Friday, April 24, 2015

What was the Hupmobile?

Some football fans know that the original organizing meeting that started what would become the NFL was at Ralph Hay's Jordan Hupmobile Showroom.  But what was the Jordan and the Hupmobile?

On September 17, 1920, George Halas and a group of men met at Ralph Hay’s Jordon Hupmobile car showroom in Canton, Ohio.  Ralph Hay owned the Canton Bulldogs and he knew several other team owners.  While sitting on the bumpers and running boards of the Jordan and Hupmobile cars, they organized the league that we call the NFL today.  Chances are you have not heard of the Hupmobile and the Jordan car makers that long ago went out of business. 

Hupmobile was manufactured by the Hupp Motor Car Company, from 1908-1941. The company was started by Robert Hupp in Detroit.  His first car was a little two passenger Runabout.  The car company was fairly successful and many Hupmobiles followed and their offerings grew from two passenger vehicles, to three, and four.  A tour took a four passenger touring model around the world in 1910-1912.  In 1916, another Hupmobile, made a trip though all 48 states.  The company continued through much of the Depression and had a labor dispute that led to no new models being manufactured in 1937.  A promising new Skylark debuted in 1939, but the company ended it car manufacturing 1940.  The company continued to manufacture parts for the war effort in the 1940s and made parts for other companies as well.  It morphed into a manufacturer of parts for appliances, heating and cooling equipment and other industrial parts until it disappeared in the 1990s.

The Jordan had a shorter life than the Hupmobile and lasted from 1916-1931. The company was found by an advertising executive in Cleveland, Ned Jordan.  Jordan made his vehicles from parts assembled by other companies and his advertising was a driving force behind his company.  He offered cars in an attractive variety of colors with models like the Playboy and Tomboy.   His advertising was whimsical and took car buyers to beautiful locations in ads that ran in the Saturday Review Magazine.