Photos of Vintage Auto Dealerships, Repair Shops, and Gas Stations

ayilar

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Art Deco, Mid-Century Modern, whatever strikes your fancy is fine -- architectural interest should be the deciding factor!

Mopar shops are great, but there is no brand restriction here. Ditto for size: small or huge, as long as it looks good to you, post it! Whether they appear in their heyday or decrepit, go ahead! And while vintage dealerships / fueling stations / repair shops are what I have in mind for this thread, go ahead if a newer dealership strikes your fancy!

PLEASE post the name/location if you have that information.

@C Body Bob created a cool thread for Mopar vintage dealerships back in 2015. It has legs (19 pages!), but it is meant only for Mopar shops (no other brands) and dealerships (not repair shops). Here, I intend to focus on the buildings and their architecture. @sauterd and @MarPar posted a couple of dealership pics in a 2019 thread, and @John Kelly posted some of his own modern designs in this 2019 thread. I am not aware of other threads on related topics.

Paging some of the folks who have commented on these earlier threads, or who I think might be interested (apologies if you're interested and I did not tag you): @david hill @sixpkrt @Imperialist67 @Dobalovr @ceebuddy @rapidtrans @CBODY67 @kyle340 @saforwardlook @amazinblue82 @Big_John @Ripinator @bigmoparjeff @Fratzog @Boydsdodge @73Coupe @commando1 @glennb49 @MrMoparCHP @fc7_plumcrazy @patrick66 @Stormer

Here is a photo to start the thread -- this old Conoco station & diner is now the Chamber of Commerce building in Shamrock, TX:

 
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In the Pierce Arrow museum in Buffalo, NY, there's a replica of a Frank Lloyd Wright service station. I don't believe any were ever built ( I may be wrong though) and this was done from his design. It's hard to photograph and best seen in person. IIRC, that is Wright's orange Cord parked in front of it. The Buffalo Transportation Pierce-Arrow Museum

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Thanks for the ping @ayilar.

I have put a few of these in a couple of threads, as have others .. be neat to focus on the architecture in one place.

Where was this Mopar Brochure/Ad Photo shot?

Detroit's Vinsetta Garage.

Built in 1919 of steel and brick design/construction style typical of that era, received "freshenings" in the art-deco/neon era through 1930's-50's, it finally succumbed to economic tides as a gas station/auto repair facility almost 100 years later, now architecturally preserved as restaurant.

circa 1920's
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Currently as a auto-themed restaurant, Woodward Ave @ Eaton. The modern-day architecture preserves much of the century old building at you can see.
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Vintage Chrysler Corp dealership pics

The former Cass Motor Sales building in Detroit.

"The three-story Cass Motor Sales building is significant as a fine example of 1920s Art Deco styling as applied to commercial structures.

Cass Motor Sales was established as a Chrysler dealership in 1925 and the building was constructed in 1928. The building is three stories, 51,000 sq. ft., and was designed as an integrated showroom, sales office, and service center.

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Now its a Carhartt Store, still with most of the facade's architecture preseved.
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The Imperial is at a 1920s Phillips 66 in Chandler, OK, on the old Route 66.

The Coronet is at what used to be a truck stop on old Route 66 just North of I-40, and about 8 miles North of Hinton, OK.

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Former Hi-Speed Gas company station (Hi Speed was founded in Toledo Ohio in 1917).

Their expansion in the 1930s resulted in several "art deco" gas stations sprinkled around Michigan and Ohio for sure .. could be many other states though.

A 1940 example of one in East Lansing Michigan (Michigan Ave. @ Grand River -- its gone now) to show how they looked back in the day.
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One remaining building in Detroit, Grand River at Fullerton back in 2011, and then today. Tough part of town. Its still there though.
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Last, one in Wyandotte Michigan (Biddle Ave. @ Forest St.), last was a restaurant, but you see the distinctive art deco styling. Torn down in 2018 apparently.
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The Moyer was a car built in Syracuse. Only about 10 cars survive and I saw one just last week. One of the buildings was home to Porter Cable for a while, then to Pennfield Mfg. that made mattresses. It's a landmark here for the "house" on the roof that was built to conceal the elevator machinery. The building has fallen into disrepair in the past decade.


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Not a "dealership", but one of the vestiges of the Big Three ... the former American Motors Headquarters located on Plymouth Road on the west side of Detroit.

Built in 1927, architect Smith, Hinchman & Grylls of Detroit, the centerpiece of the complex was a art-deco inspired office tower with a three-story factory and power plant behind it. All in, the complex comprised 1.5 million square feet

First, it was Kelvinator-Nash, then Hudson, then AMC, then Chrysler's Jeep Engineering Center, before Chrysler moved out of the city .. and then we kinda know the rest.

After Chrysler finally fully vacated in early 2000's, the site fell into significant dis-repair from neglect/vandals, etc.

Heck, this complex may be gone now (the was a redevelopment plan for it around 2017 or so) as I have not been over on that side of Detroit in a decade.

In its day, it was something though ...

source: AMC Headquarters | Historic Detroit

Circa 1990
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Circa 2012
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Room and Board's furniture store in the Logan Circle neighborhood at 14th and T Streets NW in Washington, DC started life as "the R.L. Taylor building, originally built in 1919 as a Ford Motors showroom." Funny that, selling the Ford Model T on T Street :)

Here is what it looked like in 1923, as seen in a "5x4 glass negative (from the) National Photo Company Collection." A high-res version is here:

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Below is what it looks like today, after renovation by McCullough Construction, LLC. "McCullough Construction added a fourth floor to this 1919 Historic property originally built as a showroom and factory for Ford Motors (...) to house a new and modern furniture store. In addition to high end contemporary finishes, all new building systems were added, including elevator, HVAC, plumbing and electrical systems." A very successful renovation -- the store is well worth visiting, and the furniture is great.

PS: I wonder if the tree in front is the same specimen as the sapling in the 1923 photo...

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This one is for @patrick66 :

OKC's former Walter E. Allen Chrysler Plymouth dealership, at NW 13 and Harvey Ave., was built in 1946. Here it is as it appeared in the early fifties, courtesy of The Oklahoman. A brief history and pics inside the building is here.

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The left part of the building was sold off years ago and is now offices.

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The showroom (right side of the first pic) was bought three years ago and is being renovated. The work is currently underway, here is what it should look like:

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Vintage Chrysler Corp dealership pics

@commando1 had a good example of an art-deco property on 3400 Black Horse Pike in N. Collingswood NJ (just across the Delaware River from Philadelphia)

Circa 1960
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Circa 2015
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Here it is today .. still there, still a dealership it appears, still at least with the distinctive doorway architecture mostly intact as to the brickwork at least ..
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This page on Flickr has hundreds of showroom pics -- some look good, some don't:

 
Not my city :)

Can't find a vintage photo of 442 S Grove Ave, Oak Park, IL, of this former Cadillac-LaSalle dealership (another Albert Kahn design) built in 1927 --repurposed to an award-winning 51-unit apartment building.

sources: Former Oak Park auto showroom gets a winning renovation,
Grove Apartments opens with full occupancy - Oak Park,

Just looking at the "after" pic, you can tell what it used to be (large side entrance, ample glass frontage indicative of a "showroom" etc.) Maybe local Chicagoan can give us a "before" photo?

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