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Old 08-17-2015, 05:11 PM   #1
XDCX
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Default Abandoned Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge Dealership on Route 66 in New Mexico

A couple of weeks ago I was making a road trip from Cadillac, MI to Phoenix, AZ and found myself traveling through parts of New Mexico that I had never been to before.

I was traveling on I-40 but decided to take an exit and follow Route 66 so I could find someplace to stop for dinner. As I was driving down Route 66 I saw what looked like an old Dodge Brand Sign in the distance. As I tried to convince myself it couldn't be an old Dodge Brand Sign because they've all been switched out I discovered that not only is it an old Dodge Brand Sign, it's standing in front of an abandoned Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge store.

Here's a picture:

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I haven't had a chance to do any research - I don't know when the store died or who owned it when it went out of business. The nearest city is Grants, NM.
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It was a somewhat surreal experience - while much of what's on Route 66 is in a form of abandonment or disrepair I wasn't expecting to see an old CJDR store as part of my detour.
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Old 08-19-2015, 02:11 PM   #2
steve_biegler
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http://www.blackenterprise.com/be-li...ive-group-inc/

https://www.google.com/maps/@35.1467...7i13312!8i6656

Looks like an old Ford sign is in the picture.

https://www.google.com/maps/@35.1477...7i13312!8i6656

Last edited by steve_biegler; 08-19-2015 at 03:05 PM.
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Old 08-19-2015, 03:24 PM   #3
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if you click on the turn lane right in front of the dealership at Smith Street, it takes you to a photo dated 2007, when the dealership was still open!! I've never seen this before.....how cool!! Then there is a pulldown where you can see 2008 where the dealership is marked with a "We've Moved" sign, and then the present 2015 view.....try it!!
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Old 08-20-2015, 10:35 AM   #4
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https://www.google.com/maps/@35.1474...!7i3328!8i1664

https://www.google.com/maps/@35.1474...!7i3328!8i1664

July 2008 then December 2008.
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Old 08-20-2015, 05:21 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steve_biegler View Post
Steve - Great research - thanks for the link.

It's interesting to learn that the store used to be owned by Ed Corley who now controls one of the largest African American owned Dealer Groups in the nation. I wonder if Mr. Corley got his start via Chrysler's MID program and if so I wonder what location he started at?

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Originally Posted by steve_biegler View Post
Great use of Google Street View.

I thought that old Ford Brand Sign was cool too - I took a picture of it with my Droid Maxx - I'll find the photo and add it to this thread.
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Old 08-20-2015, 05:31 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tnpartsguy View Post
if you click on the turn lane right in front of the dealership at Smith Street, it takes you to a photo dated 2007, when the dealership was still open!! I've never seen this before.....how cool!! Then there is a pulldown where you can see 2008 where the dealership is marked with a "We've Moved" sign, and then the present 2015 view.....try it!!
That is a cool feature that Google added to Street View about a year ago. Just look for the small clock (meant to symbolize "history") in the upper left corner of the Street View page and the drop down box will show earlier dates when Google drove down the same street and captured images.

I checked the address on the "We've Moved" sign and I think it's just a used car lot - not a franchised dealership.
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Old 08-20-2015, 05:36 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steve_biegler View Post
Very interesting.

The store looked pretty vibrant in July, 2008 and pretty desolate by December, 2008.

It is interesting to learn that the store closed before the OLDCO cuts. I still think it's odd that the CJDR Brand Sign has been on display in front of an abandoned dealership for over seven years.
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Old 08-21-2015, 09:52 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by XDCX View Post
I thought that old Ford Brand Sign was cool too - I took a picture of it with my Droid Maxx - I'll find the photo and add it to this thread.
Here's the picture:


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I like the old Ford Brand Signs because they are so easy to spot.
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I bet if this old sign could talk it would have some stories to tell. I'm guessing a Ford Store on Route 66 was a very viable and valuable business back in the day - now it's nothing more than another abandoned building on a forgotten corridor.
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Old 08-21-2015, 10:06 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tnpartsguy View Post
if you click on the turn lane right in front of the dealership at Smith Street, it takes you to a photo dated 2007, when the dealership was still open!! I've never seen this before.....how cool!! Then there is a pulldown where you can see 2008 where the dealership is marked with a "We've Moved" sign, and then the present 2015 view.....try it!!
Here's a picture from Google Street View back in July, 2008 when the store was still open.

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I placed a red box around the portion of the screen that a person can click to review Google Street View history. Like you mentioned it's pretty cool.
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Old 08-21-2015, 12:41 PM   #10
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I did a look around our current store, there are pictures of it during early construction, PLUS, I looked at a picture taken in August '12 and there, On the access road behind Chili's is MY GMC Terrain...can't read the plate #, but the TN personalized Masonic tag is pretty easy to spot!!
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Old 08-25-2015, 10:14 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tnpartsguy View Post
I did a look around our current store, there are pictures of it during early construction, PLUS, I looked at a picture taken in August '12 and there, On the access road behind Chili's is MY GMC Terrain...can't read the plate #, but the TN personalized Masonic tag is pretty easy to spot!!
As I recall when Google first launched Street View as part of their Maps program they didn't "pixilate" any portion of the image. There was an uproar about privacy and Google developed a process that "pixilates" portions of the Street View image so license plates and house addresses cannot be read.
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Old 08-25-2015, 05:10 PM   #12
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I wonder if Mr. Corley got his start via Chrysler's MID program and if so I wonder what location he started at?
I did a little digging and it appears that Ford was the first OEM to offer Mr. Corley a store and it may very well be the location I photographed with the old Ford Brand Sign.

Here's an excerpt from a news report:
In those early days, the uranium mines fed Corley's grocery store, clothing store, gas stations, and restaurant with plenty of customers. But when the mines shut down in the early 1980s, Corley kept food on the table by pumping gas, washing windows, checking under hoods at his service station, and working at the local post office. "It was hard. And my wife always stood by me even though we struggled sometimes," recalls a teary-eyed Corley, now 74.

Then fate stepped in the day John Herbert, a minority dealer-manager for Ford, periled into Corley's station for gas and inquired about the abandoned Ford dealership lot across the street. Not knowing who he was talking to, Corley told him that it went out of business because it was mismanaged. "Why don't you take it and open it," Herbert suggested. Corley answered that he would, but he didn't have the money.

"So when he left, he gave me his card. It said, 'Dealer Placement Manager, Ford Motor Company,'" Corley recalls in mock shock. "We put together a deal, and I opened up the Ford dealership in 1982. I believe it was the good Lord that opened the door for me,"

The report indicated that Ford carried 80% of the $400,000 that was required to capitalize the store.

The report also mentioned a period when the dealer group was experiencing tough times in 1999 and brought in a consultant who ended up making the situation worse. The commentary about how the consultant caused controversy within the family would probably be interesting reading for anyone who has been part of a family business.

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