There is a pretty cool tire store on Detroit’s west side, and from what I understand it’s been in business since the early 1930s. The decades-old shop is housed in a one story repair/garage facility. The old building has classic Art Deco features, such as the semi-curved corners and rich colors from the period that wrap around the building. I didn’t pay much attention to the place as I rode by until I saw a unique statue mounted on the roof.
What caught my eye that day was a sculpture or statue of a young boy holding a candle in his left hand with an old tire held high in his right hand. He was perched on the edge of the one-story building, overlooking the parking lot. The boy was wearing what appeared to be one-piece sleeper pajamas and had an expression on his face that looked as if he was singing or yawning. After a little research, I discovered the statue is from the Fisk Tire Company and it is called “The Fisk Tire Boy”.
The Fisk Tire Boy was designed and rolled out to auto tire dealers in the 1920s as a brand advertising piece. Based on its immense popularity with the tire dealers (and the general public), the yawing boy became Fisk’s official trademark and was used in various advertising and promotional pieces. The tag line used for this little guy was called, “Time to Re-Tire”.
Interestingly, I spotted this vintage rooftop statue while on a bicycle ride. I later learned that the Fisk Tire Company originally produced rubber tires for bicycles in the late 1800s.