Monday, April 12, 2010


A trip to Grand Avenue in Saint Paul is always pleasant, one of the few areas in the Twin Cities which has resisted franchises, with the result being a diverse mix of shops, restaurants and small businesses. On one of the restaurants there was this reminder from a bygone era. The beautiful sandstone and brick building from the 1920's used to house a Studebaker dealership, a car company which went bankrupt in the mid-sixties. It was an old corporation, starting as a coach maker in the 1850's. Its cars, with the exception of the Avanti, were somewhat dowdy. My dad had a couple, but by the time I was old enough to drive Studebakers were already collector's items.

There now seems to be a new wave of "Orphan" cars: Oldsmobile, Saturn, Pontiac maybe Saab and others. When I was young, car makes and models were a big thing, now- not so much, for me at least, most new cars are very similar.

By Professor Batty


Blogger Mary said...

The first family car I remember is my grandfather's Studebaker, probably in the early 1950's. Later I went to the senior prom in a Studebaker - my date had inherited it from his grandmother. It had a silver airplane as a hood ornament.

Blogger Professor Batty said...

I remember our old black '51- it had heat ducts in the back seat, and I remember how cozy I was there during the ride home from our Christmas get-togethers...

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