Tyrrell Historical Library, Beaumont Public Library System

Finding Aid for the Herbert Herman Fiedler Photograph Collection, 1909-1920

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Fiedler, Herbert Herman, 1886-1982
Title: Herbert Herman Fiedler Photograph Collection
Dates: 1909-1920
Creator Abstract: Herbert Herman Fiedler was the personal chauffeur of Mrs. Frances Ann Lutcher of Orange, Texas. The Lutcher family owned vast tracts of timber in and around the Orange area and ran the Lutcher Moore Lumber Company. As prominent citizens of Orange, the Lutcher family owned two Pierce-Arrow touring automobiles and traveled extensively on sight-seeing trips throughout the United States, Canada, and western Europe. Many of these early road trips were documented in photographs by Mr. Fiedler.
Content Abstract: The photographic images depict the lack of good roads during the early 1900s and the difficult terrain and conditions that automobile drivers faced in cross-country excursions. One photograph of particular importance is Mr. Fiedler as the honorary chauffeur driving President William Howard Taft in a Houston, Texas, parade on the date of October 24, 1909.
Identification: AC-298
Extent: 2 boxes; approximately 0.75 cubic feet
Language: Materials are in English.
Repository: Tyrrell Historical Library, Beaumont Public Libraries,  695 Pearl St,  Beaumont, TX 77701

Biographical Note

Herbert Herman Fiedler was born in Hoboken, New Jersey, October 26, 1886, son of Herman and Pauline Fiedler, German immigrants of twelve years at the time of his birth. At the age of thirteen he had the occupation of messenger while living with his family in New York. His father was a night watchman at one of the New York factories. By the 1910 New York census, Herbert H., age 23, had gained employment as a chauffeur and his younger brother was a delivery boy for a drug store. By 1920, a Herbert Fiedler, born in New Jersey, with German immigrant parents, had made his way to Orange, Orange County, Texas. At this time, he gave his occupation as machinist or mechanic at a private home. He had met and married Ruth, a Texas born woman, in about 1915.

In 1909, Fiedler was chosen to drive President William Howard Taft during his visit to Houston, Texas. Then, shortly after the New York census of 1910, Herbert Herman Fiedler was hired by Frances Ann Lutcher to drive her and her friends from Orange to Austin, Texas, to visit her grandson Lutcher Stark, graduating from the University of Texas. After Henry Lutcher's death in 1912, Herbert drove Mrs. Lutcher on several trips including the cross country trip in the United States which he photographed.

Scope and Content Note

This collection contains the photographs taken by Herbert Herman Fiedler during his automobile travels across several states, from Orange, Texas, to Denver, Colorado, to New York, New York, and then back to Texas again. As he drove Mrs. Francis Ann Lutcher of Orange, Texas, and her companions, he made contact with city and town newspapers who reported of the road travel hardships and advertised the reliability of the Pierce-Arrow automobile. His photography includes diverse scenery and documents the difficult travel of the automobile in the early 1900s. The accompanying newspaper articles report Mr. Fiedler's route progress and road conditions encountered.


Organization of Collection

This collection is organized into 25 folders in two flat boxes, with photographs numbered consecutively.


Access Restrictions

There are no restrictions.


The Tyrrell Historical Library does not hold copyright for most of its collections. The researcher must secure permission to publish. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted to the Tyrrell Historical Library. The researcher assumes full responsibility for complying with copyright, literary property rights, and libel laws.

Index Terms

Personal Names
Achenbach, Helen
Achenbach, Ida
Fiedler, Herbert Herman (1886-1982)
Lutcher, Frances Ann Robinson (1841-1924)
Sorgo [Sorgi], Charles
Taft, William Howard (1857-1930)
Automobile travel
Mountain bears
National park and reserves
Buffalo (N.Y.)
Denver (Colo.)
Emporia [Kans.]
Houston (Tex.)
Mineral Wells (Tex.)
New York, (N.Y.)
Orange (Tex.)
Syracuse (N.Y.)
United States of America
Newspaper clippings
Picture postcards
Scrapbooks, loose-leaf

Related Material

No known related archival collections; only a Lutcher-Stark Museum booklet with history remarks and an article in the Tyrrell Historical Library Association "Journal" about Francis Ann Lutcher.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Item, Box, Folder, Herbert Herman Fiedler Photograph Collection, 1909-1920, AC-298, Tyrrell Historical Library, Beaumont, Texas.

