Tag Archive | oldest dodge dealer Rockville

Meet Phillip Reed

First Shop Force 1916

1916 – First Shop Force: Lewis Reed, (first name unknown) Long and Phillip Reed

Reed Brothers Dodge started Sales and Service operations in 1915 with a handful of key employees. Phillip Reed was a brother of Lewis Reed and a part of the dealership’s first work force. Phillip came to work for the dealership in 1916 as a mechanic until 1944. He was an original incorporator and charter member of the Rockville Volunteer Fire Department when the fire company was organized on March 9, 1921.

Phillip Reed

Phillip Reed

Reed Brothers Becomes an Original Member of Chrysler

1930s Chrysler radiator "ribbon" emblem

1930s Chrysler radiator “ribbon” emblem

May 28, 1928 marks an important milestone in the history of Chrysler.  It was on this day in 1928 that Dodge Brothers, Horace and John Dodge, became a part of Chrysler. It was on this same date that Lewis Reed, founder of Reed Brothers Dodge in Rockville, Maryland also became an original member of the Chrysler family.

During 1920, the Dodge Brothers company lost its founding fathers. John Dodge died in January, and his younger brother Horace succumbed the following December. A New York investment banking firm paid the brothers’ widows, in a single cash payment, $146 million for the Dodge Brothers firm. Within three years, the bankers initiated negotiations, and on May 28, 1928, Walter P. Chrysler purchased Dodge Brothers, Inc. for $170 million, making it, at the time, the largest business transaction in history. When the transaction was complete, the Chrysler Corporation had grown five-fold overnight to become the third of Detroit’s “Big Three” automakers.

The first Plymouth was built in 1928 and Plymouths were sold at Reed Brothers until 1969, when the Plymouth brand was given to the Chrysler dealers.

Reed Brothers Dodge a Designated “Peerless Place”

Along with St. Mary’s Church (1813), King Farm (1925), Red Brick Courthouse (1891), and the B&O Railroad Station (1873), Reed Brothers Dodge (1915) has been designated as a “Peerless Place” by Rockville’s Historic Preservation organization.

Today, the former location of Reed Brothers Dodge is occupied by the Bainbridge Shady Grove Metro Apartments, and they, like Peerless, remain committed to preserving a part of the city’s automotive heritage by paying homage to a century of history at the new residential complex.

Bainbridge Shady Grove Metro

Bainbridge Shady Grove Metro Apartments now stands on the former site of the Reed Brothers Dodge dealership at 15955 Frederick Road. But a sculpture now installed on the property pays tribute to the oldest Dodge dealership in Maryland history. More than 20 feet high, and over 6 feet wide, the public art is inspired by 1939 Dodge headlamps, and the fender of a 1957 Dodge pickup truck.

Peerless Rockville Historic Preservation, Ltd. is an award-winning nonprofit, community-based organization founded in 1974 to preserve buildings, objects, and information important to Rockville’s heritage.  Peerless Rockville advances its goals through education, example, advocacy, and community involvement.

Peerless Places have become Rockville’s special places.  They provide us all with a flavor and scale that is at once historic, personal, comforting, and viable.

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