WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWNY) - Before cars, there were carriages. Before Ford and Chevy, there was Babcock. It made carriages in Watertown in the 1800s and now one of these has made its way back home.
It’s being towed in by truck instead of horse - a 21st Century change for a Babcock carriage.
But no matter how it got here, members of the Jefferson County Historical Society are happy to have it.
“Our director was very ecstatic that it was finally here. We’re very happy,” said board of directors member Tom Catalano.
The carriage is a product of Watertown’s H.H. Babcock Company and it was built back around 1895.
He says having the carriage back home is a way to help people remember a company important to the city’s history.
“It’s a precursor to the automobile industry in this area. It’s a gorgeous automobile that they built, as well as the carriage behind me. It’s part of our history that we ned to cherish and make sure that it’s never lost,” said Catalano.
According to Catalano, it took more than a month to get the carriage to Watertown from Pennsylvania.
That’s where the vehicle’s donor, Newt Brosius lives.
Brosius says he bought the carriage more than a decade ago and when it came time to part with it, instead of selling it at auction, he decided to donate the carriage to the city that bore it.
“I had no idea where it would end up and if anybody would take care of it. So, the idea came to my head, well why don’t you Google Watertown and see if there’s a museum up there that might be interested in a Babcock carriage,” said Brosius.
Catalano says the tentative plan is to build a display for the Babcock carriage in front of the museum. If approved, it could be completed next year.