February 16, 1843 Henry Martyn Leland, who would leave an indelible mark on the American automobile industry, was born in northeastern Vermont. As a young man, he worked as for the renowned tools manufacturer Brown & Sharp in Providence, Rhode Island. That job and others helped Leland refine a wide range of mass-production and mechanical... Continue Reading →

In 1956, McKinley Thompson became the first African-American car designer for a major automobile manufacturer when the Ford Motor Company hired him. Thompson, who was born in New York City in 1922, recalled that his choice of career first took shape when he was only 12 years old. He noticed one day how sunlight broke... Continue Reading →

October 11, 1910 In Ohio’s Cuyahoga County, a recently completed bridge was dedicated in the Cleveland region. The new structure, carrying Detroit Road over the Rocky River, was the fifth bridge built at that location to connect the cities of Rocky River and Lakewood. Construction on this version of the Detroit Rocky River Bridge began... Continue Reading →

June 7, 1911 Industrial designer Brooks Stevens was born in Milwaukee. His wide range of design efforts included many with a transportation theme of some kind. Stevens was stricken with polio as a child, and the experience proved to be pivotal in shaping his lifelong aspirations. While bedridden to deal with and ultimately prevail over... Continue Reading →

Automobile designer Gordon M. Buehrig died in Grosse Pointe Woods, Michigan, at the age of 85. Buehrig had been born in Mason City, Illinois, in 1904. Early on in life, he developed a robust enthusiasm for automobiles and drawing pictures of them – an enthusiasm that wasn’t always readily shared or even encouraged by others. ... Continue Reading →

American inventor Robert Fulton took his newly-built paddle steamboat out on the Seine River in France for a test run. Unfortunately, the ship sank. Nevertheless, Fulton was not discouraged. He was accustomed to perfecting his designs and inventions in high-profile situations. Born in Pennsylvania in 1765, Fulton grew up in the environs of Philadelphia, and,... Continue Reading →

Robert Gerwig, a civil engineer who specialized in designing railways for unusually challenging terrain, was born in the city of Karlsruhe in the Grand Duchy of Baden (now part of the state of Baden-Württemberg in southwestern Germany). Gerwig studied civil engineering at Polytechnische Schule (the present-day University of Karlsruhe), and initially focused on road construction.... Continue Reading →

In Hong Kong, a significant portion of Tsing Sha Highway was first opened to traffic. The Friday morning debut took place five years and four months after construction on this segment of a major expressway in one of the world’s most densely populated regions had begun. The segment, which extends from Sha Tin (an area... Continue Reading →

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