Torn-Down Tuesday: Don Allen (and Dan Creed) Chevrolet, Main at Fillmore

By Steve Cichon

Don Allen touted himself as “the World’s Largest Chevrolet Dealer,” and through the 1950s, he probably was.

Headquartered from his showroom at Main & Fillmore (located in the spot where Rite Aid now stands), Allen bought and sold Chevy dealerships all around Western New York and around the country.

Aside from the store he bought in Buffalo in 1938, there were dealerships in Lackawanna and Lockport locally, along with others in Albany, Manhattan and Miami.

Buffalo Stories archives

When Allen died in 1959, his automobile empire was selling 40,000 cars a year.

Buffalo Stories archives

The Main/Fillmore shop was eventually sold to Joe Bokman, who in turn sold the dealership to the infamous Dan Creed in 1972.

Like Allen, the Main at Fillmore location was part of Creed’s larger automotive empire. He owned dealerships in Canada and Rochester as well, and is remembered for his abrasive television commercials, which were described in the Rochester Democrat & Chronicle this way in 1976:

Creed would scrawl prices with shoe polish on car windows and tell TV viewers, “If you don’t buy at this price, SHAME ON YOU.”

Buffalo Stories archives

In 1999, Buffalo’s first free-standing Eckerd Pharmacy opened on the spot. In 2006, Rite Aid bought out Eckerd.

1941 ad


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Steve Cichon

Steve Cichon is a proud Buffalonian helping the world experience the city he loves. writing about the people, places, and ideas that make Buffalo unique and special. The storyteller and historian has written six books, worn bow ties since the 80s, and is the News Director at WECK Radio. A 25 year Buffalo media veteran, Steve's contributed more than 1400 Buffalo History stories to The Buffalo News, worked at WIVB-TV, Empire Sports Network, and spent ten years as a newsman and News Director at WBEN Radio. He's also put his communication skills to work as an adjunct professor, a producer of PBS documentaries, and even run for Erie County Clerk. Steve's Buffalo roots run deep: all eight of his great-grandparents called Buffalo home, with his first ancestors arriving here in 1827.