From the May 1974 Issue of CMC’s Checker News a brief article about longtime Checker employee Jim Stout.  In two-weeks it will be the 99th anniversary of Jim’s start at Checker.  Let’s celebrate.

Checker People you Should Know

Over a half a Century of Checker Service

August 15. 1974 will be a big day in the life of James Stout.  It will also be sort of a milestone for Checker Motors, for on that say Mr. Stout will celebrate his 51st year with the company.

Stout came with the company in 1923 at the time Checker took over the Handley Knight automobile plant.   That plant was about a quarter of a mile long, and includes much of what is now the experimental department , where Stouts office is located.

He came to Checker from the Roamer automobile plant in Kalamazoo and is proud of the fact that Roamer produced one of the finest cars ever made in America.  Stout has two of them,  “cannibalizing” one of the Roamers to restore the second one.

“in those days, says Stout, “it took about two weeks for the Checker car body to go through our paint shop.  We applied anywhere from 12 and 15 coats of paint, and they had to be rubbed by hand.  Today, we send a body through the paint line in about a half-hour.”

Mr. Stout continues, “I came here at the same time that  L.F. Goodspeed, Roamer’s chief engineer, joined Checker.  I was supposed to work in the engineering and experimental department, and I guess I have worked in every department of this company that I can think of.  I worked in sales, spent time on the road.  Had charge of inspection during World War II.  Even supervised the assembly line at one time.  Final testing. Shipping.  Plant Layout.  You name it.  Practically every job in the place.  Of course, now I’m semi-retired.  I considered retiring several years ago when Checkers founder, Mr. Morris Markin was still alive.  When I broached the question, Mr. Markin replied, ‘as long as I have to keep working, Jim,  I don’t see any reason why you shouldn’t.’”

“After Mr. Marking died, his son, David sort of insisted I hang around a little longer.  Honestly, though,  I only come down to work about every other day,  something like that.  In the winter, I put in a little more time because my office is so warm and comfortable, and of course, after 51 year it is apparent that I like my work.”

“Checker Motors and I have been together a long time. Still today, it constantly surprises and stimulates me to see that our employment is heading towards the 1000 mark, and that our company is diversifying its production, and growing.”

Photo Caption for the Header Picture

From the May 1974 Issue of CMC’s Checker News a brief article about longtime Checker employee Jim Stout.  In two-weeks it will be the 99th anniversary of Jim’s start at Checker.  Let’s celebrate


Jim Stout and Julius Homoki at work in the Checker experimental department, Spring 1974. Jim Stout started at Checker in 1922 and worked there for over 50 years. He worked in every department at Checker during his tenure at Checker. Most notably, he was head of the Experimental Department. In essence. he worked on every type of Checker taxicab and bus ever produced.

Post Script

Here is another blog that was written about Jim Stout..  At the time written, it appeared the Stout had retired in 1965, as his name was removed from all internal CMC Engineering Change memorandas in that year.  Clearly based on this new blog, Jim stayed on well beyond 1965.  Based on other documents we have now seen, it appears the Mr. Stout may have worked in a semi retired basis well into the 1980’s.  Based on board member Steve Wilson’s writings, its very possible that Mr. Stout helped Checker restore the 1935 Checker Model Y now on display at the Gilmore museum.  Stout had made it clear in the article provided in the link below, that his favorite Checker was the Model Y.

The Jim Stout Checker Legacy – Internet Checker Taxicab Archive (