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A.T. Demarest & Co. New York CIty


Walt G
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A.T. Demarest & Co. were " manufacturers of fine Carriage and automobile Coachwork" according to their catalog issued in the era just prior to WWI. they were also the US dealers for Italia , Daimler and Renault cars. Many of the cars they sold had their Demarest coachwork as to import a car from Europe had always been expensive BUT was very much less in import duty/tax if shipped here minus any body as the car was then considered incomplete. Demarest at this era was prolific in its design and build of town landaulets, and their sales piece showed no other body style.

they also mentioned in a full page at the rear of their catalog that they did "Repairs to coach work and motors". They were located at the corner of Broadway and 57th street. This area right up into the 1930s was automobile row. I have a separate small vest pocket booklet issued by the Hotel Woodward that was in the same area that listed all the car dealerships in the 1918-1919 era. It also mentions  who were on staff to sell the cars, who owned the dealership, and what the chassis were that were available and body styles. That booklet is 32 pages long!

Another story yet to be told that would put a good perspective on the mindset and activity of the era . NY City and the port of NY along the Hudson river was the largest city to be able to accommodate all sorts of goods, cars etc from Europe when everything was moved by steam ship. A major rail line ran down the west side of Manhattan ( NY City ) that could easily be loaded and unloaded with heavy major goods, part of it was elevated and became what was known as the 'hi line".

Demarest&Co..jpg

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I have walked the length of the hi line many times. there is an interesting tv program on the two fellows who developed it into what it is today from the derelict abandon rusting structure it was. When you are on it and think of steam trains using the rails there and at ground level - on the ground pedestrians and horse travel had to be aware of the trains! It is not an attraction that is often mentioned as something to do. Can you imagine the trains on the elevated area that you show! The line ran through multi story buildings that were built around it.

Edited by Walt G (see edit history)
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Walt, very similar to the old US Post office in Chicago. When it was built it had a section built to accommodate a highway thru it. In the late 50’s early 60’s that highway became the Eisenhower expressway to the western suburbs. 
dave s 

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9 hours ago, Walt G said:

A.T. Demarest & Co. were " manufacturers of fine Carriage and automobile Coachwork" according to their catalog issued in the era just prior to WWI. they were also the US dealers for Italia , Daimler and Renault cars. Many of the cars they sold had their Demarest coachwork as to import a car from Europe had always been expensive BUT was very much less in import duty/tax if shipped here minus any body as the car was then considered incomplete. Demarest at this era was prolific in its design and build of town landaulets, and their sales piece showed no other body style.

they also mentioned in a full page at the rear of their catalog that they did "Repairs to coach work and motors". They were located at the corner of Broadway and 57th street. This area right up into the 1930s was automobile row. I have a separate small vest pocket booklet issued by the Hotel Woodward that was in the same area that listed all the car dealerships in the 1918-1919 era. It also mentions  who were on staff to sell the cars, who owned the dealership, and what the chassis were that were available and body styles. That booklet is 32 pages long!

Another story yet to be told that would put a good perspective on the mindset and activity of the era . NY City and the port of NY along the Hudson river was the largest city to be able to accommodate all sorts of goods, cars etc from Europe when everything was moved by steam ship. A major rail line ran down the west side of Manhattan ( NY City ) that could easily be loaded and unloaded with heavy major goods, part of it was elevated and became what was known as the 'hi line".

Demarest&Co..jpg

Interesting piece of automotive history

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6 hours ago, Twisted Shifter said:

 

 

San Francisco had a different Idea when it came to "repurposing" the area that the Embarcadero Freeway occupied. Note 1959 Cadillac limo, 58 Chevy, 55 Ford and more (top picture).

A monstrous mistake': Remembering the ugliest thing San Francisco ever built

0*LgM3e5npFm5IOiMv.

The old Embarcadero Freeway was a real eyesore. You can see the waterfront now with much better views thanks to the earthquake!

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Most Isotta Fraschini's that came to the USA came as a running chassis and then received bodies by Fleetwood of Pa. ( before Fleetwood was bought and now everyone only think of Cadillac having a body by them)   Again - there are whole stories of the automotive scene here  - of who was selling what, what cars had dealerships , locations of service areas ( most of the time separate from the showroom sales area) in N.Y. City.  N.Y. had a deep water port to allow the huge ocean liners a place to dock to unload , as well as load - Packard trucks went to Europe by boat for use in WWI. that is a story in itself.

N.Y. City ( Manhattan) was probably the most active place to see European cars arrive at , then head by train west - some went on boats too across the Great Lakes. Transportation by rail was the primary source for goods of any kind prior to WWII. You can track the path of most luxury cars of the WWI to 1932 era via the souvenir programs for the custom body salons - if you can get a full run for all 4 salons ( Chicago, NY, San Francisco and Los Angeles) one for each year, each show. I almost have that full run - has taken 50 years to assemble it but I know the location of the dealerships , street addresses, etc. and many of the people who were employed at the dealerships.

Plus the programs list who supplied what - seat springs, paint, cloth, hardware, etc.

Yes, it would make an interesting story to even trace the path of one make of car.

 

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18 minutes ago, Walt G said:

You can track the path of most luxury cars of the WWI to 1932 era via the souvenir programs for the custom body salons - if you can get a full run for all 4 salons ( Chicago, NY, San Francisco and Los Angeles) one for each year, each show.

Did any of those Salons take a 'detour' to Toronto at all? Or did they all remain within the USA?

 

Craig

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The NW Corner of Broadway and 57th was Chevrolet Dealership, it was in an old building about 5-6 stories high with spiral driveway to the roof where the used cars were stored. I was working as an apprentice in the connecting building next door in the 70's. I wonder if the dealership were the same building? The repair shop were on the mid levels connected by a massive freight elevators to the street. 

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USA only for the same organization from start to finish. Cost to transport completed cars by rail in an enclosed box car was very high and the majority of the coach builders that had exhibit space were east coast ,NE area of USA. The Hotel Commodore the locale of the NY Salon was built with the intention of having to host the salon and the architect drew up a rear entrance so cars could be brought in that way to the ballroom from a rail line that extended behind the hotel as Grand Central Station was right next door. Earlier salons were at the Hotel Astor until the Commodore was built.

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