Tuesday, May 18, 2010

A little history lesson

Since we didn't do any work last weekend, I figure now is a good time for a bit of a history lesson.

So this lesson will be on Ransom Eli Olds, founder of the Oldsmobile.

Ransom was born June 3 1864. He was the youngest son of a blacksmith and a pattern maker. He built his first car, a steam powered one, in 1894. In 1896 he built his first gasoline powered car. On August 21 1897 he started the Olds Motor Vehicle company. They built 11 different prototypes of various sizes and even a couple electric cars. The favorite of the plant was the little curved dash but the little rear engined water cooled 1 cylinder 4 cycle engine wasn't really known outside of the plant and was considered more of a mascot than a production model. It was considered a mascott until the plant burned down destroying all the other protypes except the Curved dash. With that as their only car the curved dash went into production. Using a technology that was never used with automobile manufacturing known as the assembly line, the Oldsmobile Curved Dash became the first mass produced affordable car. ( The whole Henry ford invented the assembly line and the model T thing is a lie and sham )

Of Course Oldsmobile wasn't just known for their inexpensive cars, they also had some early racing history.

This is the Oldsmobile Pirate, being driven by Eli in 1897.

In 1903 it set the 1 mile speed record

Also in color this thing looks even more crazy then it does in black and white.

Sadly things didn't continue on well. Over a disagreement with the direction of the Company Ransom left Oldsmobile and started REO mostly remembered for the REO Speedwagon because of the 70's band that took its name.

Ransom in 1913 also bought 37,541 acres of land north of Tampa. This was turned into Oldsmar.

Ransom died August 26 1950.

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