William Crapo Durant (December 8, 1861 – March 18, 1947) was a leading pioneer of the United States automobile industry, who created a system in which a company held multiple marques – each seemingly independent, with different automobile lines – bound under a unified corporate holding company.
Born in Boston, Massachusetts, Durant was the son of William...
From his holdings in Durant-Dort Carriage Company, Durant...
- General Motors
Utilising Buick as the base, along with a 15-year contract...
- General Motors
- Wall Street and Later Years
- Durant's Castle
- Further Reading
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Born in Boston, Massachusetts, Durant was the son of William Clark Durant and Rebecca Folger Durant (née Crapo), who was born to a wealthy Massachusetts family of French descent. His mother, Rebecca, was the daughter of Michigan governor Henry H. Crapo, who was also of French descent. William dropped out of high school to work in his grandfather's lumberyard. He started out as a cigar salesman in Flint, Michigan, and eventually founded his own carriage company. In 1886, Durant partnered with Josiah Dallas Dort and founded Flint Road Cart Company, eventually transforming $2,000 in start-up capital into a $2-million company with worldwide sales. By 1890, the Durant-Dort Carriage Company, based in Flint, had become a leading manufacturer of horse-drawn vehiclesand by the start of the 20th century, was the largest in the US. Durant was highly skeptical of automobiles, feeling that the bad smell of burnt fuel, along with the en...
From his holdings in Durant-Dort Carriage Company, Durant was a millionaire. On November 1, 1904 Durant assumed control of the troubled Buick Motor Company and used the financial and manufacturing resources of Durant-Dort to correct Buick's course. With Durant pushing and marketing the Buick name, the company was able to become the best-selling automobile in America, outperforming earlier leaders Ford Motor Company, Cadillac, and Oldsmobile, and despite having no manufacturing line and only a few extant cars, orders tallied over 1100 - all of this by the time of the 1905 New York Automobile Show. Durant and Samuel McLaughlin, McLaughlin's being the largest carriage manufacturer in Canada, signed a 15-year contract to build Buick power trains at cost-plus pricing.
Utilising Buick as the base, along with a 15-year contract for motors to be provided to R. S. McLaughlin, Durant envisioned the creation of a large automobile company, which would manufacture several independent marques and control subsidiary component-making companies, much as Durant-Dort had done for carriage- building with R S McLaughlin. On September 16, 1908, Durant and McLaughlin opened an escrow account, with which they founded General Motors Holding Company. They also exchanged a large amount of Buick stock for an equivalent amount of McLaughlin's eponymous company stock, making McLaughlin one of General Motors' biggest shareholders. On November 12, 1908 Durant purchased Olds Motor Works(Oldsmobile). Durant consolidated 13 car companies and 10 parts-and-accessories manufacturers under the new holding company's control in 1908. In 1909, Durant's GM bought Cadillac, and Oakland Motor Car(eventually re...
In the 1920s, Durant became a major "player" on Wall Street and on Black Tuesday joined with members of the Rockefeller family and other financial giants to buy large quantities of stocks, against the advice of friends, to demonstrate to the public their confidence in the stock market. His effort proved costly and failed to stop the market slide. By 1936, Durant was bankrupt. After the fall of Durant Motors, Durant and his second wife, Catherine Lederer Durant, lived on a pension provided by R. S. McLaughlin, and Messrs. Marr and Dupont as arranged by Alfred P. Sloan at $10,000.00 (worth approximately $173,000 in 2018's currency) a year on behalf of General Motors. He then opened a bowling alley/fast food restaurant in Flint, Michigan, working the kitchen in person. Durant predicted that family-friendly entertainment venues would be big business in the coming years and he hoped to expand to a chain of 30 bowling alleys. In 1942,...
