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Terry Bond

History of a sign in my collection

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I love a good tale - and have often told the story of how I discovered this neat early Ford Garage advertising piece.

Years ago I purchased a fabulous antique tool cabinet full of tools, many of them used on Model Ts. The cabinet was at one time hung on the wall of an old Ford garage in West Manchester Ohio. Little did I realize when I purchased that cabinet, there was a cardboard sign tacked onto the back of it advertising the H.A. Geeting Ford Garage in West Manchester Ohio. The old cabinet is proudly mounted on the wall in my re-created old auto parts store. The sign, framed and on the wall. This past week, while driving home from the AACA Annual Grand National meet in Auburn Indiana, I ventured a bit off-course specifically to get a photo of the old garage it came from. I'm going to print out the photo, frame it, and display it along side the old sign. A quick internet search revealed that H.A. Getting was reputed to be one of the oldest Ford dealers in Ohio. It was a fabulous place, but unfortunately I could not get into the old building to see if anything remained. I fear the building will not be around much longer. Although it is a small community that time seems to have by-passed, the basement is full of water. Glad to have had the chance to stop and get the pic though.
Terry

H.A.Geetng sign.jpg

Model T tool cabinet.jpg

Geeting auto 2.jpg

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I can't tell you how amazed I am to see a post about the Geeting Auto Company and that artifacts still survive from it!

 

I am a 1962 model and spent my very early years in West Manchester.  My mother's family has history in the town from the early 1900s until my grandmother passed in 2010.  I vividly remember the Geeting Auto Company.  You are correct that it was one of the oldest Ford dealers in Ohio - some claim the oldest, but I couldn't verify that.  In the building overhang on the right side of your photo, there were Sinclair gasoline pumps back in the day.

 

Harvey Geeting lived across the street from the building and at one time owned a 1903 Ford which I recall getting to see one time.  I believe the car went to the Preble County Historical Society when he passed.  Somewhere I still have a newspaper article about him and his car.

 

Thank you, sir, for bringing back the memories!

 

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Posted (edited)

As mentioned before I was once infested by Jaguars but took the cure, Still have a few pieces left (really need to clean things out when it gets cooler again). This one is 8' 6" tall.

 

Bought somewhere around 1973 for $75 from a defunct dealer when I had my last E-type & has followed me through four moves.

 

jagsign.jpg

Edited by padgett (see edit history)

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Terry,

             I agree, this is very cool. I don't know how far this building is from your house, but if it were me, and knowing it's destruction is imminent I'd contact the owner and make an appointment to view the interior of the building to, at the very least, photo-log this terrific piece of history. Maybe I'm just weird that way. But once it's gone, it's really gone forever.

A telephone call and a small investment in time could prove very rewarding.

Greg

 

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Google only 'drives' down the main north-south street, but the building may have more time left than it would in other towns. This is still standing in West Manchester :

Screen Shot 2019-06-06 at 10.31.18 PM.png

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13 hours ago, GregLaR said:

Terry,

             I agree, this is very cool. I don't know how far this building is from your house, but if it were me, and knowing it's destruction is imminent I'd contact the owner and make an appointment to view the interior of the building to, at the very least, photo-log this terrific piece of history. Maybe I'm just weird that way. But once it's gone, it's really gone forever.

A telephone call and a small investment in time could prove very rewarding.

Greg

 

Unfortunately it's 12 hours east of us and I just drove by on our way to the meet in Auburn, which was still about 4 hours north of West Manchester.   I don't know when the building was closed but it's locked now, and there was a ladder leaning up against the back side as if someone had been up on the roof to do some repairs.  There were a couple of pick-up trucks parked in back and some evidence that whoever owns the building uses it for storage or perhaps to work on their own cars.  The small door at the right of the picture was open and led to stairs to the basement of the building, however it was filled with water up to about the sixth step, so impossible to go any further or see anything inside there.  It was a quiet Sunday afternoon when we were there and nobody was around.  There are a couple of lived-in houses nearby but we were pressed for time so didn't start knocking on doors.   Maybe someone living nearby can have the pleasure of contacting the owner and getting in for some photographs.   We'll be back in that area again later this year with more time on our hands so maybe we can work on contacting the owner between now and then.  Would love to find some period photos of the garage actually in use during the teens/twenties.

