The Joliet Economy Motor Buggy

Image of 1909 Economy Motor Buggy, Model E.

This 1909 Economy Motor Buggy, Model E, was manufactured by the Economy Motor Buggy Company in Joliet, Illinois. It is one of the three known surviving Economy Motor Buggies and the only one that has been fully restored to operating condition. This vehicle was eventually acquired by Dr. and Mrs. David O. Lyon of Lawton, Michigan. The Lyons undertook a five-year restoration of the car which included replacing many missing parts and restoring and repainting the carriage body. “Tillie” is affectionately named after Mrs. Lyon’s grandmother, Matilda. The car was acquired for the permanent collection of the Joliet Area Historical Museum in October 2004.

The effort to bring the Economy Motor Buggy home to Joliet was led by Mr. Carl Dukes and Dr. Robert E. Sterling. Under their leadership, generous donations to purchase the vehicle were secured from local automobile dealers, automotive service providers, and Friends of the Museum.