"BUICK MOTOMETER, STUMB-CAWTHORN BUICK COMPANY, NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE" (ca. 1918)
Most likely, early 20th century automobile items like the Motometer, from a Nashville, TN dealer, are quite rare. Approximately 5 inches (height), 8 inches (width), appears to be brass and other metals, and to be all original including glass. Before the temperature gauge became a standard component on automobile’s dash board, there were motometers.
These were essentially a thermometer that screwed into the radiator cap to indicate the engine temperature. By the 1920’s motometers were replaced with radiator caps, and to make radiator caps more appealing to car buyers, the hood ornament was born.