Mounted Accessories

Just wondering if anyone has seen a T with a drivers side rear fender marker light like the below picture. This is on my car. When my Dad and I restored the car, the original one was roached out. We were very fortunate that a friend of ours went to Hershey and found a NOS one to replace it.

Also wondering about an emblem that is mounted in the centre of the front bumper. My thought was that whom ever the original owner was that this was possibly something family related. Perhaps initials some kind of family mark. Thoughts?

Those were required by law in Washington DC for the 1920’s. You can find lots of photos of T’s and other cars from the era at

I had several NOS ones that I sold over the years at Chickasha.

Example - this is an Auburn touring but same lamp installed.

It appears similar, please correct me if I’m wrong but the lenses on the Auburn light don’t seem to be domed( for lack of a better term). I don’t see them pointing out the front or rear. Doesn’t mean that they don’t, just I’m not seeing them. And it being Washington law, makes me wonder about my car being Canadian, would it be a legal reason for it, would it be cosmetic, or just it was an aftermarket accessory that the owner thought was cool. That being said, of any of the Model T’s that I have seen here in Canada, I’ve not seen this light on any of them. I think it’s cool, but hope to find more about it. Thanks for the insight on the light.

I don’t know of any other city that required them so my guess would be your car spent time in Washington DC when new.

Well, my car being Canadian built, I find it hard to accept that Ford would ship a Canadian car to the US and likely have to pay duty when he was already manufacturing in the US. To my knowledge, they built cars in Canada to allow shipping to the British colonies (Canada being one of them) so as to avoid the tariffs.Now it may be wishful thinking on my part that my car has not been outside of Canada and that the marker light is accessory lighting that the original owner liked and installed.

Those lights were sold as accessories everywhere and anywhere. They were uncommon because who would install one only on the left rear fender as required by Washington DC law? I think your car might have history as someone may have owned it who worked at the Canadian embassy in DC for example, or who had business in DC for any number of reasons.

DC was an odd place in the 1920’s because to park on the street you had to buy DC license plates and have that silly parking lamp. It’s common to see cars with both another state’s licence plate and a DC plate and of course the parking lamp on the left rear fender.

Interesting theory. When you say DC, are you referring to Washington? That’s a long ways from Ontario. The head has been off the engine,(engine not rebuilt) and it was noted that it has had an easy life due to lack of wear. I would think that a car in that kind of service would possibly show more use. Again makes me question. Not disputing your theory just would like to figure it out if possible.I am going to have to ask my mother some questions to see if she knows any information on the car, that may have come from the guy my Dad bought it from in the 70’s, a family friend. Unfortunately I don’t think my Dad will remember due to his mental capacity at 91, but definitely worth more digging .

Yep. There was lots of business there, and for sure between Ontario and DC in multiple industries.

Those rear fender lamps were indeed required in the Washington District of Columbia from about the late 1910s through much of the 1920s. I don’t know exactly when they began or ended. They were marketed everywhere, and sold all over the country. Many people liked the idea of a parking lamp, others just liked dressing up their cars.
There was also an area near New York City, but not the city itself, that required such fender parking lamps. For that reason, a fair number of cars in New York city photos also have the fender lamps, presumably visiting the city.
I never confirmed it, but once read from someone into the local history that claimed there was a city in either Utah or Colorado that required locals to have such fender lamps. I do NOT know that for a fact, but if someone was curious enough? It might be worth researching.

License plates are a major study. Licensing of automobiles was quite fragmented from the beginning. One of the first places to require licensing an automobile was a park in Boston Massachusetts! Local wealthy liked to parade around the park on Sundays, so the park management decided to cover the costs of maintaining the streets by licensing every car that drove on the park’s streets! That was about 1900. Soon, cities and then states got into the act of licensing cars. Eventually, the states took over from local jurisdictions.
Drivers crossing state lines were often required to stop in the first town and license their car for that state. Thousands of people living near state lines needed to license their cars for two, three, or even more different states if they traveled there much.
A small in size place like the DC would require almost everyone to have license plates for the DC as well as at least one nearby state! It is common in era DC photographs to show three or four license plates on a car.
It wasn’t until the 1930s that the federal government stepped in and required all jurisdictions to recognize the licensing of all other jurisdictions. That ended most of the multiple license plates on private vehicles. Commercial transport (trucks) sometimes are still required to have multiple plates for different states they spend much time in.

Well, I talked to my Mom, she did not recall anything being said about the light or as to where the car may have been located when purchased by the man my Dad got the car from. I spoke to the son of the gentleman (deceased, and that I also knew) that my Dad bought the car from and he said that he was too young at the time his Dad got the car to remember anything. The gentleman that my Dad got the car from, would have bought the car locally, meaning within 2-300 miles of Guelph, Ontario, Canada. With my car being Canadian made, I have a hard time accepting the fact that it would have been driven that far (from Southwestern Ontario to Washington). I truly believe that the light is an accessory that the original owner installed because it would make his/her car unique. This being said, I still have a few avenues to go and ask questions, so it is not laid to rest just yet.

Anybody have any thoughts on the bumper emblem?

I spoke to my Dad today and asked if he remembered if the gentleman he got the car from mentioned where he found the car and about the marker light. Unfortunately due to my Dad’s age and some mental health issues, the memory is not was it used to be and he was unable to recall anything. So the quest continues, but at a slower pace.

Back in December I posted a picture of the emblem mounted on the front bumper of my car. In going through some of the file ‘T’ folders my dad had accumulated I found a picture of another car with the same emblem in its bumper. No idea as to whom it belongs or where he got the picture. Like the side light, not seen one before. Does anyone know what this badge might represent?

Put a post here. I moved it. Was in the wrong spot. Moved to what i did with my T.