The Studebaker Garage
(509) 595-5255

P.O. Box 611

Harrington, Washington 99134

     The Studebaker Garage was built in 1916 to be leased out as a Ford dealership.  I purchased it knowing that the richness in time and experience would create the ultimate atmosphere for a vintage car garage. I have been transforming it back into an auto dealership, so to speak; more of an eclectic bunch of car related stuff.  I tend to favor the orphan cars and I am very partial to the Studebaker, thus The Studebaker Garage.

     The Studebaker Garage and Showroom is located in a historic building in downtown Harrington, Washington.  Aside from our annual Harrington Car Show, we host Saturday Sessions, Group Tours, Weddings, and more.  Please see our contact page for more information.


Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Studebaker Shop in Harrington

The Studebaker Shop in Harrington Wa

By Nicolette Reames


          Transportation is the key to survival for small towns, and Harrington is no different, depending on first horses, then trains, then automobiles to bring in visitors and residents. The many businesses that once stood on 9 North Third Street tell the history of the changing face of the automobile business in Harrington. The Studebaker shop is the most current business occupying this piece of property in a long line of automobile businesses in Harrington.  It started out as a livery stable, most likely that of the O.K. Livery Stables owned by the McInnis brothers.  When the livery burned down in 1916, a new building was built on the land, and the first business to occupy it was the Harrington Garage. 

            By the 1940’s it had changed to the Harrington Ford Motor Co, with W.B. Hose acting as mechanic.  The business continued to change and by the 1960’s it had transitioned into the Harrington Motor Co. & Ford Sales with Howard Hose as mechanic. By the 1980’s the building had become the Grange Automotive Service, also known as the Grange Auto Service Garage.  When that went out of business, the building sat empty for a while before A.J. Barth bought and renovated it in 2011 for his Studebaker shop.  Barth now fixes up run down Studebakers and services old fords, giving a nod to the history of the building.

            The popular shift from horses to motor cars also affected other businesses in Harrington. Stone pillars were built on either side of the north-central highway in 1930 on the approach to Harrington to welcome visitors. In the 1960’s the first drive-in restaurant, the Buy-n-Bye, was built on the north end of Harrington, along with a Chevron Station nearby. In August of 1970 Harrington received its first blinking red stop light, installed at the corner of Main and Third Street, where highways 28 and 23 intersected, in the hopes that it would be more noticeable than the stop sign that had been there previously.

            As the shift to motor cars had an effect on Harrington, so did the highway changes.  Designated in 1913, State Route 28 was one of the first cross state highways in Washington. Also known as the Sunset Highway, it runs right through Harrington and brought with it much needed visitors to the small town.  In 1923 it became State Route 7 and was already competing with Route 2 through Davenport as a major roadway for the small towns that littered it landscape.  The businesses in Harrington reflected the change, and by the 1950s and 1960s, Interstate 90 was created and redirecting traffic around Harrington, taking it off the beaten path.



Sources for this stop: Harrington 100 Years; Historic Revival in Harrington, The Spokesman Review, Oct 6 2011; Harrington in the Heart; Washington State Department of Transportation.

Posted by Nicolette Reames at 5:47 PM


Harrington news

Free ice-cream social enjoyed

August 1, 2013 | 113th Year, Number 16

On Saturday afternoon, the Harrington community was offered a free ice-cream social from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., hosted by Allen Barth at his Studebaker Garage, which he purchased in 2011. Six gallons of ice cream were served by Karen and Jerry Allen, owners of the Hotel Harrington.

Paul Gilliland, mayor of Harrington, was seen at this social enjoying the cool and refreshing treat. An estimated 50 or more people turned out and sat in the shade in the building that housed the Harrington Garage from 1916 to 1923 when owned by Charlton & Charlton and in 1930 when owned by Bill Hose. The building now contains 26 automobiles in varying stages of restoration, many totally restored and licensed. Allen Barth estimated that he has 130 automobiles on his home place, in addition to those in Harrington. Studebakers have been Barth’s lifetime hobby, and he has been restoring them full-time for the past 12 years.

According to Barth, the Studebaker company began in the 1800s, making wheelbarrows, with the first automobile produced in 1902. Of the Studebakers owned by Barth, his earliest one is a 1915 roadster. Studebakers ceased production in 1966. When the crowds thinned, Barth took several vehicles with passengers from the social on rides about the town. One of these vehicles was a tan 1932 Commander Studebaker of which there are currently only known to be three in existence. He estimated that there are about 150 of the model years 1950-51 convertibles in existence today, and he lays claim to five of them. Another wonderfully restored automobile was the Yellow with Green 1955 Studebaker President. One of his automobiles had absolutely unique tires. The pattern of the tread could be read: “Non Skid” repeated over and over to complete the tire.

His office in the front of the building contains memorabilia, including museum pieces and collectors’ items among which were reading glasses, wind-up toys and cars, marbles, automotive books and magazines, repair manuals, a glass milk bottle filled with feathers, a Carnation Steel Cut Coffee Can, Sloan’s Liniment, a 10-gallon crock, and framed colorful automobile ads.

This was the second event this year at the Studebaker Garage. On April 27, 2013 a crowd of 300 attended Barth’s car show, while about 230 meals were served at his barbecue. Townspeople are anxious to hear what his next event will be.

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The Spokesman-Review


Historic revival in Harrington

Harrington, the little Lincoln County wheat town less than an hour west of Spokane, is having a historic revival of sorts. Several preservation projects are underway, including an effort to restore an original Ford dealership and turn it into a vintage car shop and sales lot.

Dan Pelle - The Spokesman-Review