automotive history

A Matter of Perspective

Every day is good. Some days, however, are better than others. That was but one of the many pearls of wisdom passed on to me from a grizzled and weathered old cowhand that I had the pleasure of working with on a ranch along the Mexican border more years ago than I...

The Quest

It was a highway in name only. In that summer of 1915, Edsel Ford recorded in his travel journal that July 15 was a "good days run." He had driven from Williams to Kingman, Arizona, a distance of just over 153 miles on the National Old Trails Road. He had left...

Discover America

"Suddenly, a light shined down from the heavens when a very unassuming old man approached me and asked what year the car was and where we were from. We talked and I told him our story and our current situation. It was then that he introduced himself as Jim, the owner...
An Attempt to Explain

An Attempt to Explain

Exactly when thoughts first turned to ownership of a Ford Model A is unknown. Suffice to say that the seeds for this pipe dream were planted long ago, long, long ago. Well, with the passing of another birthday, and having survived the swirling disasters that was the...

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The Glory of Eccentricity

Milton O. Reeves was not a man without imagination. He was a modestly successful businessman. He was a visionary of sorts. He was also a man with steadfast determination not afraid of ridicule or derision. This is a particularly desirable quality if you intend to...

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Seamless

Seamless

A history teacher pushes the student to memorize facts and dates. In the process they often instill a life long perception that history is as dead and boring as an insurance seminar about actuary tables. A historian provides relevance. They illustrate how the events...

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Visionary or Eccentric?

Visionary or Eccentric?

The line between visionary and eccentric is often one that overlaps. Among the many things that make the formative years of the American automobile industry fascinating are manifestations that blur that line. On the visionary side of that line would be the optional...

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Bathtubs, Birdcages & Chevrolet

A key to success is an awareness of shortcomings. We all have an Achilles heel. For me there is a daily struggle with distractions. As an example, this afternoon while preparing for the next episode of Coffee With Jim, the live stream program on the Jim Hinckley’s America Facebook page, I was thumbing through a 1929 Rand McNally atlas. As this weeks program with be a virtual tour along U.S. 6, I was looking for information about the highways course in Pennsylvania.

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Well, That Didn’t Work

Well, That Didn’t Work

I had prepared the script with rich detail about Ludlow, Daggett, Newberry Springs and other outposts of civilization along the Route 66 corridor in the Mojave Desert. For illustrations I had combed my archives and created a well designed presentation. There was a...

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