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John M. Studebaker Electric Fountain found

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  • John M. Studebaker Electric Fountain found

    The fountain was donated to South Bend In 1906 and erected in Howard Park which is on the river on East Jefferson Blvd. Half of the fountain has been in storage for years but the other half which was thought lost forever has been discovered and was owned by a gentleman who bought it to scrap but couldn't find it in his heart I am told. The electric fountain still has one bowl missing and was cast iron and painted green and red.Don't know why it was ever taken down or what the city plans on doing with it but something should be done with it's beauty and history. There are original pictures of it on the internet

  • #2
    That's great!
    I think the Indiana museum that's with the SNM had one of the turtles on display. I bought a post card of it off of ebay. I think the basin is still there in the park. I thought it was all gone. Neat! Thanks!

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    • #3

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      • #4
        Thanks again.

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        • #5
          After further investigation I guess it was bronze, 28' tall and 34' across and cost $10,000 in 1906. That's a lot of beans in today's money.

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          • #6
            I always wondered what happened to the fountian. I spent a large part of my youth in Howard park but never seen it. It must have been taken down before the late 50s. Is the part owned by the gentleman safe? Or for sale?

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            • #7
              What does the park look like without it? Seems pointless to remove it.

              Chris.

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              • #8
                I believe it was donated to a local historical society and I know the City knows about it because I suggested they put it in the new Studebaker Plaza being erected downtown but they said it was to big. I also would ice skate at Howard Park in the fifties and don't remember it. There is a war monument in the area it was in now.There is also a very interesting document in the history of Saint Joseph County which is about the dedication ceremony and speech by Mr. Studebaker. It also describes the fountains splendor in much more detail. I hope someone can add more to how and why it was removed and let's hope South Bend puts it in someplace of prominence and doesn't let it slip away

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by tjanowia View Post
                  After further investigation I guess it was bronze, 28' tall and 34' across and cost $10,000 in 1906. That's a lot of beans in today's money.
                  $251,615 in 2012 (that's a lot of dollars, I did not try to convert to beans <G>).
                  Gary L.
                  Wappinger, NY

                  SDC member since 1968
                  Studebaker enthusiast much longer

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                  • #10
                    it's approximately 1,383,882,500 beans @ $12 a bushel.....pinto beans that is.
                    Bez Auto Alchemy
                    573-318-8948
                    http://bezautoalchemy.com


                    "Don't believe every internet quote" Abe Lincoln

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                    • #11
                      I wouldn't have thought you could build something like that for that $251,615 today. It is quite a piece of art. I certainly hope that it is somehow put back together and put prominently on display somewhere, in working order.
                      Joe Roberts
                      '61 R1 Champ
                      '65 Cruiser
                      Eastern North Carolina Chapter

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                      • #12
                        Is there anything we could do as The Studebaker Club to appeal to the city to grant John's wishes that it be here long after he is gone as he stated in his speech when presenting it to the city.They wrote that eight to ten thousand people showed up for the ceremony.

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                        • #13
                          In order to keep it going I should think it would need to be re-erected and then designated as a historical landmark.
                          Mike O'Handley, Cat Herder Third Class
                          Kenmore, Washington
                          hausdok@msn.com

                          '58 Packard Hawk
                          '05 Subaru Baja Turbo
                          '71 Toyota Crown Coupe
                          '69 Pontiac Firebird
                          (What is it with me and discontinued/orphan cars?)

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