1961 Bentley Continental Drophead Coupe by Park Ward

  Number Delivered Original
BC100LBY May 61 USA Ralph Stolkin Richard & Konomi Beesley USA

[February 2002]

From Richard Beesley:

The history I have on BC100LBY is extracted from RROC and RREC records and information obtained from the owner before me.


  1. Mr. Ralph E. Stolkin of Bel-Air, California
    (from new, 1961 until ???)
  2. Mr. Sterling Morton of Beverly Hills, California (??? until 1969)
  3. Mr. and Mrs. Peter R. Cohen of Brentwood, California (1969 to 1999)
  4. My wife Konomi and myself (1999 to present)

Mr. Stolkin of Bel-Air, California ordered the car new. The retailer was listed as Rolls Royce, Inc. (New York) with J.S. Inskip, Inc. (New York) and Imperial Motors, Inc. (of Chicago) listed as sub-retailers. The paint scheme was black with a black convertible top. Special features included a zebra skin interior (eleven hides) and an ice thermos fitted to the passenger door. The zebra interior was exotic, but my gut feeling is that it may not have suited the first owner's fancy after all, as it appears to have been replaced rather early on (with black leather hides).

The car was ordered on or before January 6, 1961. The chassis was delivered to the coachbuilder on January 30, 1961 and delivered to the shippers on May 24, 1961. It departed London on May 26, 1961 via the good ship "Sidonia" for New York. Delivery was "guaranteed" by July 15, 1961.

I am guessing that Mr. Stolkin owned the car up until at least 1965 or 1966, as I found his Richfield credit card, valid for those years, in the defrost vents. There is then a gap in the ownership history, but a Mr. Sterling Morton of Beverly Hills, California was the seller of the car in 1969. The car then came into the hands of Mr. & Mrs. Peter R. Cohen of Brentwood, California (1969-1999). My wife, Konomi, and I bought the car from Mr. Cohen's widow, Barbara, in January of 1999.

I purchased the car for restoration. After driving BC1OOLBY from Los Angeles to my home near Seattle and using it around town for about a year, the restoration process was started. The body is still off at this time, but the chassis and all of its components are approaching completion. I am fortunate to have a very trustworthy and certified Rolls Royce mechanic (with 20-plus years of experience and extensive RROC involvement) attending to the chassis. My plans are to have the car finished in time to drive it to Monterey in 2004 for the 100th anniversary celebration of the Rolls Royce marque. Time will tell if this works out or not.