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August 5, 1899 – Henry Ford starts his first car biz, the Detroit Automobile Company
This Day

August 5, 1899 – Henry Ford starts his first car biz, the Detroit Automobile Company

A Detroit Automobile Company delivery truck, circa 1900. Is that Henry on the left? He had a gift. At least, that's what 12 investors believed of Detroit mechanic and inventor Henry Ford. The Quadricycle and other early Ford ventures wooed the men into funding the Detroit Automobile Company, which was founded on this day in 1899. The investors, which included Detroit Mayor William Maybury, pooled $15,000 (~ $456,000 in 2020) in capital to start the car company, which was the first of its kind in the city. Henry, not to be left without means, negotiated a salary of $150 per month, about $4,560 in 2020. This allowed him to resign from his strenuous job at the Edison Illuminating Company. His investors would soon find that Henry, though a hard worker, was also a perfectionist. This charac...

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