When people think of Checker, they typically think of the bulbous old styled taxicab, you would never thing of Checker as an historical automotive innovator. The facts are pretty clear Checker was an innovator.

Fig. 1 is a side view of a portion of an automobile body embodying the Tuttle invention.

The list of Checker firsts are many and we’ll be putting forward some blogs to prove the point. In our first Checker patent blog we present the Checker Model A retractable roof.

The following can be found in the US patent filing J. H. TUTTLE AUTOMOBILE BODY

Application December 26, 193.9,l Serial No. 310,946

The invention claims is as follows:

This invention relates to improvements in automobile bodies. The invention has for its objects, First to produce a new and improved automobile body;

Second, to produce such a body in which a top section forming a portion of the top, rear and side of the body may be moved rearwardly into the body to provide a semi-open body;

Third, to provide such a body in which the top section is moved rearwardly into the body by new and improved means which may be manufactured inexpensively and may be. easily installed;

Fig. 2 is a detail sectional view through the rear portion of such a body showing the operating mechanism.

Fourth, to provide such a body in which the means for moving the top section are particularly adapted for moving such a section forming a, portion of a streamline body;

Fifth, to provide such a body in which the top section is moved from closed position to its position within the body in such a manner as to give maximum clearance for the` heads of the occupants.

Pretty impressive for Checker.  Little is known as to who John H. Tuttle was.  Preliminary searches for information indicates that he was an automotive and airplane engineer, with references in the Society of Engineers dating back to 1920.  Additionally, references can be found linking him to the Westcott Motor Cars.  Like Checker Westcott was an independent assembler of autos.  The Indiana based company was shuttered in the early 20’s at about the same time Commonwealth Motors was transitioning into Checker.  This writer wonders how long and when did Tuttle start at Checker.


Fig. 3 is a detail view partially in section showing the mechanism for rotating the top section moving screws.