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HUB
05-12-2005, 07:49 PM
Where were you when you heard the news that Studebaker had packed up? I can tell you where I was because the memory is so vivid it might be yesterday. I was 15 years old and riding the school bus home from Dresden to Thamesville, Ontario on #21 highway. The bus radio was tuned to CKLW Detroit as usual, we were just coming through Wabash, and I can recall so clearly hearing the news announcer break in to report that Studebaker had ceased production. My heart dropped through the floorboards:( - I was never going to own a new Studebaker! I'd grown up with Studes; bulletnose, Champ & President sedans. Dad had switched to Fords when the local Studebaker dealership had packed it in but my loyalty was strictly Stude and many hours of classes during Grades 9 and 10 had been spent covering my notebooks with drawings of wheelstanding Hawks, Larks and Avantis sporting Cragar mags and oversize rear tires.[}:)]
And what seemed really unjust about the whole affair was that our village had just gotten a dealership again. The local B/A gas station had two new 1966 Studes sitting out front. They are well imprinted on my memory as I walked home past them every day after school when I got off the bus. A sand beige 2 dr Commander and a medium blue 4 dr Cruiser. I waged a campaign of persuasion with Dad, hoping he might go for the Cruiser but to no avail. He had just recently purchased a '66 Ford LTD and wasn't interested in buying an orphan. They sat for a while and then disappeared. The following year I turned 16, got my license and switched my allegiance to AMC. (Yes, I always rooted for the underdog.) Got my first car in 1969[8D], a medium green Rambler 2dr, 6 cyl., 3 on the tree. My kids can't believe it when I tell them that the windshield washers on that car were operated by pumping a rubber bulb on the floor with your foot!
Oh yeah - I did persuade Dad to go AMC as well and he did it in style in a '68 Ambassador SST 2dr hardtop, dark forest green 290V8 with 4spd tranny. Wish I still had that one.....and the red bulletnose.....and the black President.....too many cars, too little time.....:D. But I digress...where were you when you heard the news????

JDP
05-12-2005, 08:14 PM
I was at work making 64 Studebaker bumpers at the Rockwell Standard bumper plant in Elkart In. The word passed though the plant like lighting. The nest day, my buddies and I wore Black arm bands. :)

64 R2 4 speed Challenger (Plain Wrapper)
63 R2 4 speed GT Hawk
55 Speedster
50 2R 10 truck

studeclunker
05-12-2005, 09:59 PM
Running a hay rake on Mr. Wilson's ranch, Mt. Lassen CA. I used to listen to the radio while working. Stopped the tractor and shut it down to hear more clearly. Mr. Wilson had a 63 Cruiser and was really bummed out.[V] So was I.:( Studes always seemed just a bit classier than the average American car.[8D]

Lotsa Larks!
Studeclunker
A.K.A: out2lunch

nm dude
05-13-2005, 12:43 AM
Well, if you mean March of 1966, I read it in the Detroit Free Press, ran down to Renger`s Sales & Service in Detroit, and bought a new Daytona Sport Sedan off the showroom floor for $2056! Swore I would keep it forever, and drive it sparingly. Forever is a long time and six months later wife wanted a new house, so with only 1,100 miles on the odometer, the car was sold.

DEEPNHOCK
05-13-2005, 09:24 AM
I remember it...sort of[?].
I was in 4th grade.
Had a gorgeous single attractive sultry teacher that year (that I lusted for, but didn't know quite why....yet)[:p]
My dad had ordered a '61 Hawk from the factory in '61 to help Studebaker, and I remember him at supper saying how sad it was to see a once great company toss in the towel in the fight with the big three.
Too bad I had to grow up...
Jeff[8D]



[quote]Originally posted by HUB

Where were you when you heard the news that Studebaker had packed up?

DEEPNHOCK@worldnet.att.net
'61 Hawk
'37 Coupe Express
http://community.webshots.com/user/deepnhock

JDP
05-13-2005, 09:40 AM
Funny that it never occured to me that some consider the end came in 1966. As a 21 year old Studebaker nut in South Bend, the end came in Dec 63. After they dropped the Hawk, the Avanti and the Studebaker engine, most of us lost interest in the line. The date they closed in Canada was nothing to me personally.

64 R2 4 speed Challenger (Plain Wrapper)
63 R2 4 speed GT Hawk
55 Speedster
50 2R 10 truck

PaulDriver
05-13-2005, 05:19 PM
Studebaker ceased U.S. production on Dec 9th, 1963, and Canadian production on March 4th, 1966.

So, I have no memories of the actual shutdown, under two weeks old when the Hamilton plant shut down.

BUT, I got to hear about it for the next 30 years from my Grandfather :)

He was from South Dakota, and apparently Studebaker was almost a religion with his family.

Sam Roberts
05-13-2005, 05:24 PM
Are you sure about those dates?[:0]


quote:Originally posted by PaulDriver

Studebaker ceased U.S. production on Dec 9th, 1963, and Canadian production on March 4th, 1966.

So, I have no memories of the actual shutdown, under two weeks old when the Hamilton plant shut down.

BUT, I got to hear about it for the next 30 years from my Grandfather :)

He was from South Dakota, and apparently Studebaker was almost a religion with his family.


Sam Roberts

PaulDriver
05-13-2005, 05:40 PM
quote:Originally posted by Sam Roberts

Are you sure about those dates?[:0]


http://www.studebakermuseum.org/studestory2.htm says December 1963 and March 1966

The dates I used come from my Grandad's 'Studebaker Binder', and it contains newspaper clippings about the closures.

