Les Femmes Cocher / 15 (Mme. Charnier / 4)
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Paris Nouveau no. 2277 Les Femmes Cocher

Source:

Les Femmes Cocher / 15

Mme. Charnier / 4

Picture (left): Mme. Charnier in her driver's seat.

Another photo of Mme. Charnier, showing her cab's meter. As in most of the postcard photos where the meter is visible the flag is in the "down" position, indicating that the meter is running. This suggests that the drivers (and the cab company) were being paid meter rates for the photo session. The driver's share was thirty percent.

Taximeters, a German invention, were perfected in 1890 but due to wrangling between the authorities and the cab companies they were not made compulsory on Paris cabs until 1904.

Perhaps surprisingly the meters were electric and powered by batteries. Cheaper, clockwork meters came along later and were the norm in North American taxis until electronic meters hit the market in the 1970s.

The word "Libre" on the flag means "free" (i.e., available for hire).

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