This splendid sterling goblet, twenty inches across at the top and nearly two feet tall, is the Vanderbitt Cup—a trophy whose name still resonates with the thunder of the powerful, square-snouted machines that pounded over the back roads of Long Island eighty years ago. The first Vanderbitt Cup race was run in 1904, but an American didn’t get his name on the cup until 1908, when George Robertson won it in his Locomobile.
The race became increasingly lethal and petered out around the time of the First World War. Today the cup is in the National Museum of American History, which hopes someday to acquire Robertson’s Locomobile as well. For more on America’s auto-racing past, see the story within.