Henry Ford Quotes - The Henry Ford

The Ford Flathead V8 and the Fall of Henry Ford > Ate …
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Ford's two top soybean researchers during this testing period had been Robert Allen Boyer, head of the laboratory studying industrial applications, and Dr. Edsel Ruddiman, doing soyfoods research. Boyer, born on 30 September 1909 in Toledo, Ohio, had moved to South Sudbury, Massachusetts when his father had been hired by Ford to run the nation's oldest hotel there, the Wayside Inn. Ford, who had a real eye for promising young talent, had "discovered" Boyer at the Inn in 1925 during one of Ford's frequent visits there. Attracted by the boy's keen, active mind, Ford had suggested to Boyer that, instead of following his plans to enter Andover prep school and then Dartmouth College, he enroll in the new Henry Ford Trade School and participate in its unique work-study program at the adjacent huge River Rouge auto factory. Boyer accepted the idea and after attending the trade school from 1927-1929 he graduated at age 21, a promising research chemist; he took his first job as head of the new soybean lab at the Edison Institute. Ford liked to call the Edison Institute (which was both a school and a research center) the "School for Inventors." He once said he would like to put a sign over the front door which would read "Place for Damn Fool Experiments," although he never did.

The saga of the famous Ford flathead V8, the 1932-1940 Fords, and the downfall of Henry Ford I.
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Henry Ford and His Employees - SoyInfo Center

The outbreak of World War II and the suspension of automobile production forced Ford to abandon his efforts to mass-produce plastic car bodies. Until 1943, however, he maintained that he would build them as soon as the war was over, even though engineers had run into problems; the plastic ended up costing much more than steel because the panels took a long time to cure in their molds. Ford died in 1946 and, according to the Ford Motor Company, the idea just seems to have gotten lost in the files ( 1973). But others were soon to follow Ford's lead; in 1953 General Motors introduced the first car with a plastic body, the highly successful Chevrolet Corvette. Studebaker's plastic Avanti appeared in 1962. The Ford Company was using an average of 29 pounds of plastic in its cars by 1962, 50 pounds by 1968, 120 pounds by 1972, and 200 pounds by 1980. But whereas Ford wanted his plastic cars made from renewable crop resources, the new plastics are merely chemicals/synthetics.

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Perhaps no one was more convinced of Henry Ford’s brilliance than Henry himself. Such confidence was understandable considering his accomplishments: He had put Americans on wheels and revolutionized the process of mass production. John Dahlinger (who claimed to be Henry’s illegitimate son) later told author David Halberstam that Henry once described himself as the author of the modern industrial age — a claim not without justice, it must be said, but one that spoke volumes about Henry’s ego.

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