Expert Sets

The experts at The Henry Ford have carefully created these sets. Explore a specific topic or use these as a foundation for building your own collection.

The experts at The Henry Ford have carefully created these sets. Explore a specific topic or use these as a foundation for building your own collection.

Just Added to Our Digital Collections

Created 01.24.2016 | 23 artifacts

Browse selected artifacts recently added to The Henry Ford's digital collections. These are just a handful of the nearly 400 new items digitized in June 2018.

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Horse-drawn Deliveries

Created 09.10.2018 | 10 artifacts

Horse-drawn delivery wagons remained in use well into the automobile age. Even in the 1920s, it wasn't unusual to see milk, ice, or produce delivered by horse--especially in smaller towns. Horses were well suited to the frequent stops and starts along a route and could negotiate poor roads better than early motorized vehicles. As roads improved and trucks became less expensive to operate and maintain, the horse-drawn delivery wagon faded away.

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Mr. Spurt and His Auto

Created 09.10.2018 | 8 artifacts

Before movies, Americans delighted in "Magic Lantern" slide shows. Artist Joseph Boggs Beale drew eight images for the 1906 slide series "Mr. Spurt and His Auto," lampooning the problems of early motoring.

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Building Eagle Boats at the Rouge

Created 07.16.2018 | 27 artifacts

Over the years, Ford Motor Company's River Rouge factory turned out everything from tractors to cars to pickup trucks. But its first products had no wheels at all. From May 1918 to October 1919, Ford built 60 "Eagle" anti-submarine patrol boats at the Rouge. World War I ended before any of the Eagles saw action, but they proved that even warships could be made on an assembly line.

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Auto Shows

Created 05.29.2018 | 16 artifacts

Auto shows serve many purposes. They provide automakers with a place to share their latest models with the press and the public. They allow aftermarket vendors to promote goods and services. And they give visitors a chance to research -- or maybe just dream about -- their next new car. Part trade show, part show business, the auto show is an institution nearly as old as the automobile itself.

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Created 05.22.2018 | 14 artifacts

Hay is a mixture of cut grasses or crops like alfalfa or clover that keeps farm animals well fed during winter months. Making hay is a labor-intensive and time-consuming process--farmers cut, dry, and store hay all summer long. It is also a race against time--rain damages the crop drying in the fields. Mechanical innovations have reduced the time and labor--but not the urgency--required to complete this essential chore.

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America’s Bicentennial Celebration

Created 05.18.2018 | 17 artifacts

The 1976 Bicentennial of American Independence was a major cultural phenomenon. A wave of patriotism and nostalgia swept the nation. For more than a year, it seemed that everyone was organizing events and activities to commemorate this milestone.

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Favorite Eames Artifacts

Created 05.11.2018 | 13 artifacts

Husband-and-wife team Ray and Charles Eames are icons of mid-century modern design. Here, some of our design-loving staff members select a favorite Eames artifact from our collections and elaborate on their choice.

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Concept Cars

Created 05.08.2018 | 16 artifacts

For many people, concept cars are the highlight of any big auto show. These fantastic vehicles showcase futuristic technology or bold styling -- and sometimes both. Some are fully functional, while others are little more than fiberglass shells. Few concept cars ever go into production, but the innovations they feature occasionally find their way into the cars we drive every day.

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Emergence of the Tractor

Created 04.20.2018 | 15 artifacts

American agriculture entered a "golden age" during the late nineteenth century. High market prices for wheat drove farmers to the Plains and Western states where they carved out large -- and profitable -- "bonanza" farms. Innovative machinery reduced labor costs and a competitive traction engine industry emerged. In the 1910s, to meet the needs of farmers with less acreage, these steam-powered traction engines evolved into today's iconic tractor.

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