Happy 150th Birthday Henry Ford — Take A Look Back At The Automaker's Glory Days

Ford Pie Delivery

When Henry Ford was born on July 30, 1863 — 150 years ago today — travel was largely confined to trains and horses.

Ford revolutionised the auto industry in 1913, when he opened the first moving automobile assembly line to build the Model T. He also doubled wages to $5 per day, setting a new standard for the time.

Today, the company is in the midst of a product renaissance. The cars look and drive great, and the automaker is coming back from years of lackluster product — it smashed earnings expectations in its most recent quarter, and is finding success with hybrid models.

But what were the early days like for the company?

Ford was founded in 1903 and the groundbreaking Model T was released in 1908. In the 1910s, Ford cars dominated the roads. Thanks to Henry Ford’s stroke of genius, the assembly line, the Model T became the least expensive way to ditch that horse.

Travis Okulski contributed to this article.

This is what the Ford Motor Company looked like in the 1910s.

Workers in the plant still come in shifts. This is the four o'clock shift heading in.

The developing auto industry led to a need for people to sell the cars. Here are Ford's dealers gathered in Michigan in the early 1900s.

Business was bustling, so the factories were packed with parts and equipment.

Literally, it was full from end to end.

And it needed to be. Demand was through the roof.

This Ford saw duty delivering pies.

This fleet of vans leads us to believe that the pie delivery business was booming in the 1910s.

This laundry car has to be one of the first commercial vehicles.

You could find Fords doing everything. They were really getting America on the roads.

Just a cool shot of a Ford parked right in front of the Department of the Treasury. Try getting that close now.

The proliferation of the automobile made America create an actual road infrastructure. Thankfully, the Model T was rugged enough to handle almost any terrain.

Lincolns were introduced in 1917. This one saw duty as a hearse.

Lincolns became the step up for customers that found the Model T too common and mundane for their tastes.

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