Usual Suspects

The plot thickens in today’s Time Cheetah page, as we get to meet the dudes who might be stealing Henry Ford’s money!

It’s a colorful cast, and it took us a little bit to arrive at this specific lineup of car makers. Since we have a “whodunit” running in this issue, we wanted a list of people with interesting personalities that would create some friction with Ford, since that will keep you guessing as to who’s up to no good. But seeing as we intend to keep Time Cheetah at least marginally based on historical fact, we had to find contemporaries and business associates rather than just make up adversaries (though, there is one more suspect to introduce that is wholly fictional). Luckily, the early days of the Automobile industry were not lacking in interesting personalities, and the choices came pretty easy:

Dodge Brothers: you got two brothers with different personalities, who worked as suppliers for Ford but eventually leave to form their own company. Their actual history with Ford is complicated, but it’s not a stretch to say the pair didn’t like him much.

Henry Leland: Leland’s personality is mostly invention in this story, we make him into a pretty pithy asshole, but all that Cadillac stuff is true. Even crazier, Leland is responsible for later founding the Lincoln Motor Company, which in 1922 became insolvent… then got bought out by Henry Ford. And Wikipedia puts it best: “Ford deliberately low-balled his offer as revenge against Leland's role in the creation of Cadillac.”

Karl Benz: I mean… he’s German. You gotta have a German. Everybody hates Germans (sorry, Germans).

Later this week… the main man himself enters the picture. Stay tuned!