Templar Motor Car

Templar Motors Co., a manufacturer of luxury automobiles,was founded in 1917 by Arthur M. Dean, J.E. Mathews and Matthew F. Bramley, all Knights Templar. Bramley was the founder of Cleveland Trinidad Paving Co., the company that laid the first asphalt street in Cleveland, and became president of Templar Motors. The Templar plant was located at 4000 Halstead Street, at Plover Street. Templar designed its engines, which were built in its own factory. A single chassis was used for the entire product line; the bodies were built to the company's specifications and under their supervision by the Lang Body Company, the Ohio Blower Company and the Rubay Co.

The Templar was a "small" car, or a sports car in the parlance of today. Its emblem was the Maltese cross, associated with the Templar knights – among the most skilled fighters of the crusades. Great attention was paid to every detail. The body was given 27 coats of paint. Standard on the five-passenger touring car and four-passenger "sportette" model were an inspection light (powered by the car's battery), an electric horn, a tire pump and hose that was powered by the car's engine, windshield wiper, a complete toolkit including a jack, and a locking ignition. The Templar Roadsters also came equipped with a Kodak 3A camera and a compass. These were features available as "extras" from other manufacturers, if they were available at all.

Templar Motors Co. went out of business in 1924. In 1925, the factory became Bramley Storage, one of Ohio's largest furniture storage facilities. In 1927, Wasmer Fasteners moved into the building and in 1929, Tru-Fit Fasteners started production. In 1947, the Wasmer family started Lake Erie Screw Products, which continued at the Athens Avenue location until 2004. Today, more than 30 tenants, many of them artists, occupy the building, which houses the eight-car Templar Motors Factory Display.