Acquisition Information

Donated by C. L. (Larry) Manley of Beaumont, Texas.

Processing Information

Processed by Tyrrell Historical Library staff.

Finding aid revised and encoded by Tyrrell Historical Library staff, 2012 August.


Detailed Description of the Collection


Herbert Herman Fiedler Photograph Collection, 1909-1920

Box Folder
1 1 Photographs - subjects include: automobile; automobile wreckage; small-town buildings; cistern; grassy prairie; dirt roads; stick-em-up scene; "101 Ranch Store"; crossing the river; "The Texas traveler seeing America" canopy; church or Mexican mission; snow
2 Photographs - subjects include: automobile; leafless trees; grassy prairie; dirt roads; city and Oriental Drug Store; Texas city and city people; Fiedler[?] in automobile; "Orange Texas to New York via Denver Colorado"; crossing bridge; crossing river; automobile wreckage, large wagon "from Death Valley 20 mule team Borax Soap and Soap Power", valley snow, city people gathered around automobile, buildings, hillside writing
3 Photographs - subjects include: automobile; building with ivy growth; dirt roads and wooded terrain; Fiedler[?] and his boots; rocky terrain; river white water; rocky cliffs; automobile stuck in mud; railroad track building; Fiedler[?] posing with "Death Valley" wagon; petrified tree trunks; "Cedar Rapids, Iowa" sign
4 Photographs - subjects include: Death Valley, two wagons, automobile on cliff ledge, bird's eye view, Fiedler[?] and automobile on hilltop; underpass; wooded terrain; automobile wreckage; beside park; grassy prairie; dirt roads; automobile stuck in mud; rocky cliffs; mountain roads; waterfalls
5 Photographs - subjects include: mountain roads; rocky terrain; hot springs; geyser; cars passing on narrow mountain road; cliffs; mountain range; water fall; Fiedler[?] in chaffeur driving apparel; Fiedler[?] in western clothes; cabins
6 Photographs - subjects include: automobile in pieces in dirt terrain; geyser; dirt road beside river; crossing bridge; beside a park; dirt road in grassy prairie; wooded terrain; Francis Ann Lutcher[?] in passenger car seat; Fiedler[?] in mechanic clothing; wooded hillside; man on burro; man on burro with mule team and dogs; mountain cliff road; man beside automobile before tunnel; tunnel and white water river; cabin
7 Photographs - subjects include: automobile; dirt road in open prairie; cliff and white water river; Carrizozo, New Mexico, town buildings; railroad train; Fiedler[?] and three women; valley roads; river and hot water springs; canyon; Fiedler[?] photographed in suit with hat and coat; geyser; Fiedler[?] in mechanic clothing; rocky hill terrain; shady country road; city people gathered around automobiles; automobiles on barge or ferry on waterway
8 Photographs - subjects include: Fiedler[?] driving automobile in desert, past "I. E. Carter Groceries" store; horse team and covered wagon; "Ross Dollarhide, on Tracy, Elk's Rodeo. c. Miller Photo Company"; petrified tree trunks; cabin; waterway in mountain cliffs; crossing stream; horse team and buggy with automobiles; grassy prairie; town people gathered around automobile; railroad bridge crossing waterway; road bridge; automobiles on narrow mountain road
9 Photographs - subjects include: automobiles; dirt road with open grassy prairie and telegraph poles; brick city street and buildings; Fiedler[?] in automobile, on ferry crossing a waterway; rock structures; dirt road on open prairie; automobile wreckage; family in automobile; "Orange Texas to New York via Denver-Omaha and Chicago. Return via Cincinnati-St. Louis and Oklahoma City. 10,000 miles complete"; crossing bridge; crossing stream; snow; stuck in mud "to Raton, New Mexico, 1918"
