Ransom Eli Olds, His grandchildren,
Edward Olds Roe,
Ransom Olds Anderson,
and J. Woodward Olds.
| R.E. Olds had a lot of respect for his employees. One of the things he did for them was to construct a Club House. The Club house housed a auditorium, complete with stage and motion pictures. The balcony had a pipe organ. Which still existed in 1976. The basement of the Club house had a bowling alley and a cafeteria. And at one time housed the WREO radio station. When I was just a young lad in the 1930's, on Fridays after school the REO company would show an aftenoon (matinee) movie for all the children in Lansing. On Saturday, the weekly movies were shown to the employees. Once a month the company put on a dinner with entertainment for the mens club. Consisting of salaried employees. On the second flour, there was a small bar. Which was open to the mens' club at no charge for drinks and snacks. But the Lobby always caught my attention.|
The front of the club house had a large porch with several doors including one into the lobby. When one entered the lobby one would immediately see a wonderful picture of a by gone era. Carefully placed for display was a early 1900 car, truck, and of all things a 1906 working quarter scale replica of a 1906 REO car. And now here is the story about about this miniature REO car.
REO displayed their cars at auto shows. My father used to transport the cars to these shows and set up the displays. He told of a time when the Auto Show was in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. REO had decided to hire a midget to drive the little car at the show. Every thing went fine for a while with the midget driving the car around for all to see. Unfortunately the midget started drinking and got drunk. My Dad said he raised havoc with everthing in sight. Colliding even with a brick wall. My Dad said it took a while to collar the little guy but not until he had inflicted damage to near by objects and the car itself. I am not sure if REO hired the midget for the next auto show or not. But perhaps to onlookers it might have been humorous. As to the where abouts of the little car. I am unaware of its location. The last owner of REO loaned it to a REO dealer and never got it back. But someone must have it. If you ever see it, imagine in your mind that midget wheeling that little car around when he was half shot down.
Some day I will have to tell you about the time that REO made cannons.
The scaled working model o f the car was a 1906.