This Day in Financial History - January 5 . . .

1904 - Ransom Eli Olds retired from Olds Motor Works on this day. Olds had founded the company in 1899 with financial help from Samuel L. Smith, a lumber tycoon. Olds made the most profitable car in the early 1900s, the tiller-steered Oldsmobile Runabout. In 1904, Olds was approached by his head of engineering, Henry Leland, who had designed a lighter, more powerful engine that could improve the Runabout dramatically. Olds refused to use the new engine, to the dismay of his backer, Samuel Smith. Smith forced Ransom Olds out of the company. Olds went on to found the Reo Motor Car Company, and Oldsmobile went on without him. Henry Leland, the clever engineer, took his motor elsewhere: it powered the world's first Cadillac. Source:

1914 - The Ford Motor Company announces an eight-hour workday and a minimum wage of $5 for a day's labor. Source:

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