Tuesday, December 16, 2014

How many cars were sold in Lawrence County in 1914?


One of my researchers, J King, found the following interesting article in a magazine described as the first automobile journal titled “The Horseless Age” Vol 34, No 10 page 352  published Sept 2, 1914.
The Growth of a Lawrenceville Agent.

Through the recent incorporation of the Maxwell Motor Car Co., of Lawrenceville, Ill., under the laws of the State of Illinois, there came to light another interesting story of rapid development of an automobile retail business. Three and a half years ago A. L. Maxwell decided to enter the automobile business and established an agency at Lawrenceville. With an eye for the future Mr. Maxwell erected a building for his agency which was far in advance of the requirements of the community at that time, but owing to the wonderful growth that has marked his business during the last three years the establishment, which is considered one of the best in the State, is now too small and is being enlarged by the erection of a modern shop exclusively for automobile repair work.

During the first year the Maxwell Motor Car Co. sold 46 cars of all kinds, and the following season this mark was almost doubled, 87 cars being sold. The prosperity enjoyed by the automobile industry in 1913 was also shared by Mr. Maxwell, for during that season his sales totaled 205 cars. This was thought to be a high-water mark, but even greater success has been obtained this year, since up to August 24, his company sold and delivered 300 cars.

"With this growing business, I found it advisable to incorporate," says Mr. Maxwell, "and as we have always done business under the name of the Maxwell Motor Car Co., we have adopted that name and are issuing $150,000 of common stock and $50,000 preferred stock.

"We sell Hudson and Reo cars in a territory of twenty-two counties in Southern Illinois and Indiana. A branch house has been established in Vincennes, Ind., and we are just now opening one at Evansville, Ind. In the city of Lawrenceville, a place of 5000 to 10000 people, where our home office is located, there are said to be more automobiles than In any other town of like size anywhere in the country."

Ed Note from Researcher King:  Casper "Cap' Lewis and Noah Tohill bought Maxwell's stock offering.


To read more about automobiles during this period, this interesting magazine can be found at: 

 http://books.google.com/books?id=1GkfAQAAMAAJ&pg=PA350&dq=a+l+maxwell+of+lawrenceville+illinois&hl=en&sa=X&ei=nOCGVJSOGsyqgwSAvYPgDw&ved=0CEUQ6AEwBw#v=onepage&q=a%20l%20maxwell%20of%20lawrenceville%20illinois&f=false

For pictures of Hudson cars that Maxwell probably sold see:
http://hetclub.org/burr/photos/1909-19hudsonfamily_album.pdf