Our mission: To honor and celebrate the accomplishments of individuals in the international motor vehicle industry through awards and educational programs that challenge young and old alike to higher levels of personal achievement.
In 1903 ,  Dr. Horatio Nelson Jackson single handedly silenced a conversation taking place at the San Francisco University Club. “Fifty dollars says I can drive a car to New York.” This was quite a boast for a man without a car or mechanical knowledge. Yet the young retired doctor, along with a mechanical assistant and a dog ,  took up the challenge with only four days to purchase a car and a pack.
Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
Sixty-three days, 5,600 miles and $8,000 later, Jackson drove into New York City, becoming the first person to cross the United States in an automobile.
Among the Automotive Hall of Fame's celebrated alumni are the Fisher brothers, inducted in 1995. Charles Fisher was instrumental in establishing the Fisher Body Corporation and the Fisher Craftsman Guild. 

By 1914, the Fisher Body Company had become the largest auto-body manufacturer in the world, with 370,000 orders for customers such as Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, Ford, Oldsmobile, Packard and Studebaker. At its peak, the company employed more than 100,000 workers across 40 plants. After selling to GM in 1926, Charles became a vice president for the company and worked passionately for automotive innovation.
Photo courtesy of GM Heritage Center
Charles and Sarah Fisher’s legacy is still present in Detroit. The Charles Fisher mansion located in Detroit’s Boston Edison district, completed in 1922, became his primary residence. The Albert Kahn-designed art deco Fisher Building, complete with offices and a theater, opened in 1928. It was officially designated a historic landmark in 1989. The Fishers donated a significant amount to various charities, such as hospitals, schools and the Detroit Institute of Art. In 1929, they donated funds to re-build an infant foundling and maternity hospital, now known as the St. Vincent and Sarah Fisher Center. Today the center provides free educational programs, basic skill building and learning enhancement for at-risk children and adults.
The Body by Fisher badge - trademarked on July 10, 1923 - was found on GM cars all the way up to the 1990s. Founded in 1908 by 1995 Automotive Hall of Fame inductees Charles and Fred Fisher, the Fisher Body Company was the largest auto-body manufacturer in the world. The badge's use of the Napoleonic carriage was an indication of quality craftsmanship.
Photo courtesy of the Automotive Hall of Fame
2002 Automotive Hall of Fame inductee Richard Petty reigns as “The King” in NASCAR, winning 200 races, more than twice as many as any other driver.
Today, he is the owner of Richard Petty Racing. His team has earned the respect of a larger audience, as driver Bubba Wallace has been speaking in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. In solidarity, Petty redesigned the livery of his car complete with a peace sign.
Photo courtesy of the Automotive Hall of Fame
Petty recently said, “I stand shoulder to shoulder with Bubba, yesterday, today, tomorrow and every day forward.”

One of Petty's signature wool hats, along with his sunglasses, are on display at the Automotive Hall of Fame. These icons represent the soft-spoken gentleman who spoke loudly with his right foot. 
Social distancing with my parents has meant many family movie nights over the past few months. One of my favorite movies that we have watched is " Drive Like Andretti ," an NBC documentary on race car driver and 2005 Automotive Hall of Fame inductee Mario Andretti .

The documentary tells the story of a young Italian refugee who went on to become the only driver to win the Indy 500, Daytona 500, and Formula 1 World Championship.

In the film, Andretti shares stories of his childhood and career while visiting the streets where he first began racing, his current home in Pennsylvania, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and more.
Photo courtesy of NBC Sports
There are also appearances by several of his celebrity friends, like 2020/2021 Automotive Hall of Fame inductee Jay Leno .

Recently, I had the chance to sit in on a Zoom interview with Andretti and the Hall’s principle historian, Brian Baker. It was a surreal experience to interact with the same celebrity that I had just seen on NBC! We heard heartwarming stories about the Andretti family, as well as amazing tales of his racing career. "Drive Like Andretti" touches on several of these, and watching it is a great way for a racing fan to spend an evening!

- Automotive Hall of Fame Research and Museum Communications intern Shayla Croteau
Thank you to the Lawrence P. & Maria Elena Fisher Fund, the B.D. & J.E. McIntyre Foundation, and MotorCities National Heritage Area for sponsoring our 2019-2020 Lecture Series, which kicked off last fall with a presentation by Ford Vice President of Design Jack Telnack.

On July 16, our Principal Historian Brian Baker presented "Lightning Strikes Twice," featuring strikingly similar automotive designs from different companies.
Automotive Hall of Fame Principal Historian Brian Baker. Photo courtesy of the Automotive Hall of Fame.
The third lecture - "Electric Vehicle History: Recharged for the Future" - will be held on July 30 at 10 a.m. If you’re a student or young professional in the automotive industry, please visit our website for the Zoom link and meeting info.
I am happy to share that the Automotive Hall of Fame is open by appointment on selected dates this summer. With your reservation, you'll have intimate access to the Exhibit Hall featuring the stories of more than 150 individuals in the automotive industry, a film screening, and auto displays. Visit our website to make your reservation.

I 'd also like to invite you to participate in the MotorCities National Heritage Area Automobile Heritage Hunt on Aug. 1, which features a stop at the Automotive Hall of Fame. If you want to join the rally, you can sign up at the MotorCities website. We also invite you to visit the Hall that day by registering here . Cool cars are welcome!

If you'd like to visit us virtually, don't miss our next lecture series on July 30. Automotive Hall of Fame Principal Historian Brian Baker will discuss the past and future of electric vehicles.

I look forward to seeing you at the Hall soon, either in person or virtually!

Sarah Cook
Automotive Hall of Fame
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