Terry

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Terry

If the town has a local newspaper or historical society ( or if there is even a county historical society) a letter to them seeking period photos would be the best possibility. Or to the town asking if there is a local historian that can be contacted. In N.Y.. State there is a state historians society one can belong to that has information on all the local historians so far as contact information , I wonder if Ohio does as well ( I know about the NY State activity since I have been the historian for my village for 47 years, wrote a book for Arcadia a decade ago on our village etc)

Thanks you so much for sharing this with us, it is just GRAND, both in an automotive sense as well as structure, building and business sense.

Walt Gosden

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Great story, Terry.

 

You are lucky the building remains—when I was researching my 1985, both the dealer it was delivered to (Fred Bauer Chevrolet) and the actual building in Portland, OR were long gone. Beyond that, there were no pictures from within 20 years of the date I needed—and I did contact the relevant historical society and make a site visit.

 

Auto dealerships seem so ephemeral. If there isn't a postcard or advertisement like the ones Alden Jewell and others collect, they seem to just disappear …

 

Car Dealerships Set 1

 

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Great Link! I recognize some of the dealerships located on Long Island, one the building is still there but now a tire shop

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On 6/7/2019 at 2:59 PM, Jeff Hansen said:

Mr. Gosden has a good idea.  West Manchester is in Preble County.  Here is the URL for the Preble County Historical Society:  http://www.preblecountyhistoricalsociety.com/index.html .  I hope this helps.

 

Jeff

Thanks Jeff, I've looked at that site and obtained earlier pics (posted here) as well as info on the 1903 Ford that was donated to them.  These pics show a different building, but it may be the home next door, and the brick structure came after. 

Terry

 

H.A. Geeting Ford garage first pic.jpg

H.A.Geeting Ford Garage side view.jpg

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On 6/7/2019 at 2:59 PM, Jeff Hansen said:

Mr. Gosden has a good idea.

 

Jeff

Ok Fellas, my name is Walt! I taught art for 40 years and you know how many times I heard the words  "Mr. Gosden" from the 1,200 students a week that passed through the door of my classroom?

Plus being the local village historian I get the Mr. Gosden as well. I sincerely appreciate the respect, I really do, but in the old car world I have been in for 55+ years I go by Walt - PLEASE 😁

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On 6/6/2019 at 10:41 PM, WQ59B said:

Google only 'drives' down the main north-south street, but the building may have more time left than it would in other towns. This is still standing in West Manchester :

Screen Shot 2019-06-06 at 10.31.18 PM.png

 

Michael Funeral Chapel.  It's seen better days.  There was a basketball court on the second floor.  So sad...

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I happen to be a Realtor and on Sunday, June 30, 2019, I am showing a home in West Manchester. In the Write Up, it said "This one of a kind home was built in 1931 by Harvey Geeting". Not know who Harvey Geeting was, I did a google search and found this post. Very interesting. I have attached a picture of the home I am showing, you can also see it if you google 210 S. Main St, West Manchester, OH 45382.

GetMedia.ashx.jpeg

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I happen to be a Realtor and on Sunday, June 30, 2019, I am showing a home in West Manchester. In the Write Up, it said "This one of a kind home was built in 1931 by Harvey Geeting". Not know who Harvey Geeting was, I did a google search and found this post. Very interesting. I have attached a picture of the home I am showing, you can also see it if you google 210 S. Main St, West Manchester, OH 45382.

GetMedia.ashx.jpeg

Screen Shot 2019-06-26 at 9.10.57 AM.jpg

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Old garage to the left, new brick garage to the right, home across the street..I love old towns with a story. As Kenny Rogers sang " Life was so much easier 20 years ago"

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Terry here's something you might find interesting
Geeting Auto Oct 15, 1914 - Feb 28, 1991 In business over 75 years.
I'll send you a PM on the documentation.

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Thanks for posting "a picture from the past". I attended the Auction they had in the 1970's to dispose of some Parts.

I should still have the Sale bill someplace, and maybe even of a picture taken then. It was advertised then as being the oldest continuous operating FORD dealer in the U.S.

According to the Ford-Dealer related magazine FORD DEALER & SERVICE FIELD, dated JUNE  1934,  H. A. Geeting Auto Co. had been in business 20 Years at the time (or 1914).

Bob Lincoln. 

 

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