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Among the most desirable American automobiles of the 1920s was the Packard, built in the heart of Detroit by the Packard Motor Car Company.  In keeping with the firm’s prestigious image, Packard automobile showrooms were consistently among the most elegant of the era.  This Santa Monica example, designed by Edwell James Baume and dating from 1928, represents one of many built in the Spanish Revival style.  In keeping with the requirements of a showroom, only the building’s end walls and central pavilion maintain the Spanish Revival’s usual suggestion of mass; the remaining area is filled with a curtain of glass, set off by a delicate fringe of wrought iron grillwork along the upper edge.  The fortunes of the Packard Motor Car Company declined during the Depression, along with those of many other stalwart American marques; the firm survived the war years on the profits from armaments contracts, only to expire ignominiously as a division of the ill-starred Studebaker Corporation in 1958.  Ironically, the company’s showrooms have remained its most permanent legacy.