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  • Gone

    Studebaker factory building #70 (the Freeman Spicer building), former home of the Studebaker National Museum is now an unrecognizable pile of rubble.The last of the concrete beams and pillars supporting the second floor should be down by tonight.
    The demolition crews are down to the last section of building #78. As of 8:00 AM this morning only the last( farthest north ) bay of the building is left standing along with one stairwell/elevator shaft from building #79.
    This leaves only buildings #78-Machine Shop and the attached building #95-Industrial Relations, building #85-Foundry, #92-Engineering, #62-Administration, and buildings #84, 112& 113-Body and Trim fabrication stand from Plants 1 and 2.
    By the end of the Decade, our City Fathers will probably manage to destroy all traces of Studebakers presence in the down town area.

    R2Andy
    R2Andrea

  • #2
    Don't be too pessimistic. The city has not been able to attract good tenants for 40 years for many of them. To expect them to hang on to dangerously dilapidated buildings forever is not realistic and not in the best interests of the future of South Bend. I know that if those buildings were in MY town, I would have wanted many of them torn down, too. I hope the engineering and main office administration buildings can be saved, but as for the others, well...

    I do wish I could get my hands on one of the little guard buildings, though and move it where I live, to fix it up.

    I'm a devoted fan of historic preservation, but there are simply some buildings that can never be renovated and outside of sentimental value have little to recommend them. Most factories fall into this category and cannot even lay claim to any architectural interest or significance.
    "Madness...is the exception in individuals, but the rule in groups" - Nietzsche.

    Comment


    • #3
      Don't be too pessimistic. The city has not been able to attract good tenants for 40 years for many of them. To expect them to hang on to dangerously dilapidated buildings forever is not realistic and not in the best interests of the future of South Bend. I know that if those buildings were in MY town, I would have wanted many of them torn down, too. I hope the engineering and main office administration buildings can be saved, but as for the others, well...

      I do wish I could get my hands on one of the little guard buildings, though and move it where I live, to fix it up.

      I'm a devoted fan of historic preservation, but there are simply some buildings that can never be renovated and outside of sentimental value have little to recommend them. Most factories fall into this category and cannot even lay claim to any architectural interest or significance.
      "Madness...is the exception in individuals, but the rule in groups" - Nietzsche.

      Comment


      • #4
        quote:Originally posted by Scott
        I'm a devoted fan of historic preservation, but there are simply some buildings that can never be renovated and outside of sentimental value have little to recommend them.
        I have to agree with that...

        In 2004 I built a new home on the site of the house I grew up in. The house was totally shot and literally falling down. My brother and I both knew it was at the end of its useful life, but it was awfully hard to pull the trigger... the day it actually came down there was a tear or 2 shed, believe me...

        Today I live in a new, state of the art home that's just like I wanted it... and my office, where I'm sitting now, offers the same view the living room window afforded my whole childhood...[^]

        My point is: Everything there is is for a limited period of time; and sometimes clear, logical thinking has to override emotions. Here's hoping the site(s) of the old Stude buildings are used to build some new productivity that'll honor the previous users!

        Robert K. Andrews Owner- IoMT (Island of Misfit Toys!)
        Parish, central NY 13131
        http://www.cardomain.com/ride/2358680/1

        Comment


        • #5
          quote:Originally posted by Scott
          I'm a devoted fan of historic preservation, but there are simply some buildings that can never be renovated and outside of sentimental value have little to recommend them.
          I have to agree with that...

          In 2004 I built a new home on the site of the house I grew up in. The house was totally shot and literally falling down. My brother and I both knew it was at the end of its useful life, but it was awfully hard to pull the trigger... the day it actually came down there was a tear or 2 shed, believe me...

          Today I live in a new, state of the art home that's just like I wanted it... and my office, where I'm sitting now, offers the same view the living room window afforded my whole childhood...[^]

          My point is: Everything there is is for a limited period of time; and sometimes clear, logical thinking has to override emotions. Here's hoping the site(s) of the old Stude buildings are used to build some new productivity that'll honor the previous users!

          Robert K. Andrews Owner- IoMT (Island of Misfit Toys!)
          Parish, central NY 13131
          http://www.cardomain.com/ride/2358680/1

          Comment


          • #6
            You know, they could clear some of the blight and make a really nice site for hundreds of Studebakers to meet when we have our international meets there. That would be a good use of some of the land (in my opinion).
            "Madness...is the exception in individuals, but the rule in groups" - Nietzsche.

