Checker Cab Manufacturing Corporation
Checker Cab Manufacturing Corporation
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Checker Cab Manufacturing Corporation
June 23, 1941
Quayle & Son
12 1/8" (w) by 8" (h)
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Morris Markin (a clothier from Chicago, Illinois) became the owner of Markin Automobile Body, an auto-body manufacturer based in Joliet, Illinois, following a default by the owner on a $15,000 personal loan. The facility made bodies for Commonwealth Motors, which marketed the vehicles to cab companies under the trade name Mogul.
Commonwealth Motors was on the verge of bankruptcy, but had an order from Checker Taxi (a privately owned cab company in Chicago that had no affiliation with Markin at the time). Markin merged Commonwealth Motors with Markin Automobile Body to honor the contractual commitment. In 1930 Checkers came in either black, maroon, yellow or canary.
Markin would slowly acquire Checker Taxi of Chicago over the course of the 1920s. In 1929, he purchased the Yellow Cab Company from John D. Hertz.
The company entered the consumer passenger car business in 1947 on a limited basis. By late fifties, CMC would further expand in consumer automobile market. Sales were phased in regionally across the US in 1959, starting in New York and New England. Nationally, introduction of the Checker Superba took place at the Chicago Auto Show on February 8, 1960.
The dealer network continued to grow throughout the early 1960s, and throughout the decade Checker usually managed its target volume of 6000-7000 cars a year. In 1962 production topped 8,000, although most of those were taxis. Four-door sedans and station wagons (Superba and Marathon models) also were advertised to individual customers in upscale publications. The ads emphasized the durability of the Checker and the attention to quality improvements. In 1962 almost 3,000 cars were sold to individuals - 20% of production - but that percentage declined to 10% in the 1970s.
In addition to automobile production, Checker played a significant role as a third-party automotive supplier of OEM body stampings. In the late 1930s Checker produced truck bodies for Hudson in addition to manufacturing complete Ford truck cabs. Checker also produced truck bodies for the REO Motor Car Company.
During World War II Checker was one of many producers of the G518 Ben Hur trailer for the U.S. Army.
In 1964 the state of New York pursued Marking and Checker on antitrust charges, alleging that it controlled both the taxi service and manufacture of taxis, and thus favored itself in fulfilling orders. Rather than allow Checker drivers to begin buying different brands of cars, Markin began selling licenses in New York City.
The next year the company switched from the standard Continental engine, offering either Chevrolet 230 cu in (3.8 l) overhead-valve I6s or 283 cu in (4.64 l) small block V8s.
In March 1977, seven years after the death of Morris Markin, retired GM President Ed Cole and car dealer Victor Potamkin bought into Checker with the intent of re-energizing the company and developing a new, more modern Checker. With Cole as chairman and CEO of the company, the plan was to purchase partially completed Volkswagens from VW's new Westmoreland Assembly Plant in Pennsylvania. They were going to ship the Volkswagens to the Checker Motors factory in Kalamazoo, Michigan, cut them in half, insert a section to lengthen the car, raise the roof and then sell the reconfigured vehicles as taxis. Less than 90 days after joining Checker, Cole died when his plane crashed near Kalamazoo in May 1977. In August of 1977, the Checker-VW project was introduced in Road & Track magazine. The project was scrapped shortly after when it was determined that the Volkswagen was not suitable for taxi service.
In July 1982 the last Checker automobile left the Kalamazoo assembly plant. It was an A11 Taxi, painted in Chicago green and ivory livery. Checker was now out of the automobile manufacturing business. In 1989 Checker Motors and Checker Holding Company were involved in a reverse acquisition with International Controls Corporation (Great Dane Trailers), and the company later changed its name to CRA Holdings. The company was reorganized in 1995 into three wholly owned subsidiaries: Yellow Cab (owns and leases taxicabs in Chicago), Chicago Auto Works (taxicab repair and other services) and CMC Kalamazoo.
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All of our pieces are original - we do not sell reproductions. If you ever find out that one of our pieces is not authentic, you may return it for a full refund of the purchase price and any associated shipping charges.
Are the certificates offered on your site genuine or reproductions?All of the certificates you see on our site are genuine pieces, we do not sell any reproductions.
Are the certificates you sell negotiable on any of today's stock markets or indexes?
No. All of the pieces we sell are either canceled or obsolete and have collectible value only.
Are the images presented in your product listings of the exact piece I will receive?
It depends. We try to present images of the exact piece you will receive whenever possible. However, when we are offering quantities of a piece, this is impossible. Within every product page we detail whether or not you will be receiving the exact certificate listed, or if the image is a representative example of the one you will receive.
How will you ship my order and how much do you charge?
We ship all orders via the United States Postal Service. Most domestic orders are shipped via Ground Advantage. USPS International, Priority and Express Mail, UPS and DHL services are also available, and costs are calculated during checkout. Current charges may be reviewed here.
Can I return my purchase?
Absolutely. You may return any merchandise, for any reason, within 30 days of the purchase date for a full refund of the purchase price.
We guarantee all of our pieces to be authentic. If you ever determine that a piece is not authentic, it may be returned for a full refund of the purchase price as well as any associated shipping charges.
If your order exceeds $35, and the shipping address is within the United States, shipping via USPS Ground Advantage is FREE!
We make every effort to ship out all orders within 24 hours of receipt.
We ship the majority of orders via the USPS, with domestic orders using the Ground Advantage service.
Shipping is calculated during checkout. Upgraded services such as Priority and Express Mail, as well as UPS and DHL options, are also available.
As soon as your order is shipped you will receive your tracking information via email.
OVERSEAS ORDERS PLEASE NOTE THAT WE DECLARE FULL ORDER VALUE ON ALL SHIPMENTS. CUSTOMER IS RESPONSIBLE FOR ALL VAT/CUSTOMS CHARGES.
Our goal is to make sure every item you receive is exactly what you had in mind. If you not happy with your purchase, we’ll help you get it sorted in a timely and professional manner.
You can return anything we offer for an exchange, refund or store credit within 30 days of delivery. Return shipping costs may apply, and the item must be in its original condition and packaging.
Any shipping charges collected on the original order are not eligible for a refund.