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King Motor Car Company radiator emblem

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King Motor Car Company radiator emblem
Smithsonian Institution

IN CONTEXT

This object appears in the following sections:


Work and Industry
What is an emblem? — American aristocracy


King Motor Car Company radiator emblem
Catalog #: 325,528, Accession #: 260,303
In collection
From the Smithsonian Collection
Although the King was named after its founder, Charles B. King, with prices ranging from $1,400 to $4,235, this was not a car for the average citizen.
Physical Description

Dimensions (in mm): 7.3 L x 6.1 W x 0.3 D

Inscriptions: KING MOTOR CAR CO. KING THE CAR OF NO REGRET DETROIT, MICH.

Materials: metal

Colors: gold, red, white

Details
Dates Used:
1910 - 1924
Locations:
Michigan
Note:
Detroit, Michigan
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.

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