            Comment


            • #7
              You know, they could clear some of the blight and make a really nice site for hundreds of Studebakers to meet when we have our international meets there. That would be a good use of some of the land (in my opinion).
              "Madness...is the exception in individuals, but the rule in groups" - Nietzsche.

              Comment


              • #8
                I have to agree with Scott. I am a contract archaeologist who occasionally works on historical sites. Physical preservation of such sites is often impossible but we make every effort to preserve their memory through excavation if needed, and through compiling all the data we can find for curation in a responsible repository. While I haven't had the oppertunity to visit the Studebaker National Museum, I believe that the old Studebaker plant is well represented there with photographs, records, cars, oral history, portions of the actual manufacturing machinery, and so forth. In fact, this is the best-preserved and documented historic industrial site I have ever heard of, and all of this information is readily available to those of us who care. While the old buildings will eventually fall to progress, Studebaker's legacy will live on in South Bend, and elsewhere, thanks to the Museum and those who made it possible.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I have to agree with Scott. I am a contract archaeologist who occasionally works on historical sites. Physical preservation of such sites is often impossible but we make every effort to preserve their memory through excavation if needed, and through compiling all the data we can find for curation in a responsible repository. While I haven't had the oppertunity to visit the Studebaker National Museum, I believe that the old Studebaker plant is well represented there with photographs, records, cars, oral history, portions of the actual manufacturing machinery, and so forth. In fact, this is the best-preserved and documented historic industrial site I have ever heard of, and all of this information is readily available to those of us who care. While the old buildings will eventually fall to progress, Studebaker's legacy will live on in South Bend, and elsewhere, thanks to the Museum and those who made it possible.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I must agree. Sentimental though they may be, these old buildings have become dangerous. None of us have stepped forward to maintain or resurrect them.
                    Three cheers for the city of South Bend for investing in a venue to maintain the memory and historic records of an industry that chose to put 9/10ths of the population out of work in 1964. There were a couple decades when the name Studebaker was a dirty word in that town.
                    The fact the buildings have survived so long is due to the lack of funds to remove them.
                    If one building could be saved for historic reference, which should it be?

                    Brad Johnson
                    Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
                    33 Rockne 10
                    51 Commander Starlight
                    53 Commander Starlight

                    previously: 63 Cruiser, 62 Regal VI, 60 VI convertible, 50 LandCruiser
                    "All attempts to 'rise above the issue' are simply an excuse to avoid it profitably." --Dick Gregory

                    Brad Johnson, SDC since 1975, ASC since 1990
                    Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
                    sigpic'33 Rockne 10, '51 Commander Starlight, '53 Commander Starlight "Désirée"

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I must agree. Sentimental though they may be, these old buildings have become dangerous. None of us have stepped forward to maintain or resurrect them.
                      Three cheers for the city of South Bend for investing in a venue to maintain the memory and historic records of an industry that chose to put 9/10ths of the population out of work in 1964. There were a couple decades when the name Studebaker was a dirty word in that town.
                      The fact the buildings have survived so long is due to the lack of funds to remove them.
                      If one building could be saved for historic reference, which should it be?

                      Brad Johnson
                      Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
                      33 Rockne 10
                      51 Commander Starlight
                      53 Commander Starlight

                      previously: 63 Cruiser, 62 Regal VI, 60 VI convertible, 50 LandCruiser
                      "All attempts to 'rise above the issue' are simply an excuse to avoid it profitably." --Dick Gregory

                      Brad Johnson, SDC since 1975, ASC since 1990
                      Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
                      sigpic'33 Rockne 10, '51 Commander Starlight, '53 Commander Starlight "Désirée"

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Where are all the crack heads and homeless people going to move to if they tear them all down?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Where are all the crack heads and homeless people going to move to if they tear them all down?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            The Administration Building, YES! definetely the Administration Building, count me as voting for that![^]

                            quote:Originally posted by rockne10

                            If one building could be saved for historic reference, which should it be?
                            Brad Johnson
                            StudeRich
                            Studebakers Northwest
                            Ferndale, WA
                            StudeRich
                            Second Generation Stude Driver,
                            Proud '54 Starliner Owner

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              The Administration Building, YES! definetely the Administration Building, count me as voting for that![^]

                              quote:Originally posted by rockne10

                              If one building could be saved for historic reference, which should it be?
                              Brad Johnson
                              StudeRich
                              Studebakers Northwest
                              Ferndale, WA
                              StudeRich
                              Second Generation Stude Driver,
                              Proud '54 Starliner Owner

                              Comment

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