armored motor bank car:

"The motor bank car is an armored steel vehicle, protected by a patented system of electric alarms. Should the car be attacked at any point, either by drilling, wedging, cutting or annealing the steel walls, or the steel grill work protecting the windows, a powerful alarm is instantly set in motion which can be heard at a great distance. This electric burglar alarm is constructed on the same lines and principles as the electric alarm protection used on the largest bank and safe deposit vaults in this country. Apart from the security given by the electric alarms, the construction of the car provides ample resistance from any burglarious attack. The walls and roof are built of steel, hardened insulating material and hard wood. The body is also fireproof and would not burn in any fire that may occur in a garage, etc.

“The car body is an enclosed structure divided into two distinct sections, the front compartment for the driver and a passenger, the rear containing the banking room. A door on the right hand side opening outwardly gives access to this section. This door is suspended on heavy steel spring hinges which automatically close and lock the door. At the rear of the car a handsomely designed vestibule is found, which serves to give privacy and protection to the customers while transacting business. The windows of the banking room are equipped with electrified steel grill work, also the dividing partition between the two sections.

“The interior arrangement of the banking room includes a large steel safe, the door being equipped with a heavy bolt work system, checked by a Yale bank combination lock, capable of 100,000,000 changes. A desk or counter extending the full width of the car under the cashier's window, contains the money drawers. To the right and left underneath is arranged a series of compartments. An electric storage battery lighting system is part of the equipment, and there is a system of electric signals, so that the messenger can communicate with the driver without leaving his seat.

“The cashier's window is located at the back of the car at a convenient height from the floor. Steel shutters electrically protected cover the window on the outside, opening and closing automatically by means of a device operated from the inside of the car. Electric gongs proclaim any attempt to tamper with the car. These devices permit of the car standing without attendance, for the moment the vehicle is tampered with the electric alarms are set going.

“In addition to the above, the company manufactures a car of the limousine type, possessing the same safety features and combination. This car is finished equal to the highest class private car, with a seating capacity for five passengers if desired. The safe extends across the front of the interior of the car, and is covered with mahogany, to match the interior fittings. Thus the top of the safe forms a convenient desk for the use of the officer in charge of the car.

“Bank cars are being used with success in Great Britain, where it is said the banks realize the advantages to be gained from the use of such a car."

In The Hub’s review of the Madison Square Garden Automobile Show published in the February 1911 issue the mentioned the Bellamore, which was built upon an Autocar cab over engine (COE)chassis:

“In the Autocar exhibit was shown the Bellamore armored motor bank car, something quite novel in the way of a pay car. The Autocars proper were of some variety of body design. The stated claims are: By the location of the driver's set over the motor, a maximum body platform with a minimum wheel base is attained. This arrangement insures greater accessibility of the power plant the complete seat structure being hinged for easy access to motor. We emphasize the fact that the cars described are in no sense adaptations of pleasure cars but are special both in design and material with the single end in view of continuously meeting with the utmost economy in fuel and maintenance the hard service that will be exacted.”

Apparently the prototype remained unsold for close to a year, its sale formally announced in the following article taken from the December, 1911 issue of Banker’s Magazine:

“The Uses of an Armored Bank Car

“Reproduced herewith is an illustration showing in detail the interior construction of the armored bank car built for the First Mortgage Guarantee & Trust Company of Philadelphia, Leslie M. Shaw president, by the Bellamore Armored Car & Equipment Company of 286 Fifth Avenue, New York.

“The interior arrangement of the banking room includes a large steel safe which can be built to suit the uses of the bank operating it. A desk or counter extending the full width of the car under the cashier's window contains the money drawers. To the right and left underneath is arranged a series of compartments which can be used for the storage of books and other articles necessary in the transaction of the business which will be conducted from the car.

“The vestibule is so designed as to allow but one person on it at a time Folding gates opening inwardly are provided at the rear. The platform is approximately fourteen inches from the ground bringing the customers within easy reach of the cashier's window. The roof of the car extends over this vestibule giving protection from the weather and lending symmetry to the general design of the car.

“As shown in the illustration, the cashier's window is located at the back of the car at a convenient height from the floor. Steel shutters electrically protected cover the window on the outside opening and closing automatically by means of a device operated from the inside of the car. A steel grille is fitted into the window opening leaving a space of four inches at the lower part through which business transactions and the handling of money can be made.

