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So when was the first-ever automotive built? For that we have to go back to the year 1672 when a Jesuit priest named Ferdinand Verbiest built the then Emperor Kangxi's son a small riderless contraption for the Emperor's son to play with. The riderless car used steam for its fuel and could travel around the pace gardens at some speed, however from that day on nothing much more was done by inventors to model a car so everything for quite some time went quiet and horses still ruled the roads.
It would be close to one hundred years later that once again an inventor named Nicolas-Joseph Cugnot built a strange-looking contraption, once again powered by steam, which was capable of carrying a single person in a rather rickety chair, attached to the car with bits of string and old sacking cloths.
It also did not help by having the chair situated directly behind the smoke and steam outlet of the car, so as he drove the driver would become covered in black soot and other evil-smelling debris.
Apparently, the French citizens of the time did not like the look of the car anyway, they found it both noisy and dirty, so once again, the horse continued to rule the roads and country lanes of France.
Authors note: it is around this time that Americans started to take an interest in cars and trains. They had already seen what the steam engines had done for the industrial revolution, so it was not long that they started experimenting with steam as a mode of transport. After many horrendous failures, some causing the death of people standing on the roadside, the first patent for a steam fueled car was granted to Oliver Evens on May 3, 1789.
If you thought that the electric car was a new invention then think again. The first electric car to run on the roads of Austria happened back in 1859 and was made possible because of the invention of the lead-acid battery by Ányos Jedlik, and Gaston Planté. However, not much became of this tranquil mode of transport as the batteries required to power the automobile were so large that in some cases they were towed behind the car, held together with chains and links in a little red trailer. They painted the trailer red so that it would indicate to pedestrians of its danger, the electric car then went into obscurity until the late 1980s when work on electric vehicles once again started up in earnest.
I still remember as a young lad in the 1950s that the only electric vehicles on the roads in those days were the milk wagons. These wagans were plugged in every night to give them enough of a charge for the following day delivering milk, but even so, you would quite often spot one of these milk wagons stuck on the side of the road simply because they had run out of power.
Thinking back to those times, if I remember correctly, the milk wagons had a top speed of about twenty-five miles per hour, so if you saw a milk wagon while out driving, you would always scurry past so as not to become trapped behind it.
Authors note: The milk wagon was the first automobile that I actually drove, and have to say I had immense fun driving it. However, you have to remember delivering milk was an early morning job. A job which usually started at about four-thirty in the morning, finished around midday, and I then walked a couple of miles to where the milk depot was, received the principal sum of approximately "One Doller" for all my hard work.
For the automobile things then quieted down, and no other further advances took place in quite some time. Then, in 1838, something happened which would make owning a car possible for most of the American public, the Four-Stroke internal combustion engine was invented by Nicholaus Otto closely followed by another engine built. It was more or less the same but powered by diesel, now car manufactures had a simple engine they could work with, even today this simple four-stroke engine forms the basis for most cars built.
It did not take long for a certain gentleman to take notice of this trailblazing invention. He knew, without thinking, that he could build cars, many cars. The gentleman I am speaking about is of course Henry Ford who set up one of the world's first assembly line automobile factories. Now it was possible for all to own a car, so from that day on Horses did not rule the roads anymore the gas-powered car had become the thing to drive, and Henry Ford built millions and also, of course, became one of the richest men on our planet.
Well, guys, I am afraid we have come to the end of this short narrative I do hope you all enjoyed the read and I will see you a bit later for another short informational BargainBrute narrative.
You all stay safe and well.
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