The World’s Longest Travel Counter!
The Automobile Club of Minneapolis was formed in the fall of 1902 in order to forward “the instruction and mutual improvement in the art of automobilism and the literary and social culture of its members.” Back in the days before your grandfather was born automobile associations not only advocated for better roads, they paid to build them. In 1911, members of the Automobile Club of Minneapolis built the AAA Auto Club Country Club on a bluff overlooking the Minnesota River in Bloomington, then they built a road to get there. A couple years later in 1913, the club spent several thousand dollars to grade, oil, and improve roads in Hennepin County.
The Auto Club’s original headquarters was in the Radisson Hotel and later the Plaza Hotel in downtown Minneapolis. In 1922 it was moved to a townhouse at 13th and LaSalle. In the 50′s, the townhouse was demolished and the operation moved to a remodeled auto agency next door. The new building boasted the world’s longest travel counter and a beautiful lobby containing at least 3 Eames Arm Fiberglass Shell chairs by Herman Miller. In 1976 the city began redeveloping the Loring-Nicollet area and AAA Minneapolis built a new building on top of the former garbage dump in Saint Louis Park. I wonder if they moved those chairs out there. I understand they fetch about $400.00 a piece e-bay these days.