That car that Joe, Lizzie, Leslie, Earl and Hazel are riding in, in the header photo at the top of every page, is (as some of you may remember if you’ve been reading all of these posts) a Canadian-built Russell.

It was built in Toronto in 1911 by the Russell Motor Car Company.

When I learned that the car was a Russell (from that 1975 article about Earl and Hazel) I did some research and then reached out to Peter Findlay, president of the Antique Chapter of the Vintage Car Club of Canada. He was pleased to see a previously unknown photograph of an iconic Canadian car.

Peter was very helpful in several ways. He confirmed that the car was probably a 1911 Model 38 and that, based on the official list of Ontario car owners and their licence plate numbers, Joseph Price of 126 Lee Avenue in Toronto was issued plate number 1818.

List of Permits to Operate Motor Vehicles in Ontario May 1911
Pages from the the “List of Permits to Operate Motor Vehicles in Ontario” (May 1911), showing plate no. 1818 issued to Joseph Price (source: P. Findlay)

With my permission, Peter posted the photo to the page on his club’s website, where all the existing known photographs of Russells are displayed. There are a lot of pictures and Joe’s car is a little more than half-way down. You’ll find it if you do a search for the word “Lizzie.”

Here is a screenshot.

Screenshot of Joe Prices Russell motor car on vintage car website
Antique Chapter – Vintage Car Club of Canada (Russell photo archive)

Update – August 2021

Since this was first posted, a new website has been established for vintage Russell cars, and the Russell-related pages that were on the website of the Vintage Car Club of Canada have been moved there.

Here is the old site, which links now to the new site, and the page that features Joe’s car is here. I have updated the links in the body of the post accordingly.

A $130,000 Car

According to the 1911 page of the Russell website, a brand-new 1911 Model 38 Touring had a Manufacturer’s Suggested List Price of $5,000. The Bank of Canada’s inflation calculator only goes back to 1914, but that’s probably close enough. If you feed the Russell’s 1911 price into the calculator, you’ll find that it was the equivalent of close to 130,000 Canadian dollars in 2021.

At least Joe didn’t go for the optional wire wheels you see on the model above.