CORPORATIONS: Just Between Ex-Friends

As Henry Ford's "only partner," Irish Inventor Harry Ferguson had done well. Ford produced Ferguson-designed tractors, and Harry Ferguson Inc. sold them, under an unwritten agreement based on "good faith and mutual confidence."

In all, Harry Ferguson Inc. sold $313 million worth of Ford-built tractors (and implements manufactured by 105 subcontractors), and in 1946 alone netted $4.3 million. It was young Henry Ford II who decided that his grandfather had got the short end of the Ferguson bargain. He canceled the deal, and set up his own Dearborn Motors Corp. to make and sell tractors and implements (TIME, July 21)....

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!