During the late 1920s, Durant's son, Russell Clifford (Cliff) Durant and his third wife, Lea Gapsky Durant, started construction on a personal castle and private airstrip in Roscommon, Michigan, along the south branch of the Au Sable River. The 54-room mansion burned to the ground under mysterious circumstances on February 6, 1931. The Durants never inhabited it. Arson was suspected, allegedly at the hands of trade unionists, whom Durant had refused to recognize. After Lea's mysterious disappearance in 1934, and Cliff's death in 1937, Cliff's fourth wife, Charlotte Phillips Durant, sold the land to George W. Mason (of Nash Motors), an automotive executive. Upon his death, it was bequeathed to the State of Michigan as a nature preserve, the Mason Tract. All that remains of the castle and private airstrip are the old foundation works. Today, a canoe landing and short history of the castle are on the site.Pelfrey, William (2007). Billy, Alfred and General Motors. Amacom Publishing.Madsen, Axel (2000). The Deal Maker: How William C. Durant Made General Motors. Wiley Publishing.Gustin, Lawrence (2008). Billy Durant: Creator of General Motors. University of Michigan Press. ISBN 978-0-472-03302-7.Rae, John B. "The Fabulous Billy Durant." Business History Review (1958) 32#3: 255-271 online.
William C. Durant (1861–1947), industrialist and founder of General Motors Corporation William West Durant (1850–1934), architect and developer of camps in the Adirondack Great Camp style William A. Durant (1866–1948), American politician in Oklahoma This disambiguation page lists articles about people with the same name.
William C. Durant William Crapo "Billy" Durant, född 8 december 1861 i Boston i Massachusetts, död 18 mars 1947 i Flint i Michigan, var en amerikansk företagsledare inom bilindustrin. Han är mest känd som grundare av General Motors och Chevrolet.
Durant, along with Frederic L. Smith, co-founded General Motors, as well as Chevrolet with Louis Chevrolet. Read more on Wikipedia. Since 2007, the English Wikipedia page of William C. Durant has received more than 838,564 page views. His biography is available in 21 different languages on Wikipedia (up from 19 in 2019).
Little Motor Car Company was an automobile manufactured founded primarily by William H. Little and William C. Durant that operated from 1911 to 1913. After the Panic of 1910–11 and lack of cash from overexpansion that led to General Motors ' board to oust Durant, Durant began forming other car companies including Chevrolet and Mason Motors.
William C. Durant was born on December 8, 1861 (age 85) in Boston, Massachusetts, United States. He is a celebrity entrepreneur. He died on March 18, 1947, New York City, NY. He had 2 children Margery Durant, Cliff Durant.
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The first car was offered in 1900 with two body styles seating either two or four passengers with a single cylinder engine producing 6hp with a 62" wheelbase. The roadster was listed for US$750 ($23,331 in 2020 dollars ) By 1904 the Model 9 was the Elmore Convertible Runabout. Equipped with a tonneau, it could seat four passengers and sold for just US$850 ($24,483 in 2020 dollars ), making it one of the least-expensive vehicles on the market. The flat-mounted single-cylinder engine, situated at the center of the car, produced 6.5 hp (4.8 kW). A 2-speed transmission was fitted. The car weighed 1050 lb (476 kg). The Elmore Runabout was next in line. It could seat two passengers and sold for US$800 ($23,043 in 2020 dollars ). The vertically mounted Straight-twin engine, also situated at the center of the car, produced 8 hp (6 kW). A 3-speed transmission was fitted. The angle iron-framed car weighed 1400 lb (635 kg). The top model was the Elmore Tonneau. It could seat four passengers an...Frank Leslie's Popular Monthly(January, 1904)Clymer, Floyd. Treasury of Early American Automobiles, 1877-1925. New York: Bonanza Books, 1950.
Apr 19, 2021 · William C. Durant Wiki/Profile Name/Famous as William C. Durant Occupation Entrepreneur Born Boston, MA Country/Nationality MA Birthday December 8, 1861 Horoscope Sagittarius Died Mar 18, 1947 ( age 85) Other Name William, Durant William C. Durant Net Worth, Biography, Age, Height, body measurements, family, career, Income, Cars, Lifestyles & many more details.
William Crapo “Billy” Durant (1861–1947) was an American industrialist. A leading pioneer of the United States automobile industry, he was the co-founder of General Motors, one of the first and the largest corporations in the world. He also co-founded the home appliances company Frigidaire.