A new way to explore the history of the Ford Heritage Vault Company

Ford is creating historical photographs and product brochures of the first century of its existence available to the public online.

The automaker on Thursday announced the Ford Heritage Vault, which will include Ford and Lincoln branded products from Ford’s founding in 1903 to its centenary in 2003. The materials are available as free downloads for personal use, and the curated collection will continue to expand, Ford said in a press release.

The components selected for the launch of the online archive have been selected by Ford archivists over the past two years. They cover everything from classics like Model A and Bronco to less preferred models like Tempo and Aerostar.

Ford Heritage Vault

Ford Heritage Vault

The collection is from Ford’s Company Archives, founded in 1951 in anticipation of the company’s 50th anniversary. Now housed in a purpose-built facility at The Henry Ford Museum, they now include 16,000 cubic feet of paper records, about 51,000 video resources, about 2 million negatives, as well as hundreds of works of art, according to Ford.

To ensure accessibility, Ford incorporates assistive technology for blind and visually impaired users wherever possible. The company tested the website with Wayne State University library and information science graduate students as well as employees and retirees before launch.

Some bugs may still need to be worked out, however, we were unable to access the site at the time of publication. Still, it seems to be a great resource for car enthusiasts looking to explore Ford’s history. Most automakers have extensive corporate archives, but it is rare for an individual to make such content easily accessible to the public.

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