Sherburne History Center

Sherburne History Center
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Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Charley Babcock's New Car

An interesting bit of local detail: Charles Babcock, native resident of Elk River and Minnesota’s first State Commissioner of Highways, can claim yet another first in Sherburne County.  The Sherburne County Star News reported on 18 April 1907: “Charley Babcock is the first to invest in an automobile in this village.  His is a fine ‘Buick’ car, propelled by a 22 horse power engine.” 

A brief search indicated the car’s speed topped out around 40 miles-per-hour. 

The newspaper reported the novel contraption entertained local friends and neighbors.  “His longest run since bringing the machine home was to Princeton and back last Sunday.  His wife, mother and Cora Babcock accompanied him.” 

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