Indiana is probably not the place you think of as the Mecca of car manufacturing in the US, but in the early days of the automotive industry it was.
Elwood Haynes was one of the earliest to made a car in the US. (Notice my use of the verb “made”, not “manufacture”. He actually was making it in the kitchen until his wife banished him to the shed out back.) His 1894 Pioneer is housed in the Smithsonian.
Haynes established the first commercially successful gasoline engine car company in the US, manufacturing cars from 1898 until 1925 (1898-1904 Haynes-Apperson, 1904-1925 Haynes).
Other car companies quickly followed in Indiana his footsteps. Unfortunately most of these Hoosier car manufacturers did not survive the 1920s. The following is an incomplete list of early Hoosier car manufacturers at the Kokomo Automotive Museum.
|Car Manufacturer||Dates||Indiana City|