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A nondescript building at 217 Guthrie Street between Second and Third Streets was once a castellated Studebaker dealership. Up above is a view from 1947 where you can see the detailed brickwork of the building. At some point, the original facade was removed or covered up and replaced with the ugliness that’s there today.

(Branden Klayko / Broken Sidewalk)

I wonder if there’s anything of the original structure underneath the metal top half, but I would guess it was destroyed long ago. The back portion of the building still exists and is used for parking. It may not be all that grand, but it sure had character.

Louisville once had many Studebaker buildings across town. The Warren-Proctor dealership building is still on Shelby Street and Shelby Parkway (and here’s a view of the building in the early 1960s). Another building on Floyd Street between Caldwell Street and Ardella Court bears the name Studebaker surrounded by a wheel in terra cotta. It’s now the Paul Davis Restoration company. Anyone know of any others?

(Branden Klayko / Broken Sidewalk)
(Branden Klayko / Broken Sidewalk)

[Top image: Courtesy U of L Photographic Archives.]

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Branden Klayko

6 COMMENTS

  1. Hmmmm… my gut tells me that there might be something left under there; that sheet metal just looks to flimsy not to be covering something. Anyone have any dirt on this building's condition?

  2. What is currently Spindletop Draperies near the corner of Bardstown Rd. and Grindstead was a Studebaker dealer. I remember admiring the sleek and unique (at the time) Avanti, a last-ditch attempt to save the company, at that dealership just before Studebaker died.

  3. Thanks, Dylan. I had thought one of the facilities was used for production (I think the one in your photo), but I’m really not sure and don’t know the years of operation of each facility. Louisville back then, though, was a dense and thriving city, so if we can have half several dealerships for a single brand today, perhaps we could then as well.

  4. I work at the Speed Building and on my way home from work on Thursday, they were taking off the facade of the parking garage. I don’t know if the building is coming down, or rehabbed. But the columns from the top photo were present. The ornate brick work on the facade was no longer there.

  5. I know my mother bought a 1959 Studebaker Lark in the heart of st. Matthews there was a Studebaker dealership approximately where the Aamco Transmission Shop is now at Chenoweth Lane or rather Breckenridge Lane and Shelbyville Road

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