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Jack Bryant LTD Foreign Cars: Wisconsin Ave. Georgetown, Washington DC

This image of Jack Bryant’s Foreign Car sales lot appears to the casual viewer to have been taken in the early-to-mid-1960s, although that is not the case here as it was actually shot in the early-to-mid-1970s. We cropped both sides of the photo and photoshopped a couple of more modern cars out of the scene to give it an earlier old school appearance.

Jack Bryant’s business evidently was well established and had a following at the intersection of Wisconsin Avenue and Q Street in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington, DC. Georgetown is located on the northern bank of the Potomac River and is known for the politicians and lobbiests who live there, its rows of historic townhouses, cobblestone streets, fine dining, entertainment and Georgetown University, one of the leading private research universities in the world.

Bryant seemingly knew all about the upscale citizens and students there who were attracted to imported sports cars in general and other foreign machines. He wisely supplied them with their needs for distinctive and higher-end foreign vintage machines in the 1970s, displayed in an attractive and attention-getting manner.

Tell us what you find of interest in this photograph and view the original via The Enigmatic Traveler’s Flicker page.

20 responses to “Jack Bryant LTD Foreign Cars: Wisconsin Ave. Georgetown, Washington DC

  1. The Spitfire ( Red, between the Jag and Mercedes) appears to be a Mk3 by the side marker lights. That would put it between 69~71 YOM. Great, and under rated, little cars.

    • It’s an XK120 Jaguar. It’s determined by the skinny front bumpers. I’ve owned one for 48 years and am the 2nd owner and still love it.

  2. Fairly rare Mercedes-Benz 220S or 220SE Coupe on the left. That shack in the back must have been standard equipment for thousands of little used car lots such as this.

    • From ’71 to ’74, I was assigned to HMX-1 at Quantico and lived in Alexandria. (I know, technically out of bounds.) Anyway, I bought a ’68 Spitfire from a dealer like this while there. I can’t remember for sure, but it might have been this one.

  3. Curved glass windshield, relief in front bumper for hood clearance, the grill goes up with it, make it an XK 150. I know, my XK 140 came with that bumper and I’m still looking

  4. Is there anyone besides myself that thinks there are two people
    along the curb? The lady is trying to ride her bike and I think there
    is a guy behind her and yes it does look like the cat is on a leash.
    Maybe today is the day I’ve finally lost it.

  5. All those English cars equipped with Lucas, Prince of Darkness electrics. Try playing with that stuff on a cold winter’s night!

    • So one would think, except there is this….
      It is winter, around 1970, and on the Saturday morning the week before Christmas, it is necessary that a large parcel of gifts for the wife’s relatives in Vermont be delivered to the Post Office. This Must Be Done. Unfortunately it is about 10 below zero and the Pontiac Tempest just groans. Like wise “Lurch” the ’58 Chevy Apache tow car. “I think we may be out of luck” sez I.
      “We’ll take the Sprite” sez her.
      “Your Bugeye is NOT going to start.”
      “Sure it will” she says, “Here, hold the package”
      And of course the damn thing lights right up, doubtless owing to the fact the engine is only slightly larger than the battery and the general looseness of the rings and bearings.
      “Well, get in, let’s go.”
      Hmmm, looks like I am doomed to be the passenger and I open the door. Now the thing to remember about British roadsters is that the convertible top is only meant to keep out a portion of the elements and thus the foam in the seats always retains a certain amount of moisture. In sub-zero weather this means the seats are hard as a rock until the heat of your butt softens them up. So there I am, the package (which is too large to fit in the so-called “boot” behind the seats) is wedged between the dash and my chest and under my chin. Owing to the frozen seat, the top of my head is right up against one of the top bows. “Let’s try not to hit too many bumps.”

  6. I don’t think I’d give that much credit for appearance. Lot appears overgrown with weeds and a general run down look. That said the cars are pretty interesting. Reliability on most of those British sports cars was pretty poor to say the least. Trying to drive one on a regular basis would have been a challenge to say the least!

  7. When i visited the lot back in the1950s it was under another owner. I think thelot was Mac’s or some other Scotish derivative. I occasionally babysat the office for the owner. One car he had at the time was Horsch limo from the 30s. He was an interesting guy. Another car was aJag sedan he claimed had been given to the original owner by Elisabeth Taylor when she was married to Sen John Warner.

  8. I remember this lot well. It was located on Wisconsin Ave in Georgetown on a hill in the early 50’s. There never appeared to be anyone around.

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