Inter-State Fifty Bulldog Indianapolis Racer

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Fifty Bulldog Indianapolis Racer





The Inter-State was a Brass Era car built in Muncie, Indiana by Inter-State Automobile Company from 1909 to 1919. Thomas F. Hart announced in October 1908 the winning name of his new company, chosen via a contest. The Inter-State Automobile Company set up shop at 142 Willard Street. Originally, all Inter-States were mid-market, both in size and price, with four-cylinder engines. In 1913, 6-cylinder engines were added.

The company's cars really were excellent, well-built, strong machines, and the firm proved it with an entrant in the inaugural Indianapolis 500 of 1911. One of forty entries, the so-called 'Bull Dog' entered as car no. 3, prominently placed in the middle of the front row with driver Harry Endicott. Endicott finished 16th out of 40 entrants. He later recounted that he had to stop eleven times for tires and twice for oil and gasoline, and that aside from a carburetor adjustment, no mechanical troubles were encountered. He would later drive an Inter-State – presumed to be the same car – to victories in two races at Kansas City and in two events at Galveston, finishing third in both, outplaced only by Nationals.

In 1915, a new Beaver 4-cylinder low-priced car was released.

Unfortunately receivership followed in the fall of 1913. Frank C. Ball (one of the original Inter-State investors) bought the Inter-State factory and real estate. This resulted in a renaming of the parent company to the Inter-State Motor Company. By May 1918, automobile production was suspended in favor of war work. In late February 1919, F.C. Ball announced he would be resuming passenger car production, but by March of the same year, Ball sold the Inter-State factory to General Motors for them to produce their new Sheridan.


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