Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Buick Assembly In St Louis.

A story from “The Accessory And Garage Journal” in 1919, which was explaining all of the 37 million dollar G.M. expansion’s scheduled for 1919. This is just the St Louis, Missouri part of the story.

This is the news about Buick assembly entirely returning to Flint, Michigan.

This photo (from the Buick Research Gallery in Flint, Michigan) shows the combined Buick and Chevrolet assembly plant in St Louis, Missouri in 1920. This was the first joint venture of this kind for General Motors. This first joint operation did not last very long, with all Buick production returning to Flint in 1921. The next such venture was in 1932 at the Linden, New Jersey plant and then in 1936 at the South gate plant in California. The Buick portion of this large plant was eventually taken over by the Fisher Body Co. that started them on their journey of placing their body plants in close proximity to the assembly plant. It would take until 1985 for this to happen with Buick in Flint. This first venture of Buick assembly outside of Flint (not counting the Canadian McLaughlin) came about because of a rail car shortage that had cars being shipped in pieces to Minneapolis, Minnesota and assembled in a warehouse for distribution out west. See Pence Automobile Co. . This idea of sending all parts to another location for assembly appealed to the top men at Buick but the warehouse in Minneapolis did not quite fit the bill. This was why the St Louis assembly idea came about. The St Louis plant was closed in 1987 and was producing trucks at that time.  Link for the Pence factory.  The St. Louis Buick service department here.

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