Henry Ford and Oliver Barthel Driving the Ford Sweepstakes Racer on West Grand Boulevard, Detroit, Michigan, August 1901

Summary

The 1901 "Sweepstakes" race car may have been Henry Ford's brainchild, but he had help bringing it into being. Oliver Barthel, a friend of Ford's and an engineer, was the car's principal designer. Years later Barthel recalled that, just before this photo was taken, "Sweepstakes" had hit 72 miles per hour in a trial run.

The 1901 "Sweepstakes" race car may have been Henry Ford's brainchild, but he had help bringing it into being. Oliver Barthel, a friend of Ford's and an engineer, was the car's principal designer. Years later Barthel recalled that, just before this photo was taken, "Sweepstakes" had hit 72 miles per hour in a trial run.

Artifact

Photographic print

Subject Date

August 1901

Creators

Alvord & Co. 

Creator Notes

Photographed by Alvord & Co., Detroit, Michigan.

 On Exhibit

By Request in the Benson Ford Research Center

Object ID

33.483.1

Credit

From the Collections of The Henry Ford.

Material

Paper (Fiber product)

Technique

Gelatin silver process
Typewriting

Color

Black-and-white (Colors)

Dimensions

Height: 8.25 in

Width: 10 in

Inscriptions

Typewriting on back reads: Mr. Ford and Mr. Oliver E Barthel Taken by Alwood [sic] & Co., Commercial photographers the latter part of August 1901 on the North Grand Boulevard just west of Second. The west end of the Fisher Building would have shown in the right background if it had been build then. Picture taken just after completing a trial run over a measured half mile and timed with an electrical timing device. The speed attained was 72 miles per hour. Engine was a two cyliner 7 x 7 horizontal opposed engine.e. Original picture and information obtained from Mr. Oliver E. Barthel, Consulting Engineer, Dime Bank Building, Detroit. 10-13-33

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