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Swift writes more on the amazing Model T Ford

In my column last week I mentioned that the development of the Model T Ford automobile among other events was very important as labor saving devices. There were, of course, automobiles on the market before Henry Ford’s contribution to the industry but those machines were out of reach financially for most folks.
While the Model T was not the first of Ford’s cars to be made, it was the most successful. I think that there are a few local people who own the Model T. It is popular as a collectable car. I didn’t know until the last several years that the Model T wasn’t the first car the Ford Company manufactured. First was the Model A. There were not 19 production models between the Model A and the Model T, some were only prototypes. The model N was the company’s largest success up to then. The next production model was the Model A reportedly because Henry Ford wanted to start over with a
departure from his past efforts.
But the Model T was the car that put America on wheels and changed the world. It was exceptionally successful. It was produced from 1908 until 1927. It was the first car to be manufactured with interchangeable parts and it was marketed to the middle class.
Henry Ford remarked concerning the vehicle: “I will build a car for the great multitude. It will be large enough for the family, but small enough for the individual to run and care for. It will be constructed of the best materials, the best men to be hired, after the simplest designs that modern engineering can devise. But it will be so low in price that no man making a good salary will be unable to own one and enjoy with his family the blessing of hours of pleasure in God’s great open spaces.”
There were of course luxury automobiles that cost hundreds of dollars more than the Model T, but they were out of reach by the average person.
The Model T, also known as Tin Lizzie, put the world on wheels. It could attain a speed of 45 miles per gallon and you could drive 25 miles on a gallon of gasoline. Moreover gasoline was probably 10 cents per gallon. That’s a guess. The cost of the T started out at $825 but became as low as $260. Fol¬lowing the Model T was the Model A.
The Model T won the Car of the Century Award. It was shipped to many parts of the world. More than 15 million Model T cars were manufactured by May of 1927 when the assembly line was stopped. Some changes were made during its production run. Electric lights were add¬ed in 1915. The radiator shell changed from brass to black in 1916. In 1919 an electric starter became an option on the closed cars. Early on the Ts were started with a crank at the front of the vehicle. Those cranks were notorious for injuring hands and arms if they weren’t used properly.
As I mentioned in last week’s column, my father owned a 1932 Model B Ford. The Model B was the first Ford to have a V8 motor.
Henry Ford was reportedly the first to raise the wages of his workers to a minimum of$5.00 per day for an eight-hour day