Monthly Archives: July 2020

C.R. Patterson – And why you should know who he is

Before the boom of Ford, there was C.R. Patterson. Many may not be familiar with his name, but he’s made significant contributions to the automotive industry. Born enslaved in 1833, Charles Richard Patterson was the first and only African American automaker who carved very substantial contributions to the automotive industry today. Patterson escaped the slave plantation and traveled to Greenfield, Ohio, to begin a new life. While in Ohio, he dedicated himself to learning blacksmithing skills and went to work for a carriage-making business. With time dedicated to the industry, he developed a professional partnership with J.P. Lowe, another local carriage manufacturer. Together, they ran a crafted horse-drawn carriage company for over 20 years. Patterson eventually bought out Lowe and was the sole proprietor, naming the business C.R. Patterson & Sons. Patterson’s carriages were top of the line, with exclusive carriages having sliding doors for their storm buggies. This innovative design ... read more