Maryna Gutnyk, Krystian Leonard Chrzan

Maryna Gutnyk

PhD in History, associate professor, Ukrainian Studies, Culturology and History of Science department, National technical University «Kharkiv Polytechnic Institute».

ORCID: 0000-0002-2723-2755

Krystian Leonard Chrzan ,

D.Sc., professor, Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Wroclaw University of Science and Technology.

ORCID: 0000-0002-1316-6806

DOI: 10.17721/2522-4611.2019.39.17



Abstract. The formation of the automotive industry in Europe in the early twentieth century was considered. The data about car development in Great Britain, France and Germany is given. It was shown how the automobile racing influenced on the development of cars, in particular the transition from cars creation with a steam engine to cars creation with an internal combustion engine.

More and more people became interested in this type of transportation. It was shown that at that time in Europe there were many workshops where cars were developed by scientists-innovators. Among such pioneers of the car industry is to Beckman's family. The activity of this family starting from Paul Beckman to his son Otto Jr. and even his daughter Ilse is presented.

To date, it is extremely limited information about Beckmann's family contribution to the automotive industry in Europe. It was Paul Beckmann who started constructing cars in Wroclaw. At the factory which was founded by his father the production of both as small cars and as trucks and even sports was organized. It is noted that before the beginning of the World War I the most efficient cars developed a speed of up to 95 km/h. Beckmann's family cars became prize-winners of the international competitions of that time. It is stated that Paul Beckman can be considered the initiator of a safety belt. His cars were equipped with special leather straps.

It should be noted that the company successfully developed and had a dealer network in Germany, Poland and Russia.

During the interwar period, the company collapsed and was bought by a larger brand. However, Otto Jr., son of Paul Beckman, continued to take care of a family business. Today there is only one car with the mark of the Wroclaw car factory.

Keywords: automotive industry, Beckmann's family, Wroclaw, auto racing, Red Flag Act, K. Benz, G. Daimler, L. Serpollet.

Received by the editorial board: 11.10.2018


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