Historic Pelham

Presenting the rich history of Pelham, NY in Westchester County: current historical research, descriptions of how to research Pelham history online and genealogy discussions of Pelham families.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Col. Delancey Kane's "Pelham Coach", Also Known as The Tally-Ho, Is Located

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On May 1, 1876 "The Pelham Coach" began running between New York City's Hotel Brunswick and Pelham Bridge. Within a short time, The New York Times reported that "[t]he Pelham coach has commanded as much patronage as if it were the only means of communication between Pelham and this City."

The inaugural run of the Pelham Coach, also known as Col. Delancey Kane's "Tally-ho", was the introduction of Col. Kane's New-Rochelle and Pelham Four-in-Hand Coach Line. The purpose of the line, according to a news account of its opening:

"is not pecuniary profit, for under the most favorable circumstances, with every seat full every day of the season, the coach cannot pay its expenses. Col. Kane will drive his coach mainly for his own amusement, with, perhaps, the secondary idea of affording such persons as care to avail themselves of it, the pleasure of a novel ride through an interesting and picturesque country, with a sojourn of four hours on the shore of Long Island Sound at Pelham Bridge, between going and returning. Viewed in this light the New-Rochelle and Pelham coach must be regarded as affording the means of a day of unrivaled enjoyment."

Col. Kane ran his coach over several routes, all of which included Pelham, during the coaching season (April/May to December) each year until about 1883. The coach attracted national attention and was the subject of at least three popular songs and countless articles in a host of publications.

Although Col. Kane ended his public coaching runs in 1883, he continued to drive the coach until 1910 in annual "meets" and "drives" of the Coaching Club of New York City that he helped found. Although Col. Kane died at his estate on Davenport's Neck in New Rochelle (known as the "Paddocks") in 1910, his wife (Eleanora A. Iselin Kane) lovingly maintained the coach.

According to Mrs. Kane's obituary, "[i]n 1933 Mrs. Kane presented to the Museum of the City of New York the tally-ho coach which, beginning in 1876, ran for about twenty years from the Hotel Brunswick in Madison Square to New Rochelle." Mrs. Delancey A. Kane - Member of Old New York Family Dies in Westchester at 89, N.Y. Times, Oct. 23, 1938, p. 40.

The Pelham Coach still exists. I have corresponded with Ms. Melanie Bower, Collections Access Associate of the Museum of the City of New York. On February 10 she wrote me saying "[t]he Museum does own the Tally-ho coach used by Col. Delancey [Kane]. The coach is currently stored in the Museum's off-site curatorial facility. While it is possible to schedule an appointment to view the coach in storage, it is currently not on display at the Museum."

As I continue to work on an extensive article detailing the history of the Tally-ho and its ties to Pelham, I plan to pay the required fees and ask the Museum of the City of New York to photograph the Tally-ho for the records of The Office of The Historian of The Town of Pelham.

To learn much more about Col. Kane and his Tally-ho, see Bell, Blake A., Col. Delancey Kane and "The Pelham Coach", The Pelham Weekly, Vol. XII, No. 38, Sept. 26, 2003, p. 1, col. 1.

Please visit the Historic Pelham Web Site
Located at


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