Groundbreaking ceremonies were held for the new Jordan Motor Car Company plant east of downtown Cleveland at 1070 East 152nd Street along the Nickel Plate Railroad tracks

Wednesday 5th April 1916

Groundbreaking ceremonies were held for the new Jordan Motor Car Company plant east of downtown Cleveland at 1070 East 152nd Street along the Nickel Plate Railroad tracks. This not only provided an ideal location for shipping the finished cars, but also provided Jordan with ready access to out of area suppliers. The plant was built in two stages; the first 30,000-square-foot (2,800 m2) building was finished in just seven weeks, while the second addition was completed within months of the first structure. In their first year of production (1916), Jordan sold over one thousand vehicles. Jordan parts were obtained from outside vendors. The cars were powered by Continental engines, used Timken axles, Bijur starters, and Bosch ignitions. While most automobile producers limited themselves to a single color combination, and Ford relied exclusively on the fast-drying Japan Black lacquer which cured in a matter of hours, Jordan automobiles were available in no less than three colors of red – “Apache Red”, “Mercedes Red”, and “Savage Red”- as well as “Ocean Sand Gray”, “Venetian Green”, “Briarcliff Green”, “Egyptian Bronze”, “Liberty Blue”, and “Chinese Blue”. Black was also available. The most flamboyant of color schemes was on the four-passenger Sport model which could be ordered in “Submarine Gray”, with khaki top and orange wheels. Details given the cars were unusually advanced for an independently made assembled car. For example, Jordans boasted one of the first cowl fresh air ventilation systems. Jordan also went to all-steel construction in the mid-1920s, some ten years before Buick, and eight years before Chrysler introduced the advanced Airflow models. Jordan was also one of the first automakers to christen its model types with unique, evocative names such as the Sport Marine (with “fashionably low” 32×4-inch wheels, it was “essentially a woman’s car”), Tomboy, and Playboy. In 1920, the company issued the Friendly Three coupe, with the slogan “Seats two, three if they’re friendly”. Jordan was known for refined marketing with one of the most famous ads ever appearing in the June, 1923 edition of the Saturday Evening Post promoting the Jordan Playboy with artwork by Fred Cole of the car driven by a cloche hat wearing flapper hunkered down behind the wheel in abstract fashion, racing a cowboy and the clouds. The text read: “SOMEWHERE west of Laramie there’s a bronco-busting, steer roping girl who knows what I’m talking about. She can tell what a sassy pony, that’s a cross between greased lighting and the place where it hits, can do with eleven hundred pounds of steel and action when he’s going high, wide and handsome. The truth is – the Playboy was built for her. Built for the lass whose, face is brown with the sun when the day is done of revel and romp and race. She loves the cross of the wild and the tame. There’s a savour of links about that car – of laughter and lilt and light – a hint of old loves – and saddle and quirt. It’s a brawny thing – yet a graceful thing for the sweep o’ the Avenue. Step into the Playboy when the hour grows dull with things gone dead and stale. Then start for the land of real living with the spirit of the lass who rides, lean and rangy, into the red horizon of a Wyoming twilight.”

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