Fall 2017

It’s a known fact that Henry Ford sold mil- lions of Model Ts. With his requirement in building each automobile, there was the need for wood in the making of the dashboards, floors, wheels and steering wheels. So this man on a mission Henry Ford decided to find his own supply of wood. He asked a real estate agent, Edward Kingsford, for help. Ford purchased timberland and built a sawmill and parts plant near his Highland Park, Michigan auto factory. The sawmill and plant produced the parts and also a lot of wood waste. Ford knew all that wood waste could be processed into something useful. So, under his direction, Orin Stafford, a chemist from the University of Oregon, developed a method of making charcoal from wood waste. These charcoal pieces were de- signed into tiny ‘pillows’ called briquettes. Then Ford commissioned his friend Thomas Edison to design a briquette factory next to the sawmill and parts plant. Again Ford called upon his cousin’s husband Edward Kingsford to operate the factory. In a short time through his dealerships, Ford made the briquettes available for sale to fish and meat smokehous- es. And, eventually, ‘picnic kits’ became an exclusive sell of the Ford dealerships which contained a package of charcoal briquettes along with a portable grill. So, it was Henry Ford, an enterprising and adventurous man, who brought about the idea of a road trip and a picnic to be the perfect combination. What came about next was the onset of backyard barbeque popularity which still holds on as an American tradition today! In 1951, The Ford Charcoal Company was sold to an investment group. The group chose to tag the company’s name after its original leader Edward Kingsford and the rest is picnic history! Really…who knew? Photo credit: Wikipedia by BARRY HORN Who Knew ? 38 | OCT - NOV - DEC 2017 ON A MISSION women-on-a-mission.com

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