Ford Motor Company Indianapolis Plant Celebrates Grand Opening

1915 Ford Motor Company Indianapolis Branch Assembly Plant
1915 Ford Motor Company Indianapolis Branch Assembly Plant

The Ford Motor Company Indianapolis Branch Assembly Plant, 1315 East Washington Street, celebrated its grand opening on March 9, 1915. A two-mile-long automobile parade along East Washington St; provided over 5,000 people for a plant inspection during automobile show week. The parade was more than 45-minutes passing any given point. A. H. Smith, plant manager, and S. H. Jones, assistant plant manager, addressed the gathering. Details were arranged by the Chamber of Commerce with assistance of the Merchants Association. The Ford Motor Company allotted 250 cars from the plant for the use of its guests in addition to over 200 other individuals’ cars. At the time of the opening, the plant had about 250 employees and assembled 60 cars a day. The four-story Indianapolis branch was valued at $410,000.

276 cars for deivery
276 cars for deivery

This April 1915 photo near the plant shows 276 autos awaiting delivery to the Ford Indiana Zone dealers. Through the chain of 24 assembly plants, the Ford Motor Company was enabled to make almost immediate delivery of Ford cars to any section of the country. During the late fall and winter months, assembled parts were shipped to the assembly plants and stored there so that when spring came with its added demand, Ford cars were assembled and distributed to waiting buyers. In most cases, delivering agents drove the cars home.

Assembly branches also avoided the hazard of damaging cars in loading and unloading from freight cars as well as in-transit damage over considerable distances. Branches served only their contiguous territory. Ford Motor Company assembled vehicles at the Indianapolis plant through 1932.

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