Detroit Car & Mfg. Company
Robinson, Russell & Company
The Detroit Car & Manufacturing Company—not to be confused
with the Detroit Car Company—had
its beginnings at Detroit (of course) in 1853, when Dr. George B. Russell
undertook to build 25 cars for the Detroit & Pontiac Railway. He leased a
small shop on Gratiot Avenue and went to work. This was the first railway car
builder west of Albany, New York.
The next year, this informal operation was formalized as
Robinson, Russell & Company.
It operated under that name from 1854 to 24 December 1867, when it was incorporated as the
Detroit Car & Manufacturing Company.
The plant was moved from Gratiot Avenue to the foot of
Beaubien Street. Later a larger plant was constructed on Monroe Avenue near
the Detroit, Grand Haven & Milwaukee tracks.
According to one authority, Detroit Car specialized in
In 1870/71, George Pullman bought the plant, and it became the
Detroit works of the Pullman Company until it was abandoned in 1893. At that
time it covered an area bounded by Monroe, St. Aubin and Macomb Streets and
the Detroit & Milwaukee Railway tracks.
The first Pullman-built passenger cars came from this plant.