The History of the Delco-Remy Divsion of General Motors
A.K.A. "The Remy Brothers" or "The Remy Electric Company"
1896-1994
Delco-Remy at the Normandy Invasion, June 6, 1944   World War Two Products and Product Applications    The Army-Navy "E" Award   Our War Job

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The History of the Delco-Remy Division (DR)
Keeping the Memory Alive!
Start it, Light it, Ignite it!  (SLI)

John Deere Tractor and Engine Museum page added in "Museums" 8-18-2018.
Training Manual Page added.  7-2-2018.
1925 Remy Service Catalog added in "Service Manuals."  3-29-2018
Wright Museum of WWII page added in "Museums" 11-15-2017.
North Carolina Maritime Museum page added in "Museums" 7-31-2017.
Missouri Museum of Military History page added in "Museums" 7-31-2017.

The End of the Remy name!

In 2015, Borg-Warner bought Remy International Corporation.  In late November 2016, the sign in front of the the engineering and office headquarters building at the I-69 at the Pendleton, IN exit, was changed from the Remy International Corp.

It no longer had

on it.

 The name "Borg-Warner" now replaced it.  For 119 years, the name Remy was associated with a company started and, for most of its years, located in Anderson, IN.  The Remy Electric Company, Delco-Remy, Delco-Remy America and Remy International (Remy) have all carried the original Remy brothers' names, who founded the company so many years ago.  That connection with the past is now gone!

May the Remy name rest in peace.

 David D Jackson 11-30-2015

The Remy name may be gone, but the Delco-Remy name lives on!
 

While the Remy name may have disappeared from the corporations, office buildings, and factories, Delco-Remy products are and will be on display at museums throughout the United States.  The first display a visitor encounters when entering John E. Kushner Restoration Pavilion at the National WWII Museum in New Orleans, LA is this cutaway of a Packard 4M2500 marine engine.  The Delco-Remy cranking motor on the engine is prominently visible from the entrance of the building.  In September 2017 the National WWII Museum was ranked the Number 2 museum in both the USA and the world by TripAdvisor Traveler's Choice.  Visitors from around the world see the Packard cutaway with its prominently displayed DR cranking motor.  Author's photo added 3-28-2018.


All the visitors that view the engine at one of the world's most visited museums will see the Delco-Remy naval starter and its distinctive oval DR tag.  Author's photo added 3-28-2018.
 

The starter is model 824 and has serial number 8904.  Author's photo added 3-28-2018.
 
This Delco-Remy DC generator is located on the opposite side of the Packard engine.  While not as easy to see, the DR tag is still identifiable.  Author's photo added 3-28-2018.
 

World War Two era Delco-Remy starters and DC generators do more than just sit on display at museums.  They still start and provide electrical power to the three Packard 4M2500 1,500 hp marine engines in PT-305.  Just like they did for the 745 PT boats built in WWII, the Delco-Remy electrical components continue to function as they did 75 years ago when PT-305 operated in the Mediterranean, and completed 77 combat missions, assisted in two naval invasions, and sank three watercraft.  PT-305 is the only operable Higgins built PT boat combat veteran in the world.  Instead of going on combat missions in the Mediterranean, it currently provides 45-minute rides on Lake Pontchartrain in New Orleans.  The boat tours cannot begin until the DR cranking motors start the Packard engines!   Author's photo added 3-28-2018.
 

 This is the starboard Packard 4M2500 engine in PT-305.  The Delco-Remy cranking motor and DC generator are plainly visible from the deck.  Author's photo added 3-28-2018.
 
 
This is a history of the former and great  Delco-Remy Division of General Motors.  It supplied electrical equipment component for millions of GM vehicles until 1994.  For these cars and trucks, this process began with assuring the vehicle was in Park or Neutral.  If not, the DR Neutral Start Backup Switch (NSBU) would not let the vehicle start.  With that requirement met, the Delco Battery activated by DR ignition switch, pulled in a DR solenoid that energized a DR starting motor to start the engine.  To supply high tension to the spark plugs, a distributor with condenser and coil, or later a High Energy Ignition (HEI) would supply up to 20,000 volts.  Once the engine was running, the Delco-Remy alternator, known for a long time as a Delcotron, would charge the Delco Battery and supply electrical power to different electrical components.  If someone got in your way, you honked your Delco-Remy horn, activated by a DR horn relay.  When it was dark, you turned on your headlights; and, if necessary, the upper beams with DR switches.  When it rained, a Delco-Remy wiper switch would activate the windshield wipers. If you needed to cool down or warm up, you turned on the A/C or heat, and a DR vacuum actuated controller would open and close the necessary vents to get the conditioned air to you.  These are just a few of the multitude of  electrical components made by the former Delco-Remy over its 98-year history.

