Hershey, PA (November 15, 2018) The Mid-Atlantic Region of the Dodge Brothers Club is guest curating a display of four historic Dodge Brothers vehicles at the AACA Museum, Inc. at Hershey in the Williams-Clyne Gallery. The display will open to the public on November 17th and will be on view through April 28, 2019.
Brothers Horace Elgin Dodge and John Francis Dodge founded Dodge Brothers in the early 1900s, originally as a parts supplier for other Detroit automakers. Dodge Brothers then manufactured vehicles of their own from 1914–1938. This display showcases the diversity of the various body types that were available during these years. Styles on view include early vehicles, commercial vehicles, and vehicles that would appeal to the foreign market such as Australia which was an essential component of their business. Specific vehicles on view are a 1915 Dodge Brothers Touring, 1926 Dodge Brothers Station Wagon, 1926 Dodge Brothers Panel Van and a 1935 Dodge Brothers Phaeton. Our thanks to guest curator Doug Walters, President of the Mid-Atlantic Region of the Dodge Brothers Club for assembling this collection of vehicles along with a display cabinet with related memorabilia.
When did “Dodge Brothers” become “Dodge”? Officially, Chrysler changed the name from “Dodge Brothers” to “Dodge” in 1930. In actuality, “Dodge Brothers” still appeared for several more years, slowly fading from use and memory during the 1930s. By 1938 “Brothers” was pretty well gone from all mention, including most company stationery and was also chosen by the founders of the Dodge Brothers Club to be the cut-off point as the end of the Dodge Brothers era. When did “Dodge” become a part of “Chrysler”? Walter P. Chrysler bought Dodge Brothers at 5:00 PM on July 31, 1928. It was purchased from Clarence Dillion of Dillon Read & Company, the investment bankers. A copy of the actual check from when Dillon Read bought the company from the Dodge Family for $146,000,000 in 1925 is on view as part of this display. It was the largest cash transaction ever at that time. (Ref: Chrysler, The Life and Times of an Automotive Genius, p. 385-388)
The Williams-Clyne Gallery in the AACA Museum, Inc. is a place where the many marque-specific clubs and other automotive organizations can display vehicles that have outstanding educational resources and no place to exhibit them. This space is dedicated to serving that audience and allows us to build relationships between the Museum and the greater automotive community it serves. The AACA Museum, Inc. invites inquiries from automotive clubs and organizations who are interested in providing a curated display for a future exhibit.
While visiting the AACA Museum, Inc. this winter, guests can also enjoy our featured exhibit “Land Yachts: Postwar American Luxury Convertibles.” This exhibition showcases the beauty and the glamour of the full-size American convertibles built from the immediate post-WWII years through 1976 when Cadillac produced what was then believed to be the last American convertible and will be on view through April 28, 2019.