Ninety-eight years ago on this date -- Nov. 14, 1914 -- the Dodge Brothers produced their first car. Or at least, that's the convenient history. But we did some fact checking, and it turns out that on Nov. 14, 1914, the Dodge Brothers (that's supposedly Horace on the left and John on the right, but correct us if we have them backwards) were merely photographed riding in the rear seat of the first car to bear their last name. According to "The Dodge Brothers: The men, the motor cars, and the legacy" by Charles K. Hyde, here's the full story:
The widely accepted history of the initial production of early Dodge Brothers automobiles in November 1914 is at odds with much of the evidence about the earliest Dodge Brothers cars. Automotive historians have thought that the first production car, later named "Old Betsy," came off the assembly line at the Hamtramck factory on 14 November 1914. Guy Ameel, superintendent of final assembly for Dodge Brothers since the start of automobile production, served as John and Horace's chauffeur that day. With the brothers in the back seat, Ameel stopped the first Dodge Brothers car in front of John Dodge's mansion on Boston Boulevard in Detroit and a photographer recorded this important moment.
"Old Betsy" was more likely an experimental prototype car assembled several months before 14 November 1914 and not a production car at all...
So, there you have it: The Dodge Brothers were photographed being chauffeured around in a prototype vehicle in front of one of their mansions on this date 98 years ago.