Baby Inter-State

Little zippy cars. If you have read any of my other blog posts about cars, two things stand out: Indiana is a land with a rich car making (and manufacturing) history so early cars are everywhere. And I seem to be attracted to little zippy cars.

Like the 1913 Imp at the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum, I was drawn to the name: Baby Inter-State. And the bucket seats. Sure, it has a hand crank. But can’t you just see yourself driving one of these in the open air with a riding coat and goggles on?

1916 Baby Inter-State on display at the Clabber Girl Museum in Terra Haute, Indiana

The 1916 Baby Inter-State was produced by the Inter-State Motor Company of Muncie, Indiana. (Huh. An early car company that I hadn’t heard of yet in my zig-zagging across the state to different car museums and exhibits.) The company began in October 1913 and started production of its Model T cars with heavier engines. (About the same time as the Imp!)

Why was it called Baby? It was the least expensive Model T version in the Inter-State Motor Company lineup.

I can find precious little information (OK. No information.) about the Baby Inter-State beyond what is on the placard at the Clabber Girl Museum in Terre Haute. In 1918 GM bought the Inter-State Motor Company for the short-lived (1920-1921) production of its Sheridan cars. But histories of Sheridan make no mention of this fact. And with the sale, the Baby Inter-State seemingly disappeared.


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