History of the people of Beaverton, Oregon – Otto Erickson and Guy Carr: Car Dealerships

January 24, 2010 in Beaverton History by mmeinz

In 1915, Otto Erickson opened Beaverton Garage, the first automobile garage in town, with a capital investment of $3,500. Later that year he became Beaverton’s Ford Agent. In 1917 he added Hillsboro to his territory and by 1918, he was the Ford agent for Washington County. By 1920, that $3,500 investment had grown to over $96,000. Otto was president of the company and owned 80 percent of the stock. The other 20 percent was shared by his employees as a reward for faithful service.

Guy Carr arrived in Beaverton, in 1919, just after World War I. His step-father, Otto Erickson, was mayor at the time, in addition to owning the Ford dealership. Carr went to work for Erickson, demonstrating the Fordson Tractor (“A tractor was new, unheard of,” remembered Carr) and later assembling the Fords that were shipped in parts to the Beaverton Garage where he worked. In 1923, Carr bought out his step-father’s Ford dealership at the Farmington location, and sold Fords until the building burned in 1930. Twenty years and several dealerships later in locations around Beaverton, Carr moved to the present-day location on Southwest Canyon Road. In 1987, Guy Carr retired after 68 years in the automobile business in Beaverton.

Guy Carr served on the Beaverton City Council for several years. When the city went broke during the Depression, Bull Run water was cut off because the city couldn’t pay the $75,000 water bill. Carr and the other councilmen signed a $2,500 note, and proceeded to drill their own well with the help of friends.