Larz Anderson Auto Museum Honored at Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance

The Larz Anderson Auto Museum was invited to show a car at the prestigious Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, where it won the award for “Most Well-Preserved Pre-War Car.”

Larz Anderson Auto Museum Honored at Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance
Brookline, MA, August 26, 2021 --( The Larz Anderson Auto Museum (LAAM) has won an award for one of the most notable autos in its collection at this year’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, held August 15, 2021 in Pebble Beach, CA.

The Museum’s 1908 Bailey Electric Victoria Phaeton was invited to show in the Early Electrics class, where judges awarded it “Most Well-Preserved Pre-War Vehicle” on the show field.

The car was not entered in the competition, but Concours judges nevertheless singled it out as an exceptional example.

“Electric cars have a long and unique history, and we’re honored to share Isabel’s favorite car on the west coast,” said LAAM Executive Director Sheldon Steele of the car’s invitation to the Concours.

Now in its 70th year, the Pebble Beach Concours is the premier American collector car event, and one of the most prestigious automotive competitions. Concours entries are governed by the Pebble Beach Concours Selection Committee. Entrants must either be invited, as LAAM’s Bailey was, or apply and be approved to show a car. The Selection Committee typically eschews cars that have shown elsewhere recently and prizes original examples. The featured classes of the Concours change annually; this year, the show highlighted “Early Electrics.”

The Anderson Collection, to which the museum’s Bailey belongs, is America’s Oldest Car Collection. The 14 automobiles that make up the Collection were all purchased new by Larz and Isabel Anderson, and all were kept from the start in the same carriage house where they remain today.

The Larz Anderson Auto Museum has long espoused a philosophy of “preservation over restoration,” a principle that has gained traction in the collector car community in recent years. The all-original Bailey, a 113-year-old single-owner car, exemplifies the preservation doctrine.

“It was very exciting to see the Bailey recognized for its unique status – an original vehicle from motoring’s earliest days that remains housed in its original location,” said LAAM board President Norty Knox.

About the 1908 Bailey Electric Victoria Phaeton

Larz and Isabel Anderson, considered America’s original car collectors, acquired some 32 cars in their life together, but the Bailey was Mrs. Anderson’s favorite. Its electric motor meant that it did not have to be crank-started, nor did it produce the noise and smoke that accompanied the gasoline- and steam-powered autos of the day. This, along with the rear seat provided for her footman, made the car suitable for a lady to drive, which Isabel Anderson appreciated as the first woman in Massachusetts to obtain a driver’s license.

This particular Bailey is also notable as the first electric car to travel the 1500 miles from Boston to New York to Chicago; astonishingly, it needed no repairs during the journey.

About the Larz Anderson Auto Museum

The Larz Anderson Auto Museum is a non-profit 501(c)(3) cultural and educational institution. Based in the carriage house of the original Anderson estate in Brookline, MA, the Museum preserves the historic Anderson Collection, supports the community around it, and serves as the hub of automotive culture in the Northeast.

The Larz Anderson Auto Museum is open Tuesday-Saturday, 10 am – 4 pm, and Sunday, 9 am – 3 pm.

For more information, contact Sheldon Steele, 617-522-6547,

Photo: Allan Rosenberg (MMR)
Larz Anderson Auto Museum
Sheldon Steele