Firestone Complete Auto Care, a fixture along Route 66 in downtown Albuquerque since at least the early 1930s, closed and its classic neon sign was hauled away about a month ago.
The auto-repair shop was at Seventh Street and Central Avenue (aka Route 66).
Downtown Albuquerque News (subscription required) reported:
In response to questions, Firestone parent company Bridgestone issued a statement saying the closure decision was due to “store performance” and made after a “thorough evaluation.” Other Firestone locations in Albuquerque remain open.
The original opening date of the store isn’t clear either. A photo from the Albuquerque Museum archive (see above) shows it open for business in 1931, but some social media commenters this week put the opening date at 1933. One guide to Route 66 landmarks lists it as 1929.
A reporter for the news outlet said the whereabouts of the neon sign remain unknown.
The shop also let Drifters Car Club of New Mexico stage its Sunday night cruises and parade there.
According to the book “New Mexico: A Celebration of the Land of Enchantment,” the shop during the mid-1930s offered layaway for Christmas shoppers and female attendants.
(Google Street View excerpted image of Firestone Complete Auto Care in downtown Albuquerque; a vintage image of the downtown Albuquerque Firestone by Albuquerque Museum via 66Postcards.com)