Brief History of the Carbone Family of Cars.
Don’s Ford Superstore was established in 1968. But the Carbone tradition of quality goes back much farther. The story begins in the Upstate New York city ofUtica, in the year when the roaring 20′s came to an abrupt end and the nation embarked upon hard times.
Joe Carbone: $40 and the Drive to Succeed.
When a 19-year old kid from East Utica named Joe Carbone decided to use his life-savings of to start a business, nothing – not even the Great Depression – could stop him.
Joseph Carbone was the oldest of four children. When his father Dominick died in 1918, Carbone left formal school and delivered milk for the family dairy business. He started his first car venture in May, 1929, opening the C&S Garage on Wetmore Street with his friend and partner, Phil Sacco. Carbone, then 19, and Sacco, a year older, pooled their resources to get the business started. For Carbone, that amounted to $40.00. Their new business consisted of an eight-stall garage, a Cadillac converted into a homemade tow car, and two employees – themselves.
In spite of Carbone youth, this car-loving entrepreneur already knew the secret of a successful business – customer service. Despite the Depression, Joe knew he would succeed if he concentrated on doing the best job he could….and treating people well.
Carbone Motor Sales is Born.
Eventually, Joe Carbone became sole owner of the business. When Phil Sacco left the partnership in 1931, Joe began to buy and sell used cars. He proudly renamed the business Carbone Motor Sales. In 1933. Carbone accepted a franchise from Graham-Page and expanded his business to a larger facility on Uticaâ€™s Bleecker Street.
In 1936 Carbone married Inez Paolozzi. She immediately became the secretary and accountant for the infant business. “We put a lot of hours in,” recalled Joseph Carbone, “a lot of hours.”
The Carbone Family Grows… In More Ways Than One.
In 1938, Carbone Motor Sales saw significant expansion, adding the Studebaker and International Truck franchises. The Carbone family was destined to expand, as well, with the arrival of sons Don and Al. Their growing family resided in an apartment above the dealership.
“We were both born and brought up in the automobile business,” said Don Carbone. He remembers washing the showroom floor mornings before school, as well as a host of other mundane tasks no one else wanted to do. His daily walk home took him right through the garage. Al Carbone recalls those early days with equal fondness. “I was born with the business in my blood,” said Al.
As convenient as living upstairs from the dealership was, it did have its downsides. “Mom used to have canaries,” Don recalled. His brother nodded. “We lost all the canaries because of the fumes,” Al added. “We just couldn’t keep a bird.”
Don and Al Carbone: A Second Generation of Automotive Excellence.
Now you know how the Carbone Family of Cars got its start. But that’s not even half of the story. Over our 70-year history, we’ve made it our mission to provide excellent customer service, as well as the finest automobiles in the world. We proudly stand behind the products we sell, and the communities we serve. That has been the secret of our success since Joseph Carbone first opened his business in 1929. And that’s the way it will always be at the Carbone Family of Cars.
Listen to the audio below to learn more…