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120 years on and nothing much has changed in Automobiles since 1900

Lizzy Jones Motoring in 1900

A Motor Car

Below is a journalists description of a 1900 automobile. This article was in the Evening Star, Boulder, West Australia, Tuesday 28 August 1900. Very little appears to have changed in automobile since!

Motoring in the early 1900's | carmanualsdirect

Motoring in the early 1900's - an experience remembered for life

The motor is harmless to look at, but it seems to be restless when it has to stand still, and makes a low moaning all the time as if it felt bad inside. A large crowd gathered round it as we got in; they were all telling one another to be careful and not go too near in case it exploded (sounds like today electric cars!).

The driver told us that there were, five brakes, and that no accident could possibly occur unless 25 complications arose, and in addition somebody put a match to something; nevertheless, at first, we were too busy placing our trust in Providence to enjoy the novelty.

The machinery of the motor is coiled up serpent-like beneath the seats, so that in addition to putting our trust above we had to place it below as well. No matter how fast the vehicle goes the motion never seems much to those inside. From the street it seems to skim along out-distancing busses, and electric trams; even the perspiring bicyclist with his head on a level with the front wheel is left behind by that little horseless Victoria.

As we moved along we seemed to have advanced a century ahead of the rest of the street; the horses had quite an antediluvian look, and the busses looked like Noah's Arks; the faces of riders and pedestrians flashed back on us admiringly, till we felt as if we had invented the thing ourselves. The motor is an animal with many voices. Till you get on him he wails and jumps; once started he moves contentedly enough, only making a low continual grrr-grrr, which to the people outside has somewhat a cricket-like sound. When you want to move admiring people out of the track, you squeeze a squirt, and a horrible noise, something between a midnight cat and a foghorn, causes to fall under a tram the small boy who has just remarked 'Ere's a kerridge bolted from its 'orses.' The most original thing about the motor consists in the remarks it makes to itself when you compel it to remain still a minute or two. Its curses are low but deep. I don't know exactly how to work the cursing apparatus yet, but l am going to learn.

Article from Evening Star, Boulder, West Australia, Tuesday 28 August 1900

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