Summer 1967

Page 74

Sixty years ago, when an impoverished mechanic was tinkering with an internal combustion engine for a horse¡ less carriage, he did not dream that he was engineering a social revolution. Henry Ford, as he worked in that Michigan barn, was simply trying to develop a reliable engine for a simple autocar. Nevertheless, more than an automobile came out of that barn. An outline Our mass production, inter¡ of new programs changeable parts, suburbia, of religious education texts and much of what we call the incorporating the insights twentieth century can in a true of Vatican II. sense turn to Henry and call him "grandpa." About the same time, the Wright bothers at Kitty Hawk pushed the first airplane off the ground. That + plane flew but a few hundred feet; nevertheless, it launched GERARD P. WEBER man into the air. When within the next few years the astronauts land on the moon, the + spirits of Orville and Wilber will be standing next to them surprised and bewildered by what they wrought. Scoffers at Henry Ford and the early automobile cried in derision, "Get a horse." Pedants and preachers looking at the efforts of the Wright brothers solemnly assured the nation 187


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