Detroit in Wayne County, Michigan — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
Ransom Eli Olds
Erected 1997 by Michigan Historical Center, Michigan Department of State. (Marker Number S658.)
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Industry & Commerce • Roads & Vehicles. In addition, it is included in the Michigan Historical Commission series list.
Location. 42° 20.235′ N, 82° 59.592′ W. Marker is in Detroit, Michigan, in Wayne County. Marker Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Detroit MI 48207, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Gen. O. M. Poe Post No. 433 (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Grand Army of the Republic (about 400 feet away); Detroit Spanish American War Monument (approx. ¼ mile away); Alpheus S. Williams (approx. 0.3 miles away); Police Radio Dispatch (approx. 0.4 miles away); S.S. Edmund Fitzgerald (approx. 0.4 miles away); Perry's Victory (approx. 0.4 miles away); a different marker also named S.S. Edmund Fitzgerald (approx. half a mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Detroit.
1. Ransom Eli Olds
American inventor and automotive pioneer, best known as the founder of the car company that became Oldsmobile Motor Division of General Motors Corporation (GM). He was born Ransom Eli Olds on June 3, 1864, in Geneva, Ohio, the younger of two sons of Pliny Fisk Olds and Sarah Whipple Olds. In 1895, Ransom became his father’s partner at his auto shop in Lansing, MI. there they developed an internal combustion engine that he incorporated into the car. In 1897, he opened the Olds Motor Vehicle Company, replacing his father’s shop, and the Olds Gasoline Engine Works. In 1899, olds moved to Detroit, MI, formed the Olds Motor Works and designed and produced the popular Oldsmobile. With its low price, easy assembly and stylish curved dashboard, this was the first car to be produced in quantity. In order to keep up with the increasing demand for those newfangled contraptions, horseless carriages, Olds created the assembly line in 1901. The new approach to putting together automobiles enabled him to more that quadruple his factory’s output. (425 in 1901 to 2,500 in 1902). In 1904, Olds quit to form REO Motor Car Company and organized subsidiary companies to supply him with parts. He was a rare individual who tried and successfully created all means of propulsion, steam, electric, and gasoline. During the very early days of the infant auto industry, he conceptualized and the highest volume automobile producer when the others were selling their vehicles in paltry volumes.
— Submitted October 24, 2012, by Tashiana Windmon of Benton Harbor, Bh.
Credits. This page was last revised on January 20, 2020. It was originally submitted on December 11, 2008, by Al Barrera of Brownstown, Michigan. This page has been viewed 1,358 times since then and 41 times this year. Photos: 1. submitted on December 11, 2008, by Al Barrera of Brownstown, Michigan. 2. submitted on August 1, 2017, by Joel Seewald of Madison Heights, Michigan. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.