Tuesday 26th June 1945
Born on this day, Benjamin Briscoe, Detroit, Michigan born automobile pioneer and industrialist. Mr. Briscoe conceived the idea of consolidating the four largest automobile manufacturers—Ford Motor Company, Buick, REO, and Maxwell-Briscoe—into one company. His negotiations with William C. Durant, Henry Ford, and Ransom E. Olds failed, so he proceeded to organize his own corporation along the broad lines he envisaged resulting in the United States Motor Company. U. S. Motors continued production of the Maxwell and was soon also producing the Stoddard-Dayton car, the Brush Runabout (in which his brother Frank Briscoe was a principal), Alden-Sampson trucks, and others. The firm continued to operate the old Maxwell-Briscoe plants and bought up such concerns as the Columbia Motor Car Co., owner of many patents, including the Selden patent. Briscoe had an option on the Cadillac car at one time, but never exercised it, and it eventually went to Mr. Durant, who had organized the General Motors Corporation. In 1910 bankers invested $6,000,000 in U. S. Motors, but the financing proved inadequate and the firm went into receivership in 1912. Briscoe was forced out and Walter Flanders took over and reorganized the assets as Maxwell Motor Co. (Incorporated), which itself was later reorganized as the Chrysler Corporation.