In 1915 Frederick D Patterson was the first black to build cars between 1915-1919 and produced 150 cars in Ohio. According to advertisements, there were two models: a two-door touring car and a four-door roadster. The cars were run by a 30-horsepower, 4-cylinder engine and included a full floating rear axle, a suspension that sat on cantilever springs, electric starting and lighting and a split windshield for ventilation. The cost was around $850.
Eventually, competition from large Detroit auto manufacturers forced Patterson to build trucks and buses, and for a time the company prospered. The stock market crash and Patterson’s death in 1932 caused the company to close.
“If it’s a Patterson it’s a good one” had been a slogan for the company’s carriages, and that was equally true of the company’s automobile."
Let us know what you think of our stories by leaving a comment.