It appears the original building is still standing in more recent times:
The sign says it.
I believe it.
That settles it!
If I can get there by 7 will any new DeSotos or Plymouths be available?
The last location for my restoration shop was originally known as Spaulding DeSoto-Plymouth, in Poplar Springs, MD. Until I saw this I thought it might have been the only DeSoto-Plymouth location, as I’ve never seen evidence of another example.
In talking with the Spaulding family descendants, they said the location, in a very rural part of the state, began as a Chrysler-Plymouth dealership. However because they sold almost no Chrysler branded vehicles in the 1930s, Chrysler scaled them down to DeSoto instead.
In 1968 Chrysler Corporation told the family they needed to update and become Chrysler-Plymouth again, and erect an all-new building, including service, parts, and showroom. Old man Spaulding told them no, and when Chrysler yanked the franchise, he switched to Toyota.
Didn’t every DeSoto dealer also sell Plymouth? As I recall from seeing reruns and clips on YouTube, DeSoto Plymouth dealers were the sponsor for Groucho Marx’s You Bet Your Life program on television.
That’s entirely possible, I’m simply not aware of any, and certainly not in the mid-Atlantic area.
All Mopar dealers sold Plymouth until 1960.
Plymouth was also a sponsor of the Lawrence Welk show (briefly) before switching to Dodge back in the late 1950’s. After Welk dropped Dodge, his longest running sponsors became Geritol and Serutan – both products of the J.B. Williams Company.
I wish I could go in there and buy a Business Coupe……
If I could go back in my time machine, I’d grab the woody wagon on the display floor.
Spent the vast majority of my young life in the back of my Dad’s Impala wagon…so rare today.
With that slogan, it would be kind of embarrassing if the clock broke (which these often do) showing the INCORRECT time!
You’d probably still have at least once a day where you could sneak in and do business… and perhaps twice if the dealership was liberal with their open hours, yeah?
I’ve always been of the opinion that regular old synchronous electric clocks are pretty darn reliable over the long haul. I guess I’m mainly comparing them to modern day battery powered quartz analog clocks, which seem to poop their trousers with alarming regularity. Case in point: My ex was an elementary school teacher whose school lacked an interconnected clock system (it started life as a bowling alley/gym and was converted to a school on the cheap). Pretty much all of the teachers supplied their own quartz clocks, and they drifted so far from each other that all of the classes ended up going to lunch-recess-discharging at markedly different times a week or so after staff would make a concerted effort to synchronize their timekeeping devices… and radio controlled clocks often couldn’t pick up the WWVB signal in that area. I finally picked up a circa 1985 industrial electric clock for Ms. Teacherpants, and the only time it needed tweaking was after a power outage- sometimes going a whole school year without attention. One or two of the other teachers in her wing followed suit, and surprisingly, their clocks generally stayed within a few seconds of each other for long periods of time.
But seriously, is there a wrong time to buy a new DeSoto or Plymouth? I’d probably bite even if the big clock out front was taking a siesta!
Starting about 1900, IBM began supplying “Master” clocks for schools and factories, and the master clock would send out a signal every minute to the other clocks electrically connected to the master clock. These clocks were dependent on the master clock maintaining the correct time.
As WW2 began, the US Government realized they needed a synchronized system to guarantee the exact [and identical] time for all US military facilities, even in Alaska and Hawaii. The task was given to Western Union. Using a system dating back to the 1880s, a dedicated telegraph line was installed for each location needing the exact time. Every minute Western Union sent out an electrical pulse signal to forward the minute hand one position. There was also a backup set of 2 large Eveready wet cell batteries installed inside the clock to ensure if the signal line failed, it still kept time. The Clocks were manufactured and owned by The Self Winding Clock Co, and if one failed, it was quickly exchanged out for a new or rebuilt clock.
After the war ended and military base closures were rampant, the need for these clocks was far less critical, Western Union began offering a civilian version to private citizens and businesses, and the price was quite affordable, usually only $1.25/month. The system was called the Western Union Time Service. We will probably never know, but it’s quite possible the clock in the postcard is a Western Union synchronized clock. Western Union ended the service in the early 1960s.
As I’m also a vintage clock collector, I’ve owned several of the W. U. synchronized clocks including a rare USAF Sector Clock from the pilot’s briefing room, and one of the civilian clocks from the US Stock Exchange in NYC.
And Mr. Cowan, should you want one of the rare IBM Master clocks, I have one from around 1920. It’s a very large and heavy oak-cased pendulum wall clock, weighing about 100 pounds!
Bill I have a clock from 1911, I’ll have to go look up the brand and model, I don’t need it and would love to get it into a good home……
American made .
Thank you Nate, Best to take photo too. My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
Some time in the early 1930’s at the height of The Depression, Walter P. Chrysler made the decision that all Doge, De Soto and Chrysler dealers should also sell Plymouth and he offered Plymouth dealers one of the other brands. This was an effort to increase sales in the depressed market. I remember as late as 1971, an add, “Yes, yes, it’s time to say yes, at your Chrysler Plymouth dealer’s.” When the pairing with Plymouth was dropped I do not remember.
What year was this photo postcard produced? It looks to be around 1950-51, but is hard to tell from the picture. Anyone have a good guess at it?
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