“Nothing has been overlooked for the perfect protection and safety of the car its contents and of those who are in charge of the vehicle. The body structure of the car is completely and thoroughly protected by a patent system of electric alarms. Should the car be attacked at any point, either by drilling, wedging, cutting or annealing the steel walls or the steel grille work protecting the windows and partitions etc., a powerful alarm gong is instantly set in motion which can be heard at a great distance.

“The frame work is made of armored wood re-enforced with a finishing plate of hard wood on the inside. The linings constructed of alternate layers of tempered steel hardened insulating material and electrified plates are attached to the armored frame. The sides dividing partition between the two compartments back and roof are all constructed in this manner giving absolute protection and great strength. The floor of the banking room is further re enforced with a heavy tempered steel plate lending stability and rigidness to the car. Over this plate is a flooring of hard wood.

“The steel grille work protecting the windows and dividing partition between the driver's and banking compartment is of a special construction which insures absolute protection instantaneously giving warning of an attack either by cutting bending or burning.

“The car affords the banker the same degree of security as can be found in the strongest burglar proof vaults built. One of the many devices is an arrangement whereby the car can be locked up and left standing without attendance and should a person other than those in charge of the vehicle attempt to “tamper with or operate it. He would not only fail to gain entrance but immediately set the alarms and warn the owners and the surrounding neighborhood. Such a car may be used for the collection of heavy deposits, the delivery of pay roll money to factories, the delivery of large sums of money to customers, the transportation of bullion, the carrying of money and securities between branch institutions and the collection and delivery of valuables for safe deposit.”

Bellamore’s directors were eager to put the armored car into series production and in January 1912 they entered into negotiations with the receiver of the Bridgeport Vehicle Co., a manufacturer of production Locomobile bodies whose factory was located at the corner of Fairfield and Holland Avenues, in Bridgeport, Connecticut. The June, 1912 issue of Banker’s Magazine reported on the culmination of the talks:


“The Bellamore Armored Car and Equipment Co., Fifth av., New York, has recently purchased a complete factory at Bridgeport, Conn., a cut of which is shown herewith, in which it will manufacture its armored cars for banks besides bodies of all kinds for automobiles. The Bellamore Co. has recently sent one of its armored cars to the Spanish Bank of Cuba and will install several more cars for use by the Havana banks at an early date. The car purchased by the First Mortgage Guarantee and Trust Co of Philadelphia has given complete satisfaction and has resulted in a large increase in the business of that institution.”

Although the preceding article seems to contradict earlier histories of the firm that state only a single armored truck was completed, no pictures of the ‘armored cars’ sent to Cuba have been located, so their appearance can only be guessed at. The photographs displayed to the right show the same Autocar-chassised vehicle with numerous bank names added by a photo retoucher somtime after the vehiclke was opriginally photographed.

The firm's literature stated the vehicles were available on a choice of either a 20-h.p. or 40-h.p. chassis, although no manufacturer was given for either the chassis or the engine. Nomenclature  was confusing with models including the Type I, Type II, Type III and Type IV. Within Types there were distinct options, all available on either the 20- or 40-h.p. chassis.

The suffux V.C. as in 20-h.p. Type II V.C. referred to a Vestibule Car, a bank car outfitted with a vestibule-style walk-up banking window. It inlcuded a covered rear platform upon which the customer would interact with the teller located inside the secure rear compartment.

The suffix B.L. as in 20-h.p. Type II B.L. referred to Bank Limousine, whose totally enclosed rear compartment was used solely for the transportation of money and/or bank officials from one banking location to another.

No more mention of the firm appeared during 1912, save for the following mention in the Commercial Car Journal:

“Bellamore Armored Car and Equipment Co. so that it might have greater facilities for building bodies, is moving into the new building.”

It is believed that under Bellamore's control the Bridgeport factory continued to porduce production bodies for Locomobile, although confirmation is lacking. Although the firm's armored car was well publicized at the time of its creation, the publicity failed to bring in additional orders, in late February of 1913 the receivers were called ini, the March 1, 1913 issue of Automobile Topics rerporting:

“Armored Car in Hands of Receiver

“Upon application of three of its smaller creditors, whose claims aggregate less than $600, Judge Hand, of the United States District Court, on Wednesday, February 26, appointed Job E. Hedges receiver for the Bellamore Armored Car & Equipment Co., of Bridgeport, Conn. The company has offices at 258 Fifth avenue, New York City. Its assets are given as $147,813, but a considerable part of this amount is said to be of only nominal value; the liabilities are said to be in excess of $150,000, the exact amount being unknown. The assets include the factory at Bridgeport, assessed at $64,000; machinery and plant, $19,950; tools and equipment, $4,828; lumber and other raw materials, $31,498; merchandise in process of manufacture, $14,890; accounts, $12,000, some of which are doubtful or uncollectable; and office furniture. $647. The receiver is under a bond of $20,000, and has authority to continue the business for sixty days and to borrow $3,000 on receiver's certificates to pay current expenses.

