Oct 01 2016

John E. Roosevelt Family Photo Album: The 1909 Long Island Stock Car Derby

The third post from the John E. Roosevelt Family Album features rare photos of the 1909 Long Island Stock Car Derby, also known as the Long Island Motor Derby and the Long Island Derby.

Gladys Roosevelt, the daughter of John E. Roosevelt and the second cousin of President Teddy Roosevelt, documented the series of five races held on September 29, 1909, one month prior to the 1909 Vanderbilt Cup Race. One-half of the 18 drivers participated in one or more Vanderbilt Cup Races or Sweepstakes including: Louis Chevrolet, Ralph DePalma, Bob Burman, Frank Lescault, Louis Disbrow, Arthur See, Herb Lytle, Hughies Hughes, and William Sharp.

The races were run over a 22.75 miles course from Riverhead to Mattituck and back. The five classes were determined by the selling price range. Each driver was required to complete four laps (91 miles) to ten laps (227.5 miles) depending on the class.

The photos are courtesy of the Bayport Heritage Association and the Suffolk County Parks Department.
Howard Kroplick



#1 Rainier- Driven by Louis Disbrow

#2 Mercedes- Driven by George Armstrong

#4 Apperson- Driven by Herb Lytle and mechanician James Bates

Caption: Apperson which upset on the first lap, injuring Lytle and killing the mechanician James Bates.

#7 FIAT- Driven by Ralph DePalma

#8 Rainier- Driven by Charles Lund

#9 Sharp-Arrow- Driven by William Sharp

#11 Buick- Driven by Louis Chevrolet

William Bruce-Brown, a family friend and brother of David Bruce-Brown

The Brooklyn Daily Eagle,September 29, 1909


Oct 03 2016 Ted 11:49 AM

You always find or get things that we never knew about,when it comes to history,well that’s your job I guess,it makes life more interesting.Thanks for all this info and to the people who send it to you.

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