Not that those dates are any more trust worthy then anything printed in a news paper today.

dpson
05-13-2005, 06:21 PM
It's kind of funny I had no Studebaker connection in my family, my dad owned Oldsmobiles all through the 60's and 70's and he had no love for Studebaker's which rusted out in about two years in this part of the country. To this day I remember watching TV, probably the CBS news (we only got two channels CBS & NBC at that time) the evening they announced that Studebaker had quit the automotive business. I was only 12 but was sadened that one more of the old American car companies had left the industry.

1960 Lark Convertible
1962 GT Hawk

Sam Roberts
05-13-2005, 06:24 PM
December 20, 1963 in South Bend, and March 17, 1966 in Hamilton were the dates I have been led to believe were final assembly dates for passenger cars. I think what you quoted were announcement dates that production would cease respectively.


quote:Originally posted by PaulDriver


quote:Originally posted by Sam Roberts

Are you sure about those dates?[:0]


http://www.studebakermuseum.org/studestory2.htm says December 1963 and March 1966

The dates I used come from my Grandad's 'Studebaker Binder', and it contains newspaper clippings about the closures.

Not that those dates are any more trust worthy then anything printed in a news paper today.


Sam Roberts

PaulDriver
05-13-2005, 07:44 PM
quote:Originally posted by Sam Roberts

December 20, 1963 in South Bend, and March 17, 1966 in Hamilton were the dates I have been led to believe were final assembly dates for passenger cars. I think what you quoted were announcement dates that production would cease respectively.

Sam Roberts


Quite probably.

BobPalma
05-13-2005, 10:40 PM
Senior in High School. 'Came home from school and Mom met me at the door, afraid that I had heard the news elsewhere and might do myself in. I hadn't yet heard the news and so she was able to put me on watch for the next couple days <G>. BP

BP

wagone
05-14-2005, 10:32 AM
The date December 9,1963 when the announcement was made didn't mean as much to me as to my dad and I felt bad for him as he had been driving Studes for about 15 years by that time. I was 21 at the time of the announcement and, although I drove a '54 C body Champion coupe at that time, the news was not as important to me as I was in- to Corvettes and in general Chevys. I liked the Studes, though the performence advantage was strongly in favor of the GM product at that time. I've since "grown up" some and now have an R2 Avanti as my main toy. As to how I heard the news, my dad brought it home from work as he'd heard it on the car radio. Of course the news wasn't a great shock as the automotive side of the business had been sliding rather severely for some years. I take my hat off to all the younger guys who have stuck with the Studes all these years--I wish I had done that as I only fairly recently purchased my '63. But it appears that quite a few young guys who weren't even around in '63 have become smitten with the cars and this is great.
Wagone in Iowa

Roscomacaw
05-14-2005, 12:45 PM
The shutdown in SB and in Hamilton meant nothing to me. I was a young guy in the Air Force and didn't even own my own first car until late '66 (a Dodge). While my dad had owned a 53 Nash for a time (and was all praise for it until the block cracked) and a good family friend had a 51 Kaiser that I rode in frequently, that's as close to orphan makes as I'd ever gotten. Studebakers were just another brand of car that I was aware of.
I remember being intrigued by a finned Hawk on one car-seeking foray into a used car lot with my dad along about 1959 or 60. Dad had turned to Ford products by then and I think he'd developed a bit of an allegiance to them - but it couldn't have been that strong because after a few of them he bought a Buick.[}:)]
The only other memory I have about Studes when they were in business is my dad noting their annoucement of the new Avanti while reading the Toledo Blade one evening. I remember taking a gander at the picture that accompanied the ad.
Studebakers were something I discoverd thru a friend and co-worker in 1973. I was working in a resto shop in Georgia and had no hope whatsoever of owning the sort of cars we worked on (Bugattis and Dusenbergs and the like) but couldn't abide the boringly common 57 Chevy or 56 Ford.[xx(] If I was gonna drive an oldie - it was gonna have to be different and attractive. Viola![:0] Studebaker! Dirt cheap, definitly different, lotsa cheap NOS parts and damned serviceable transportation as well.;) So it is to this day.
And frankly, I'm GLAD they went under. They'd be just another struggling car company (or worse, just another badge name of some foreign operation!) if they'd lived on.[^]

Miscreant at large.

raprice
05-14-2005, 02:31 PM
It was upsetting enough, when Studebaker closed down in South Bend. But I was even more shocked when they closed down in Hamilton. I was under the impression that Studebaker/Worthington was actually turning a profit. Along with the cars, they had some very successful subsidiaries such as STP, Paxton Superchargers, and Worthington, who at the time, were producing private label home appliances. My understanding was that the decision was made to get out of the car business regardless of any success coming out of Hamilton. I don't know if this is the truth.
Rog

Roscomacaw
05-14-2005, 06:23 PM
Roger,
They were actualy in the black a bit at Hamilton. But as you say - the board was (actualy, had been for some time)determined to divorce itself from auto making.:(

Miscreant at large.

jpapai
05-15-2005, 10:31 AM
I was a sophomore in college when Studebaker went out of business in South Bend. Since I was attending Notre Dame to study Industrial Design and transportation design, I was "in mourning" over their passing. People like Raymond Loewy and Brooks Stevens were heroes to me, and it was because of their Studebaker designs that I became interested in "design". Studebaker design innovation is almost a religion to me,and it is thrilling to me to see a hobby to preserve them thrive thirty nine years after their passing.

They would have never survived today without becoming global in some way. Interestingly, they were involved with with Porsche and Mercedes during the '50s, and were talking with a forerunner of Toyota in the '60s, when they went out of domestic production. There were even talks set up with Willys. Current cars '53 cpe and 76 Avanti