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Empire Auto Company radiator emblem

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Empire Auto Company radiator emblem
Smithsonian Institution

IN CONTEXT

This object appears in the following sections:


Work and Industry
What is an emblem? — Introduction


Empire Auto Company radiator emblem
Catalog #: 325,528, Accession #: 260,303
Currently on display
From the Smithsonian Collection
Empire was a popular model name for automobiles with at least three different manufacturers producing Empires. The Little Aristocrat was a small two seater that sold for $950.
Physical Description

Dimensions (in mm): 6.3 L x 6.3 W x .4 D

Inscriptions: "THE LITTLE ARISTOCRAT EMPIRE EMPIRE AUTO CO. INDIANAPOLIS, U.S.A

Materials: metal

Colors: white, blue, silver

Details
Dates Used:
1909 - 1919
Locations:
Indiana
Note:
Indianapolis, Indiana
Credit:
Gift of Hubert G. Larson
History
Radiator emblems were colorful metal plates with a manufacturer's name or logo that attached to the radiators of early automobiles. Varying in shape and size, but never more than a few inches across, the emblems were small branding devices. As vehicles became more popular in a national market, people began associating the company name and logo on different vehicle models with a specific manufacturer. Radiator emblems sometimes indicated the type of engine or place of manufacturing. Other times they appealed directly to a driver’s sense of style and class by using iconic images or a catchy motto.
Related People, Places, and Events
Donor
Hubert G. Larson
In 1964 Hubert G. Larson donated a collection of 278 radiator emblems to the Smithsonian.


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