Some businessmen creative innovative products. Others create massive fortunes. Very few create an entire system of production, an entire industry, and one of the world's biggest companies, all within the same time period. Henry Ford, one of the world's most important industrialists, is one of the few that have done such a thing, and his story remains one of the world's most inspiring and interesting.
Born in 1863 in a small township that's now part of Detroit, Michigan, Henry Ford's early life was spent on a small rural farm. With a farmer for a father and a housewife for a mother, Ford's earliest years were spent surrounded by machinery. Impressed by farm equipment but uninterested in farm work as a career, he began training as a machinist in his late teens at a business in Detroit.
Ford was known as a talented repairman, having assembled and repaired watches during his early childhood years. His talents were soon put to the test as an engineer at the Edison Company, one of the city's pioneering mechanical corporations. He invested heavily in the company's projects, and in his own too, eventually creating the Ford Quadricycle, an invention that would contribute heavily to his later engineering feats designing motorcars.