“The Bellamore Armored Car & Equipment Co. was incorporated under Delaware laws in July, 1910, with a capital stock of $100,000; it never was rated in Bradstreet's or Dun's. Its product consisted of steel armored motor cars for banks and paymasters, the chassis for these cars being made for the company by several of the automobile companies. It took over the plant of the Bridgeport Vehicle Co. and for a time seemed to have a bright future. Litigation over mortgages on the factory, however, and lack of sufficient working capital hampered its production to such an extent as to cause its present embarrassment. David H. Bellamore is president, and David G. Bellamore, treasurer.”

The “Minor Business Troubles” column of the April 10, 1913 issue of Motor Age provided the dollar amounts the firm included in its filing:

“The Bellamore Armored Car & Equipment Co., of New York City and Bridgeport, Conn., which was the object of a petition in bankruptcy last month, has filed its schedules in the Federal court in New York City. They show liabilities of $103,020 and nominal assets of $217,658. Among the creditors are: Bronx National Bank, of New York City, $19,286; City Savings Bank, of Bridgeport, $24,000; H. D. Miller, trustee, $7,500; Horton & Terry, $5,000; Standard Oil Co., of Bridgeport, $281.”

The April 26, 1913 issue of Automobile Topics reported on the results of a meeting of the firm’s creditors:

“Bellamore Creditors Hold Meeting

“At the meeting of the creditors of the Bellamore Armored Car & Equipment Co., of 258 Fifth avenue, New York City and Bridgeport Conn., the liabilities of the company were stated to be $103,020 and the assets $217,658. Job E. Hedges who had been appointed receiver has been elected trustee under a bond of $15,000.”

A concurrent issue (April 1913) of the Automobile Trade Journal stated the former Bellamore plant already been sold:

“Bellamore Armored Car & Equipment Company's plant at Fairfield and Holland Avenues, Bridgeport, Conn., has been purchased by the Blue Ribbon Auto & Garage Company. The new owners will take possession September 1st, when a large addition will be erected.”

Harry D. Miller, the founder and president of the Bridgeport Vehicle Co., the former occupants of the Bridgeport plant, filed suit against its new owners, the September 10, 1913 issue of the Horseless Age reporting:

“Details of Bridgeport Vehicle Co. Law Suit.

“In our issue of August 27, under head of "Sues Bankrupt Concern for Note," we reported the institution of a suit against the Bridgeport Vehicle Co. and the Blue Ribbon Auto and Carriage Co. Fearing that the headline might cause someone to infer that they were bankrupt the Blue Ribbon Auto and Carriage Co. have sent us the following details regarding their connection with the suit, which we are glad to publish:

“The Bridgeport Vehicle Co. was in bankruptcy and receivers' hands some time in 1910 and 1911, and sold all their rights, title and interest, in their factory, plant and property of every description to the Bellamore Armored Car and Equipment Company in January, 1912. The Bellamore Company conducted the business for about a year, and sometime in February, 1913, they were adjudicated as bankrupt, and Job E. Hedges, of New York, was appointed trustee. Sometime in June, 1913, the United States District Court, with the confirmation of all the creditors, sold the equity in this property through Trustee Hedges to the Blue Ribbon Auto and Carriage Co. for cash, they assuming all liens against the property, but not including any unsecured claims. Since taking possession, the Blue Ribbon Company have paid off one mortgage of about eight thousand dollars and paid up back interest and taxes. The mortgage in question had been in dispute by the officials of the former Bridgeport Vehicle Company for some time prior to the transfer of the property. The Blue Ribbon Company stand ready to pay this mortgage, and have the money in the bank for that purpose, as soon as the courts decide the exact amount, if any, is due.”

The Bridgeport Body Co. resumed the manufacture of Locomobile bodies and remained profitable into the late teens. Harry D. Miller, Bridgeport Vehicle’s former president, remained convinced that there was money to be found, and according to the May 18, 1918 issue of the Bridgeport Telegram, once again sued to recover his lost assets:

“Miller Again Acts to Get Receiver for Vehicle Firm; Claims Right to Have Stock Appraised — Decision Is Reserved.

