Henry Ford founded the Ford Motor Company. His father William Ford emigrated from Ballinscarthy near Clonakilty County Cork, Ireland to America in 1846. Henry Ford manufactured the Ford Model T, the first car to be affordable to a person on an average income. It made possible relatively cheap travel and brought about a revolution in transportation.
Henry Ford began the mass production of the ‘Model T’ in October 1908. The assembly line as a method of production in the motor industry had been first introduced in 1901 by Ransome E Olds. He used the method to build the first mass produced car which was known as the Oldsmobile Dash. Henry Ford introduced a similar method to mass produce the Model T. He succeeded in developing and improving the method to the stage where it took only 93 minutes to fully assemble a car.
Production of the Model T continued for nineteen years and by 1917 it accounted for over half of all the cars in the world. Initially the car was available in several colours but from 1913 to 1925 it was available only in black. By 1925 over 2 million units of the Model T were being sold annually. Ford ceased production of the Model T in 1927. Henry Ford drove the final and 15 millionth car off the assembly line, accompanied by his son Edsel. The Model T remained the top selling car in the world until February 17th 1972. On that date sales of the Volkswagen Beetle surpassed those of the Model T. The Model T is still in the list of the top ten best-selling cars of all time.
Henry Ford and his son Edsel paid a visit to his father’s home place in Ballinscarthy in 1912. He returned to Ireland in 1917 and established a plant in Cork City producing Fordson Tractors. It was the first manufacturing plant built by Ford outside the USA. The plant in Cork later produced Ford cars such as, the Prefect, the Cortina and the Sierra. Members of the Ford family continue to visit Cork.
The last Ford Model T was driven off the assembly line at the Ford factory in Highland Park, Michigan USA in the year 1927 On This Day.
1917 Model T Ford
Photo by Jon’s pics