10 Photographs - subjects include: Fiedler[?] in western clothes; cabins; automobile stuck in mud; open prairie road; town; large automobile with smaller circa 1905 "roadster" beside; posing with American flag on automobile; hard-top automobile at "Pahaska, Buffalo Bill's Hotel in the Rockies"; muddy terrain; automobiles at "Seabee" [hotel?]; Fiedler[?] with woman and dog [Collie]; cistern atop [living quarters?]; open prairie; rocky cliffs and river; rock structure; white water and waterfall
11 Photographs - subjects include: black bear in wooded area; geyser or hot springs; rocky terrain and underpass; automobiles; rocky cliffs; Fiedler[?] posing on boulder; open prairie; Fiedler[?] older, circa 1920s; automobiles at "City Garage", Fiedler[?] in Pierce Arrow shirt; "The Road in Shoshone Canyon. c. 1922 by F. J. Hiscock-Cody"; automobile wreckage
12 Photographs - subjects include: railroad station "Texline" F. W. & D [Fort Worth and Dallas?]; automobile crossing stream, "Cedar Rapids Iowa" sign; Fiedler[?] beside automobile; automobile wreckage; posing with automobile "Herb" and "Me"; Fiedler[?]; automobile stuck in mud; Fiedler[?] drinking water in desert terrain; shooting pistol; Fiedler[?] on horse; cabin
13 Photographs - subjects include: men on horses; making preparations at ferry on waterway; automobile; automobile stuck in mud; petrified tree; men posing in automobile; Francis Ann Lutcher[?] with binoculars at [canyon edge] with others; Fiedler[?] photographed in western clothes; cabin; Fiedler[?] on ferry boat or pier looking over water; black bear in [National Park]; rocky terrain
14 Photographs - subjects include: rocky cliffs; rocky terrain; tunnel; hot springs; canyon river and [electrical power station?]; rock structures; geyser; wooded terrain; autombile at tunnel; open prairie; Fiedler[?] and second man posing on rock cliff
15 Photographs - subjects include: automobiles on train flatbed car; cliff river; rock formation; automobile wreckage; automobile without tire; open prairie; automobile lodged in dirt; Fiedler[?] in western clothes with holster and pistol; man on horse herding cattle; crossing bridge; distant town with canal, railroad tracks, and electricity poles; river dammed in rocky cliffs; dammed river at "Shoshone Canyon. by F. J. Hiscock. Cody, Wyoming."; cottage in town [Orange, Texas?]
Box Folder
2 1 Newspaper article copies, circa 1912: Herbert Fiedler and Charles Sorgo trip Denver to New York; Herbert Fiedler and Charles Sorgi stop off in Syracuse on the way to New York; Mrs. Lutcher's [traveling] party returns to Orange with 1600 miles on odometer; Touring Europe in Pierce-Arrow, traveled over 21,000 miles since purchased in 1911; Fiedler chosen in 1910 over all [chauffeurs] in Texas to drive President Taft in Houston
2 Biographical information: Fiedler and Lutcher information, including obituary, census pages, draft registration, etc.
3 Scrapbook page, circa 1912 [news article: Santa Fe Trail to Emporia; photographs: Fiedler[?] posing in San Antonio[?]; rapids; Pierce-Arrow
4 News and magazine original articles, circa 1912. (stop-over in Mineral Wells, [Texas], sandy terrain Pierce-Arrow endures; The Pierce-Arrow Salesman, "Seeing American First: An Account of One of the Recent Lutcher Tours").
5 Scrapbook page (oversize), circa 1912 (Fiedler's snapshot images on page in a publication
6 Scrapbook page (oversize), circa 1912 (Buffalo New York newspaper with Fiedler's iamges of the Pierce-Arrow on its trip)
7 Photograph of W. H. Taft being driven by Herbert Fiedler in Houston, 1909
8 Photograph (oversize), of Fiedler and second man posing in automobile on city street, circa 1912
9 News article (original), circa 1912
10 News articles (original), on Mrs. Lutcher's travels, circa 1930s