Motor Maids Across The Continent

 

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Today in 1909: Alice Huyler Ramsey, of Hackensack New Jersey, becomes the first woman to drive across the United States. The children’s book “The Motor Maids Across The Continent” came out two years later, depicting the young women as riders and mechanics. – @amhistorymuseum (American History Museum at The Smithsonian)

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On June 9, 1909, in a rain drenched New York City, a crowd of wet photographers gathered at 1930 Broadway to snap pictures of an “automobile” and the four poncho-cloaked women within. The car itself was a dark-green, four-cylinder, 30-horsepower 1909 Maxwell DA, a touring car with two bench seats and a removable pantasote roof. But the cameras focused particular attention on the woman in the driver’s seat, 22-year-old Alice Ramsey. Just over five feet tall, with dark hair below her rubber helmet and visor, she posed until she could stand it no more; then she kissed her husband goodbye and cranked the motor to start the car’s engine. Off the Maxwell drove with a clank of tire chains, westward on a transcontinental crusade: the first all-female, cross-country road trip… READ THE FULL ARTICLE HERE.

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