“On the ground that he is entitled to have the value of his stock in the Bridgeport Vehicle company appraised, Harry D. Miller, former president of the concern, asked Judge Kellogg in the Civil Superior court yesterday to appoint a receiver for the concern. He was represented by Attorney Thomas M. Cullinan, who contended that Miller, as a minority stockholder, was entitled to have his interests protected.

“Other Receivers Discharged.

“Attorney James A. Marr, representing the Vehicle company, said Miller had previously brought numerous suits because of the company's tangled affairs and that none of these actions had resulted in victory for Miller. He said that Miller and John T. King had acted at various times as receivers for the company. Both had been discharged and Attorney Marr contended there was no need for a new receiver.

“The Bridgeport Vehicle company was located in 1911 at Fairfield and Holland avenues but when it went into the hands of a receiver in 1912 the company's assets were sold to the Bellamore Armored Car and Equipment company of New York. Although there has been a great deal of litigation regarding the Vehicle company, its affairs have never been wound up. So it still exists in name, if in nothing else. Judge Kellogg reserved decision on the motion.”

David H. Bellamore held no similar grudges, and on September 25, 1913 founded another automobile-related firm, the Bellamore Toomey Co. ‘to deal in motor cars etc.’ Capitalized at $30,000 under New York laws, its officers and stockholders included David G. and David H. Bellamore both of 29 Clairmont avenue, and Thomas H. Toomey of 3020 Broadway, New York, New York.

The formation of the firm was announced in the September 27, 1913 issue of Automobile Topics:

“Bellamore Forms Car Export Firm

“D.G. Bellamore, formerly manager of the Bellamore Armored Car Co., has formed the Bellamore, Toomey Co., Inc., and opened offices at 10 Bridge street, New York City. According to the letterhead of the company it plans to export pleasure and commercial cars.”

No additional news concerning the Bellamore Toomey Company was forthcoming and Polk’s 1915 New York co-partnership and corporation directory lists the Bellamore, Toomey Co., Inc., as ‘inoperative’.

During the entire Bridgeport fiasco, David H. Bellamore remained in the employ of the Mosler brothers and in 1915 the trio formed a partnership to manufacture munitions called the Standard Ordinance Corp. Polk’s 1915 New York co-partnership and corporation directory list the firm as follows:

“The Standard Ordinance Corporation, N.Y. Moses Mosler, Pres.; David H. Bellamore, Sec. Capital $5.000 Directors: Moses Mosler & William Mosler, David H. Bellamore; 377 B’way Rm. 1104.”

In the years immediately preceding the country’s involvement in the First World War, Mosler’s Hamilton, Ohio factory manufactured massive gun carriages and other implements of war.

In 1917 Bellamore’s former partner, Thomas H. Toomey formed another export business, their listing in Polk’s 1917 directory follows:

“The Bourne-Toomey Co., 50 Broad Street, New York. Established 1917; President, Thomas H. Toomey; Secretary, Charles A. Burr; Treasurer, Thomas H. Bourne. Export auto trucks, foodstuffs and general merchandise.”

In 1917 David H. Bellamore took a hiatus from the Mosler Co. to serve as export sale manager for the Otto Armleder Company of Cincinnati, Ohio a well-known manufacturer of heavy duty wagons, trailers and motor trucks, his appointment announced in the November 14, 1917 issue of Motor World:

“David H. Bellamore has been appointed manager of export sales by the O. Armleder Co., Cincinnati.”

The position was short lived and by 1921 he returned to the Mosler Safe & Lock Co., serving as the firm’s Secretary. His marriage to Muriel Kendall was dissolved in Reno, Nevada on December 10, 1932, and in 1934 he was appointed general export manager of the Republic Steel Co., whose general offices were located in Manhattan’s Chrysler Building.

The November 22, 1955 Massillon (Ohio) Evening Independent announced his appointment as director of Republic’s International Projects Division:

“New Republic Division Aids Foreign Firms

“The formation by Republic Steel Corp. of an International Projects Division to handle increasing demands from foreign industries for technical, engineering and manufacturing know-how was announced by Norman W. Foy, Republic's sales vice-president.

“The new division will have as its director David H. Bellamore; who will be in charge of its operations through its offices in the Chrysler building, New York City. Bellamore has been Republic's general export manager in charge of export business since the department was formed in 1934.”

The January 3, 1961 issue of the same newspaper (Massillon Evening Independent) announced his retirement:

Republic Steel Corp. and its Berger division in Canton today announced two appointments. Harold R. Stephan was appointed managing director of the corporation's international projects division and David A. Bordner was named Detroit sales representative for the Berger division. Stephan’s appointment was announced by T. F. Fatten, president and chief executive officer of Republic. He succeeds David H. Bellamore, who has been manager of the division since its inception in 1956 and prior to that served as general export manager of the company.”

