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The Checker Cab Manufacturing Corporation Collection

Identifier: RH-A-3645

Scope and Contents

The booklet is an advertisement for Checker Cab Manufacturing Company’s 6 and 8 passenger “Drive-Er-Matic” special sedans, appealing to a large family instead of cabs. The booklet describes the car in depth, from detailed pictures and illustrations of mechanical components to its reputation on the road. The “Drive-Er-Matic” is described as “Beauty and Comfort with Checker Economy” (pages 8-9). The reader can enjoy its colored illustrations and grayscale photographs of the interior, exterior, mechanical components, body, and accessories without having to take a test drive.


  • Creation: 1922


Biographical / Historical

Checker Motors Corporation was established by Morris Markin in 1922 through a merger of “Commonwealth Motors” and “Markin Automobile Body.” Checker Motors Corporation was a Kalamazoo, Michigan based vehicle manufacturer and subcontractor that manufactured taxicabs used by Checker Taxi and also marketed a few family sedans. The first shipment of a Checker from Kalamazoo was on June 18, 1923 stood out as a major landmark in the history of the company, which by then employed some 700 people.

In its peak production year of 1962, Checker rolled out some 8,173 cars; the great majority of those were taxis. the last Checker Cab rolled off the line in Kalamazoo on July 12, 1982. Checker saw its sales drop significantly in the late 2000s when sales at GM and other automakers plummeted along with a substantial rise in gas prices. In 2009, the company filed for bankruptcy.


1 Volumes

Language of Materials


Physical Description

The collection, comprised of .05 cubic feet, is 10.75” long by 8.25” wide. The booklet is printed on 16 colored and textured pages and is in excellent condition. It has been placed in an 11.75” x 9.5” acid-free legal sized folder.


The collection contains a booklet on Checker Automobiles titled Presenting Two All New Checker Automobiles for its 6 and 8 passenger “Drive-Er-Matic” special sedans made in Kalamazoo, Michigan.


The collection was purchased by funds from the Starring Endowment.

The Checker Cab Manufacturing Corporation Collection Finding Aid
Samantha Beland
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Repository Details

Part of the Western Michigan University Archives & Regional History Collections Repository

Charles C. and Lynn L. Zhang Legacy Collections Center
1650 Oakland Drive
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5307 US
(269) 387-8490