David J. Folger, originally from Nantucket, was an apprentice at a carriage trimmer in Fall River. In 1869 he started working for Charles W. Patten, a carriage maker based in Amesbury. When Patten retired in 1880, Folger took over the business, operating under the name D.J. Folger, Maunfacturer of Carriages and Sleighs. In 1887 Folger teamed up with James Drummond, and the following year they opened a new carriage factory. They produced 1,000 carriages a year and showed their products at the World’s Columbian Exposition in 1893.
At a carriage show banquet that Folger and Drummond attended in 1896, the guests were assured that the horse and carriage business had a long future and that there was no need to be concerned by the new, sure-to-fail invention: the horseless carriage. Just a few years later, Folger died. Many of the stores in Amesbury closed for Folger’s funeral, and the procession was accompanied by the E.P. Wallace GAR Post, of which Folger had been a member. Drummond was left to try to keep the business afloat while the “horseless carriage,” or automobile, was becoming increasingly popular.