During his working career Bellamore was awarded 14 US Patents, which are listed below:

US Pat. 1027978, Automobile Bank-Vehicle - Filed Aug 30, 1910 - Issued May 28, 1912

US Pat. 1182885, Portable Bank Safe - Filed Oct 16, 1909 - Issued May 16, 1916

US Pat. 1182886, Armored Protector for Motor Vehicle Radiators - Filed Mar 17, 1915 - Issued May 16, 1916

US Pat. 1203962, Armored Vehicle - Filed Oct 24, 1914 - Issued Nov 7, 1916

US Pat. 1385357, Method of Making Piston Pins - Filed Aug 22, 1919 - Issued Jul 26, 1921

US Pat. 1410986, Disk Wheel - Filed Nov 10, 1921 - Issued Mar 28, 1922

US Pat. 1422408, Improved Rim Construction for Steel Wheels - Filed Aug 22, 1919 - Issued Jul 11, 1922

US Pat. 1423747, Method of Making Pressed Steel Vehicle Wheels - Filed Sep 15, 1919 - Issued Jul 25, 1922

US Pat. 1485360, Improvements in Metallic Structures (Safes) - Filed Jul 7, 1921 - Issued Mar 4, 1924

US Pat. 1485363, Safe Construction – Filed May 16, 1922 - Issued Mar 4, 1924

US Pat. 1547720, Construction of Safes, Safe Cabinets - Filed Jun 7, 1923 - Issued Jul 28, 1925

US Pat. 1558458, Pressed Steel Wheel - Filed Aug 22, 1919 - Issued Oct 27, 1925

US Pat. 1623155, Metallic Structure (Safe) - Filed Jul 14, 1923 - Issued Apr 5, 1927

US Pat. 1846079, Disk Wheel - Filed Oct 19, 1926 - Issued Feb 23, 1932

David H. Bellmore passed away in New York City on January 12, 1969 at the age of 84.

© 2012 Mark Theobald -


On October 30, 1908, David H. Bellamore’s sister Muriel married Lieutenant Harry Cahoon, of the Thirteenth United States infantry. Unbeknownst to her, Lt. Cahoon was a known philanderer, and their happy home was soon disrupted by scandal, as reported in the Saturday, May 10, 1913 edition of the (NY) Evening Telegram:

“Left Bride Hour After Marriage — Army Officer's Wife Says He Spent Evening with Divorcee— She Gets Decree.

“After hearing her story of how her husband, Lieutenant Harry Cahoon, of the Thirteenth United States infantry, left her side an hour or so after they were married to spend  the evening with some friends, including a fair divorcee. Justice Guy, in the Supreme Court, to-day awarded a final decree of divorce to Mrs. Muriel Bellamore Cahoon. The woman she named was Mrs. Beatrice McGregor. His excuse when he appeared before his bride the next morning was that some army friends had ‘kidnapped’ him.  The bride believed this for several weeks.

“Mrs. Cahoon is a handsome young woman. She said that about two years ago, just after she left school at Twickenham, England, she met Lieutenant Cahoon, who then was stationed at Fort Sam Houston, Texas. They were married some time later.

“Almost immediately after the ceremony she says, her husband left her to see some friends. She waited in vain all night and was almost distracted. When the lieutenant appeared he told how his army friends had ‘kidnapped’ him and kept him away from his bride. He was forgiven and had luncheon with his bride. He told her he had a great 'business opportunity’ if he started at once for Havana, and if it was as good as he thought he would resign from the Army. After luncheon, she says, he raised some money and started for Cuba at once. For a month or so she got a letter in every mail north. Then she started South and on arriving in Havana, she says, found that he and an American girl had been living together in a house in one of the suburbs.

“In the meantime her father, who is President of the Bellamore Armored Car and Equipment Company, at No. 288 Fifth Avenue, had been investigating the ‘kidnapping’ and had learned about the divorcee.

“Lieutenant Cahoon denied that he had given his bride any cause for divorce, but after a year she brought a suit, which was uncontested.”







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

Bernard J. Weis - Dollars at Your Doorstep: Mr. Bellamore's Bank-On-Wheels, Special Interest Autos #81, June 1984 issue.

PROCEEDINGS OF THE Judiciary Committee of the Senate In the Matter of the Investigation Demanded by SENATOR STEPHEN J STILWELL STATE OF NEW YORK. Pub. 1913

Gustavus Myers - The History of Tammany Hall, pub. 1917

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