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Freelan O. Stanley Autographs, Memorabilia & Collectibles

Born: June 01, 1849 in Kingfield, Maine
Died: October 02, 1940 in Newton, Massachusetts
Biography | show moreshow less
Freelan O. Stanley (1849-1940) and his brother Francis E. Stanley became businessmen who developed the Stanley Motor Carriage Company, eventually building the Stanley Steamer. Their steam-powered automobiles grew extremely popular, although it was eventually superseded by the Model T. Steam engine vehicles gradually became obsolete technologically. After Stanley was diagnosed with a life-threatening case of tuberculosis in 1903, Stanley resolved to get some fresh air. Until his death in 1940, Stanley for the most part resided in Estes Park, Colorado. Through his investment in the fledgling town, Estes Park grew significantly. Stanley designed a hotel which cost half a million dollars, installed a power plant to provide electricity, built a water pipe system to bring running water to the hotel from the surrounding mountains, and installed telephones in every room (luxuries in those days). In a two-month period in 1911, some 2,500 guests visited his hotel, driven up the mountain in 13 Stanley Steamer buses. The hotel remains a popular attraction, and "modern day" guests have included Stephen King, who formed the frame for his chilling novel, The Shining (1977), in Room 217.

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