An Entertaining & Informative Vintage Automobile Internet Magazine

C. J. Murray Cadillac Showroom and Offices Sioux City, Iowa

Cyle J. Murray sold the Cadillac, the “Standard of the World” at his dealership located at 100 W. 7th St. in  Sioux City, Iowa. He  was born in Villisca, Iowa, in 1897, and in 1935 he established C. J. Murray Cadillac, which grew, and in time the became the Automaker’s distributor for its cars in thirty counties in the state. His enterprise also handled GMC trucks and Massey-Harris farm machinery.

This showroom setting on a terrazzo floor is much more impressive than that at the Deal and Davie Oldsmobile-GMC-Cadillac we visited recently, which had a 1952 Cadillac, a Coupe De Ville on its salesroom floor. Here at C. J. Murray Cadillac, we can see a pair of ’50 sedans and the parts room counter at the far end of the room.

Please share with us what you find of interest in this photo courtesy of the Sioux City Public Museum.

22 responses to “C. J. Murray Cadillac Showroom and Offices Sioux City, Iowa

  1. I believe both of those Cadillac’s are 1950 models…the larger bumper bullets came along in ’51. The one in the foreground would be a Series 62 Sedan (6-window roof on a 126” w/b) and the coupe in the background would be a Series 61 on the shorter 122” w/b, with no rocker panel trim and the (to my eye) awkward-looking 4-window sedan roof shared with all Buicks even down to the Special and the Olds Ninety-Eight.

    • Olds Ninety-Eight, Buick Super and Buick Roadmaster all incorporated a vent window in the rear door of that 4-window sedan body which distinguished them from, and elevated them a bit above, the Buick Special. Seems odd that Cadillac would style the Series 61 on a par with Buick’s lowest price line and below the Olds.

      • Joel, good point…it was odd that the Series 61 used the Buick Special rear door window design, but GM’s Olds, Buick and Cadillac did some odd “leap-frogging” of one another in that era.. like the Roadmaster 130 with its 130” w/b, larger than the Series 62’s and matched only by the 60 Special’s.
        The Series 61 allowed Cadillac to offer a low entry price, which seemed to work in 1950, but sales of it collapsed in ’51…and that was the end of the Series 61.

        • A high-end Buick provided a certain GM clientele with a luxury car without branding them as “rich” as a Cadillac might, those who wanted a cushy cruiser but didn’t want to turn off the hoi polloi who might see them driving around. I’m thinking of politicians, religious leaders and the like. I’m also thinking of late 50s Buick Limiteds and late 60s’ Buick 225s. Of course, some others kept to more modest transport. I’m thinking of Teddy Kennedy’s Oldsmobile 88 and my own local long-term mayor whose official city car was a Buick but who always personally drove a mid-level Chevrolet even though he was scion of a wealthy family.

  2. My grandfather was an executive at GM for 37 years. From 1919 to 1956 he was responsible for “Expediting ” delivery of Cadillac vehicles around the world. The photo really captures the position Cadillac once held in folks minds. It’s. Crying shame to see how badly the brand has been treated by GM management.

  3. Both are 1950 Cadillacs, the light colored sedan a Series 61 and the one closest a Series 62.
    1951 Cads had a mini egg rate ‘grille’ molding below the headlights between the grill extensions and 52’s had a panel gravel with gold winged crests celebrating the make’s 50th anniversary in the same location. Quick reference points for differences in the 50-52 front ends

      • I should also have noted the v and crest were gold and somewhat squatter in 52, and, as TEK has pointed out, the bumpers were different in 52 as well. Beautiful cars. I’m reminded how much of the wow factor is missing from the XTS I drive every time I see one of these. Yes, it’s safer and full of technology, but it’s a blah experience compared to the 56, 58, 59, 60, 70, 75, Cadillacs, and even the 94 Brougham, I’ve been fortunate to have had. Their sheer mass and style gave a totally different, and great, feeling every time I drove them. You didn’t just show up someplace, you arrived. A much classier distinction.
        The 79 Coupe deVille, and 89 Fleetwood (nice looking and riding car but lacked power) the 91 deVille, and 04 and 08 DTSs I’ve had were all good cars, but the big Caddies of old were the best. Anyway, sorry for the rant.

  4. Kinda looks like that building no longer exists. Across the street from a butcher shop at 99 W. 7th Street in Sioux City (where, given the usual odd/even street numbering, one would expect to find 100 W. 7th if it exists) is a parking lot for an apartment complex.

  5. That is a beautiful classic showroom,. The neon sign over the parts department Cadillac as ths Standard of the World says it all.

  6. The other day I saw a ’52 entry-level Chevy (reportedly an ex-CHP radio car)…it still had a split windshield.
    Good to see Cadillac had 1-piece units in ’50.

    • Cadillac used Fisher Body “C Bodies” as did the top models of Buick and Oldsmobile and all of which had one piece windshields in 1950.

      • The Series 61 was a B-Body in 1950-51. The C-Body was only used on the 62. This was a change from 1948 and 1949, when both cars were C-Body.

  7. IIRC the ’51 Caddys had bumper guards as an integral part of the front bumper.. so these are probably ’50s..

  8. All one had to do was look around as one entered the front door of this establishment to know that he/she was stepping into a “standard of the world” car buying environment. Very impressive and elegant showroom. The floor treatment, hanging lighting, floral arrangements, sculpted windows, juliet balconies and, of course, the cars. First impressions were just as important then as they are now.

    Can’t be sure if there were false fronts to a few of those windows but, one is open a crack on the second level and we can see something (daylight maybe) in the lower right corner of the window along the far wall. A fan/heating unit that I may see in a cabinet on the upper right for the cooling/heating convenience of its customers and sales people. It looks too small to be an air conditioning unit.

  9. I’m guessing that the flowers in the showroom, and taking the photographs indicate it’s Announcement Day, and the flowers were sent by the bank.

  10. The parts department represents a Cadillac Motor Car Division activity. When this photo was made all of the GM nameplate divisions ran their own parts departments. In 1969 they were all consolidated into what is now GM Parts Division.

  11. How many Cadillacs do you think he sold in Sioux City, Iowa? I’d have to think the tractor part did better. Speaking of which, I see no evidence of that at the Cadillac counter. Can’t have some farmer with soiled clothes in the same showroom as Mr. Drysdale.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *