Savage/Witbro Family Tree:Information about Jonathan Dixon Maxwell
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Jonathan Dixon Maxwell (b. 1864, d. March 08, 1928)
Jonathan Dixon Maxwell (son of Joseph Maxwell and Nancy Patton)222 was born 1864 in Indiana222, and died March 08, 1928 in Tarrytown, Ny.He married Nora Cockley.
Notes for Jonathan Dixon Maxwell:
Jonathan Dixon Maxwell (Pioneer Motor Car Maker) 1864-1928
Jonathan Dixon Maxwell was born in Howard County Indiana in 1864 the son of Joseph and Nancy Maxwell. He was trained as a machinist in the railroad industry but was operating a bicycle repair shop with Elnier Apperson when he assisted him in building Elwood Haynes's first car in 1893 (now in the Smithsonian Institute). This partnership became the Northern Motor Car Company. Jonathan had also worked with Eli Olds in developing the Reo, later renamed, the Oldsmobile.
In 1903 he left the Northern Motor Car Company and joined with Benjamin Briscoe in founding the Maxwell-Briscoe Motor Company. Jonathan designed the first Maxwell car and using an existing plant at Tarrytown, New York, they started production on June 1904, building 532 Maxwell cars in the first year Their low priced, two cylinder runabouts were the first in America to have metal bodies and amongst the first to have shaft drive rather than the chain and sprocket drive derived from the bicycle. During his working career, Jonathan was to hold no less than 19 automotive patents. In 1907, a new plant was built at Newcastle Indiana, which is still part of Chrysler facilities in that city. By 1908, the Maxwell-Briscoe Motor Company was one of the four biggest auto-making companies in America along with Ford, Buick, Reo (Oldsmobile).
Manufacture of the two cylinder runabouts and larger four-cylinder cars continued until 1912 when their new, short-lived United States Motor Company, formed to rival General Motors Corporation, failed. Jonathan then split from Briscoe and went on to form the Maxwell Motor Corporation, financed by Walter Flanders, to build Maxwell cars. The Maxwell production plants included factories at Newcastle Indiana, Tarrytown New York, Pawtucket Rhode Island, Dayton and Highland Park in Detroit as well as facilities in Canada. The Maxwell Motor Company also leased the Chalmers Motor Company plant to augment their Highland Park facilities, both of which were needed by Maxwell to fill World War I government orders.
JDM at the wheel of a
By 1920 the Maxwell Motor Company, Inc., owed some $43,000,000 and was on the verge of bankruptcy. Walter P. Chrysler, who had retired as President of Buick and vice-president of General Motors, was asked to head-up a reorganisation committee, which arranged for the purchase of the combined assets of Maxwell and Chalmers and formed Maxwell Motor Corporation in May 1921. Chrysler became Chairman of the Board. The company continued to build the Chalmers car and an improved Maxwell car, advertised as the "Good Maxwell." In 1924 the Chalmers marque became Chrysler with the introduction of a totally new car, the Chrysler Six which was designed by three new engineers, Carl Breer, Owen Skelton, and Fred Zeder. The following year Chrysler changed the company name to the Chrysler Corporation and the Maxwell car became the Chrysler Four, the core of its engineering being used as a platform for the new Chrysler Plymouth of 1928.
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Died 2: 1928222