Learn California.org
Home Visit the Students section Visit the Teachers section Visit the Research California section Visit the Sitemap
Keyword Search

Driving Forces
 

<= 1895

Early Road Hazards =>


During the early history of the automobile, entrepreneurs explored different means of propulsion including steam, electricity, and air compression.  California’s Beardsley Electric Company was one of many companies established to manufacture and market these vehicles.  Ultimately, however, gasoline became the preferred fuel for cars like Ford’s Model A.  As a result, gasoline-refining businesses such as San Francisco’s Capitol Refining Company proliferated throughout the first half of the twentieth century.

Click on a thumbnail to view an enlarged copy of the image, then click on the BACK button to return to this page.


The Beardsley Electric Company filed its Articles of Incorporation with California’s Secretary of State in 1913.  (Articles of Incorporation include information about a company’s directors and stockholders, place of business, purpose, term of incorporation, value of stock, and number of shares issued.)  The company dealt in vehicle manufacture, sales and upkeep.  At the time, it was just one of many companies developing various modes of transportation including electric, compressed air, and gasoline-powered automobiles.  By 1918, the Beardsley Co. was no longer an active corporation. Articles of Incorporation, Records of the Secretary of State, California State Archives

The Beardsley Electric Company filed its Articles of Incorporation with California’s Secretary of State in 1913.  (Articles of Incorporation include information about a company’s directors and stockholders, place of business, purpose, term of incorporation, value of stock, and number of shares issued.)  The company dealt in vehicle manufacture, sales and upkeep.  At the time, it was just one of many companies developing various modes of transportation including electric, compressed air, and gasoline-powered automobiles.  By 1918, the Beardsley Co. was no longer an active corporation. Articles of Incorporation, Records of the Secretary of State, California State Archives

Beardsley Electric Company

The Beardsley Electric Co. filed its Articles of Incorporation with California’s Secretary of State in 1913. (Articles of Incorporation include information about a company’s directors and stockholders, place of business, purpose, term of incorporation, value of stock, and number of shares issued.) The company dealt in vehicle manufacture, sales and upkeep. By 1918, the Beardsley Co. was no longer an active corporation.

Articles of Incorporation, Records of the Secretary of State, California State Archives


Beardsley Electric Car, 1914. The California-based Beardsley Electric Co. proclaimed that it designed its electric cars for Pacific Coast roads and climate. The company targeted both male and female drivers with its advertising campaigns. Advertisement, Out West Magazine, Dec. 1914, Ephemera Collection, California State Archives

Beardsley Electric Car, 1914

The California-based Beardsley Electric Company proclaimed that it designed its electric cars for Pacific Coast roads and climate. The company targeted both male and female drivers with its advertising campaigns.

Advertisement, Out West Magazine, Dec. 1914, Ephemera Collection, California State Archives


Motor Gasoline, Capitol Refining Co., San Francisco, 1905. Several different means of propulsion were explored during the early history of the automobile, including electricity and air compression.  Ultimately, gasoline became the preferred fuel. Trademarks, Records of the Secretary of State, California State Archives

Motor Gasoline Trademark, Capitol Refining Co., San Francisco

Capitol Refining Company, incorporated in 1903, filed this “Motor Gasoline” trademark with California’s Secretary of State in 1905.  The company formed in order to mine, manufacture, refine, and sell petroleum products like gasoline.

Trademarks, Records of the Secretary of State, California State Archives

1929 Ford Model A Coupe, with Rumbleseat. Ford  introduced the Model A in December 1927. The Model A replaced the Model T, offering technical improvements and a  sleeker appearance in a variety of body styles. The car’s price ranged from $385 to $570. It was produced until early 1932. During that period, Ford sold almost 5 million Model As. Artifact Collection, California State Archives

1929 Ford Model A Coupe, with Rumbleseat

Ford introduced the Model A in December 1927. The Model A replaced the Model T, offering technical improvements and a sleeker appearance in a variety of body styles. The car’s price ranged from $385 to $570. It was produced until early 1932. During that period, Ford sold almost 5 million Model As.

Artifact Collection, California State Archives



Back to 1895
Go to Early Road Hazards


Copyright ©2000-2009 LearnCalifornia.org. All rights reserved.