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JIM: Chelf Motor Co. became Columbia Motor Co - Aug 1928
While this story is primarily about the change of ownership of the local Chevrolet Dealership from The Chelf Motor Company to The Columbia Motor Company, it also relates the the lineage of Columbia's funeral homes and to Coomer's Store, as well.
Related photo of the building where The Chelf Motor Company, The Columbia Motor Company, Coomer's Store, now a part of Stotts-Phelps-McQueary Funeral Home is located: Coomer's Store - How many years ago?
In late May 1928, the Adair County News reported that Mrs. J.F. Patteson (nee Bess Coffey) was having a garage building erected "on her lot between the County Jail and Grissom & Patteson's Undertaking Establishment." The article referred to the edifice, already well under construction, as "a modern concrete structure with a fancy brick front" that would be "complete in every detail."
No additional mention found its way into the paper until the latter part of August, when the News revealed the Greensburg Street project was nearing completion. The article gave a few more particulars, saying the structure was "a concrete building with a handsome brick face having spacious show rooms in front and large storage and work rooms in the rear and basement" and concluded by naming the first occupant as Chelf Motor Company, the local Chevrolet dealership.
However, just two or three days after the above announcement appeared and before the move occurred, Mr. L.R. Chelf sold his interest in the operation to Paul Johnson of Coburg. Mr. Johnson and co-owners D.O. Eubank and M.B. Bunnell immediately changed the company name to Columbia Motor Company. In reporting this in the September 4, 1928 edition, the News stated that Mr. Martin Johnson, "an excellent mechanic with years of experience," would work there and represent his brother Paul. Additionally, two other experienced mechanics, Mont Darnell and Robert Riall, would remain with the company through the changeover in ownership and location.
Moving day was designated as Thursday, September 5th and the doors of the newly-named Columbia Motor Company opened on Friday for inspection by the public. (An image of the opening day announcement appears elsewhere.)
Columbia Motor remained in the Patteson building on Greensburg Street for almost twenty-nine years before moving to new digs on Campbellsville Street sometime between early March 1957 and the end of June that year. The last ad with the Greensburg Street address appeared in March 6 edition of the paper; the June 26th edition carried the first ad with the Campbellsville Street location.
This story was posted on 2018-02-08 07:43:45
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