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Flint Michigan 1956: New Chevrolet Car and Truck Storage Lot

The 1956 Chevrolet was assembled in Flint, Michigan by the automaker at one of the many General Motors plants located there in the City. Today’s photograph contains new Chevrolet cars and trucks in a storage lot located at the intersection Camden and Ossington Avenues in Flint. It appears the vehicles were stored here after assembly at a nearby Chevrolet Plant before being loaded onto automobile shipper’s trucks. A worker is visible at the far-right of the center of the photo in a Chevrolet panel truck parked behind a four-door Chevy hardtop with the trunk lid open.

Across from Camden Avenue, which is visible from left-to-right at the top of the image is the Standard Cotton Products Co. Plant that can be seen just to the left of center of the photo. “Wards Automotive Yearbook Vol. 18” published in 1956 describes Standard Cotton, as a supplier to GM that a manufactured “cotton batting, and automotive body trimming materials” used in the interior of automobiles and trucks. The Plant, like many in Flint has been demolished, but its footprint and lot can be seen in what is now a residential area.

The Company workers in this Standard Plant on the afternoon December 30, 1936, went on strike following the workers at Fisher II Body Plant who began the well known UAW Sit-Down Strikes that morning at 6:45; in the evening, workers at the Fisher I Body Plant also in Flint followed and took over that facility.

Tell us what you find of interest in the expandable photo below found via at the TriFive Forums.

23 responses to “Flint Michigan 1956: New Chevrolet Car and Truck Storage Lot

    • Also interesting that car mfrs. during this period shipped their cars with the wheel covers on, rather than in the trunk. When I prepped new cars for delivery in the `70s, antennas, wheel covers, floor mats, etc. were all bagged in the trunk.

  1. Hi David!

    Great photo!

    Here’s what I see:

    1) Almost every car is two-tone

    2) Almost every car has whitewall tires

    3) Most cars have full wheel covers, few dog-dish hubcaps.

    4) All cars have the wheel coverings installed, which I think would have been unlikely, except for a publicity photo.

    Again, thanks for all you do.

    • Hi Mike, the cars with the wheel covers looked a bit odd to me, as well. Almost as if, this was the employee parking lot, if it wasn’t for the ragtops. Most images I found of car carriers in the 50’s and early 60’s, the cars did not have wheel covers,( for obvious reasons,,,that truck driver got to stop to eat sometime) and was usually a dealer prep item.

  2. Whoa, thas a lotta’ my favorite Tri-5 Chevy. I think the panel truck is a ’55, judging by the hood ornament. I’m sure that person had a specific job to do before delivery.

    • I agree, Howard – the ’56 is my favourite Tri-5 as well. In college I had two Bel Airs – a black and white four-door six, and later a two door yellow and bronze hardtop. I remember in college days in rthe mid Sixties a friend of mine telling me that “…the ’57 will be the future collector’s car of the three.”

  3. Thanks for confirming a memory for me…I remember seeing this lot of cars but couldn’t quite remember where…wish I had just one of these beauties today

  4. That black (?) 4-door hardtop without any two-tone looks really good.

    I also had no idea that convertibles were shipped with covers over their tops, though it makes sense.

    I’ll take that Nomad I see in the background.

    Excellent photo find.

      • I remember seeing a striking triple black convertible when the ’56s were new. it was on a May trip to the Capitol… It was beautiful, spotless, brilliant whitewalls,, windows/ top up (aircontioned?) sparkling chrome… the driver, grey suited w/ a matching Dobbs(?) felt heading down Constitution, not too much traffic … a Kodak moment. Wondered who he mite’ve been.

  5. Hey, I see our car waiting to be delivered. 4-door, blackwalls, no rocket imagery on the side. A basic family car, a definite upgrade from our 48. This was passed down through the family and I sold it (after a baby blue paint job) at over 130,000 miles to a budding aircraft mechanic who sectioned it to remove the back door area, and ended up orphaning it during a joy ride in a local cemetery!

  6. My family had a dealership in the Thumb area during this time. The cars ordered were shipped to dealers and the cars were done before with various extra add on’s.

  7. I believe this is also where they loaded the cars on rail cars. The main Chevrolet Assembly Plant was only 1 1/2 miles away. Kettering University is sitting on it now. I believe the Fisher Plants were right across the river. I think there was an engine plant between the two at one time. This was ground zero if the Russian launched a nuclear attack on the U.S.

  8. Many years ago when I was hanging out at the local Chevy
    dealer all the new cars came in with no hub caps installed.
    No full wheel covers til the ’53 Bel Air came along. The
    convertibles always had a heavy covering over their tops
    (different kind of top material in those days). Have no idea
    whether they still do this or not. Also antennas as well
    as radios were dealer installed. Can’t remember if the dealer
    installed heaters/defrosters. Certainly different from the
    way things are these days. Thanks for another great photo
    series, keep up the good work.

  9. Times must have been prosperous. Lots of Bel Airs and 210’s. I see only one 150.
    The guy in the panel truck appears to be checking out the trunk on the BelAir next to him.

  10. I’m amazed that there seems to be no organisation… acres and acres of “randomness”… talk about a search and seek if JON were at the far end of that parking field how long would it take him to find that 2dr 210 w/twin 4s ‘n 3 on the tree… my mind is “boggled”

  11. I have this photo and had a friend (photographer) remove the swish following the 210 in the fore ground.
    Love this photo as I have a 150 that I converted to a 210. I ask younger folks if they had to put gas in this car where would they do it? Once I show them they are very surprised.

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