John Spears now has a Delco-Remy High Performance Ignition Systems WebsiteJohn's website includes many of the high-performance ignition systems from the 1960's and 1970's, and contains important historical information not found in this website. 
David D Jackson 10-9-2016


This photo was taken 11-29-1918 during the construction of Building 45, or what would be the front east end of Plant One east of the middle stairway.  The four-story Building 30 was completed in 1917 and is the background.  Building 5 on the right housed Schoolrooms 1-4 in later years.   Photo courtesy of Bob Scharnowske.
 


The Plant One or Columbus Avenue Complex with Plants 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 8, 15 and 16 circa 1973.  Today only Plant 15 and 16 survive.  Plant 15 is now owned by S&S Steel.  Plant 16 remains empty and like most of the former GM property in town, is owned by the city of Anderson.  The Plant 1, 2, and 4 areas are now soccer fields.  Note in this photo that the color of the brick shows up in two shades of red on the front of Plant One.  The more brownish toned brick is part of the original 1919 construction and the red tint is from the 1929 addition.


"The Acre" with Plants 3, 7, 10, 11, 17, 18, 19, 20 and water treatment plant circa 1973.   Today only Plants 18, 19 and 20 still exist.  Plant 20 remains forlornly vacant behind a deteriorating fence, while the west end of Plant 19 burned in an arson fire several years ago after being purchased by AMACOR, a magnesium recycling facility.  Magnesium makes for one intense fire!  Plant 18, after being vacant since 2003, was purchased in 2008 by Hy-Tech Machining of Anderson for $425,000, which also included 22 acres of land.  Hy-Tech's original intent was to utilize the lab area for its operations and tear down the three story building.  However, in early 2010 Families Forever began operating in the front through the old Plant 18 lobby entrance.  It took considerable time for me to adjust to not seeing Plant 11 as I drove south on Scatterfield Road across the railroad tracks.  It always dominated the west side of the road across from Plant 18.

When these two photos were taken in 1973, 17,501 persons were employed by the by Delco-Remy in Anderson.  This corresponds with the Delco-Remy published number of 17,431 that were employed at DR Anderson in 1965.  It is hard to see in the photos but the parking lots are filled with mostly General Motors cars, trucks, and vans.  (The painted van craze was going on at the time.)  While it is our intent not to go into the reasons for the demise of DR and GM, I have always wondered if the powers that be at GM ever realized that it had a huge built-in market for its vehicles in the component divisions in Anderson, and Kokomo, IN; Dayton and Warren, OH; Flint and Saginaw, MI; Rochester and Lockport, NY along with several other locations.  Employees in many cases were buying new GM cars every year if not every couple of years, creating a large market for its vehicles.  When GM decided it no longer needed the component divisions throughout the Midwest, the former employees and potential future employees had no further GM loyalty, when making their vehicle purchases.  Just one of many reasons GM went bankrupt in 2009.

The Redevelopment of the former Delco-Remy Anderson Site


The former Plant 11 is now the location of Buick-GMC and Ford car dealerships.  Author's photo added 6-8-2016.


Community Hospital is constructing a new medical arts building in the south-east corner of The Acre.  This area to the south of the former Plant 11 was always vacant when DR owned it.  The for sale sign is for the former Plant 18 parking lot.  Author's photo added 6-8-2016.


 


The east end of the former Plant 3 is going to be the home of the Purdue Polytechnic Center in Anderson.  Author's photo added 6-8-2016.


The sign on the left says:  "Future Site of Plant 3."  Author's photo added 6-8-2016.


The next three photos were taken in September 2016. This photo was taken from the former Plant 10 parking lot looking east.  The white building on left is in the location of the former Delco-Remy Plant 7.  In the background is the " New" Plant 3.  Author's photo added 10-9-2016.


This photo of the new plant going in at the location of the former Plant 7 was taken from the northeast corner of the former Plant Ten.  Author's photo added 10-9-2016. 


The "New" Plant 3 photographed from the same location as above.  Author's photo added 10-9-2016. 

Website last updated 10-25-2018.

 

 

Delco-Remy at the Normandy Invasion, June 6, 1944   World War Two Products and Product Applications    The Army-Navy "E" Award   Our War Job
Home  History   The Plants   Plant Photos   Moments in Time  The Products   Product Brochures   Service Manuals   Training Manuals   Training Booklets   Video  Employment Numbers   Museums   Sources  Allied Divisions   Revisions   Reunions   Remy Electric Country Club   Vintage Literature about The Remy Electric Company   Links

This Website has no affiliation with General Motors, Delphi Holdings, Remy International, or Borg-Warner.  The content is to only present a historical perspective of the plants and products of the former Delco-Remy Division previous to 1994.  All content presented on this website is for general information only.   Website designed and maintained by David D Jackson.  
Contact:  David D Jackson