Take a leisurely drive via automotive historical past in Ford’s newly digitized archive

Ford is formally 119 years outdated, and in celebration, the Blue Oval is launching an internet archive so automobile fans can sift via its lengthy and storied previous.

The Ford Heritage Vault is a digital database that incorporates greater than 5,000 curated pictures and product brochures from Ford and Lincoln automobiles, spanning from the corporate’s founding in 1903 to its centennial in 2003.

The vault permits anybody to view and obtain the pictures for “private use, freed from cost,” Ford says. The automaker will replace the archive with extra automotive ephemera over time, so the vault will solely develop in dimension.

“We’re opening up in a approach we’ve by no means accomplished earlier than,” mentioned Ted Ryan, Ford archive and heritage model supervisor, in an announcement. “Our archives had been established 70 years in the past, and for the primary time, we’re opening the vault for the general public to see. That is only a first step for all that can come sooner or later.”

It took two years for Ford’s archives staff to gather all the fabric. The archive was piloted with the assistance of staff, retirees, and graduate college students from Wayne State College earlier than being opened as much as the general public.

There’s loads of nice stuff to dig via, together with a brochure for the 1961 Ford Falcon, full with cameos from Peanuts characters, together with Snoopy and Charlie Brown. You’ll additionally discover ads for a set of pre-Sizzling Wheels Ford toy vehicles and vehicles that “look and work like the true ones.” And my private favourite, the Ford Aerostar van idea from 1985. (Please, Ford, electrify this instantly.)

The database is searchable, that means Ford Mustang, F-150, and Bronco homeowners can return in time and discover early incarnations of their automobiles. Followers of defunct nameplates, like Meteor, Fairlane, Galaxie, Mannequin A, and Edsel, can even discover a treasure trove of fabric to kind via. Ford claims that one person discovered the Tempo fashions their mom and grandmother owned within the Eighties and ’90s.

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