Carl Fisher

Carl FisherCarl Fisher

 

Location: 150 Courthouse Square, Greensburg, IN 46240 (Decatur County, Indiana)

Installed 2014 Indiana Historical Bureau, GoGreensburg, and the City of Greensburg

ID#: 16.2014.1

Text

Fisher, an entrepreneur who helped make automobiles a viable form of transportation, was born in Greensburg, 1874. He co-founded Prest-O-Lite Co., 1904, which developed acetylene gas vehicle headlights distributed nationwide. Co-founder and president of Indianapolis Speedway, site of famous annual 500 mile race and testing ground for new automobile technology.

Proponent of the Good Roads Movement to expand and improve the nation's road networks. Fisher advocated construction of U.S. transcontinental roads including east-west Lincoln Highway (1912) and north-south Dixie Highway (1914). Such roads enabled long-distance travel by automobile. He also developed Miami Beach into major resort destination. Died July 15, 1939.

Annotated Text

Fisher, an entrepreneur1 who helped make automobiles a viable form of transportation, 2 was born in Greensburg, 1874.3 He co-founded Prest-O-Lite Co., 1904, which developed acetylene gas vehicle headlights distributed nationwide.4 Co-founder and president of Indianapolis Speedway,5 site of famous annual 500 mile race 6 and testing ground for new automobile technology.7

Proponent of the Good Roads Movement to expand and improve the nation's road networks.8 Fisher advocated construction of U.S. transcontinental roads including east-west Lincoln Highway (1912)9 and north-south Dixie Highway (1914).10 Such roads enabled long-distance travel by automobile.11 He also developed Miami Beach into major resort destination. 12 Died July 15, 1939.13

 

All newspaper articles accessed NewspaperArchive.com unless otherwise noted.

[1] "The Vehicle Trade," The Indianapolis Journal, May 26, 1901, 20, accessed Chronicling America ; Indianapolis Sun, November 2, 1901 "Another Indianapolis Automobile," The Hub 51: 5 (August 1909): 172, accessed GoogleBooks; "Fisher, Carl G.," R. L. Polk & Co.'s Indianapolis City Directory for 1909 (Indianapolis: R. L. Polk & Co, 1909), 504, accessed Archive.org; Advertisement, Indianapolis Star, January 23, 1910; "Incorporations," Aeronautics 6: 1 (January 1910): 98-99, accessed GoogleBooks ; "Articles of Association of Fisher Automobile Company," Commentaries on the Law of Private Corporations 7 (Indianapolis: The Bobbs-Merrill Company, 1910), 63-65, accessed GoogleBooks ; "Articles of Association of the Fisher-Gibson Company," August 17, 1911, Series 1: Ledgers and Minute Books, Gibson Company Records, 1898-1998, Indiana Historical Society; "Minutes of Special meeting of Board of Directors of Fisher-Gibson Company," April 1, 1912, Fisher-Gibson Company Minute Book, Series 1, Gibson Company Records, 1898-1998, Indiana Historical Society; "Carl Fisher's Great Energy," American Motorist 5:4 (April 1913): 301 accessed Googlebooks ; "Carl G. Fisher & Co.," R. L. Polk & Co.'s Indianapolis City Directory for 1913 (Indianapolis: R. L. Polk & Co, 1913), 1797, accessed Archive.org; "The Trucktor-A New Type of Tractor," Automotive Industries 37: 22 (November 29, 1917): 958, accessed GoogleBooks ; "Utilitor is Basis of Reorganization," Automobile Topics 58:4 (June 12, 1920): 419, accessed GoogleBooks ; 1920 United States Census, Miami Beach, Dade County, Florida, roll 323, page 39, line 73, accessedAncestryLibrary; "Fisher Plans to build Miami of the North," Gastonia [North Carolina] Daily Gazette, September 22, 1925, 1; 1930 United States Census, Miami Beach, Dade County, Florida, roll 311, page 6B, line 90, accessed AncestryLibrary; Richard Harmond, "Progress and Flight: An Interpretation of the American Cycle Craze of the 1890s," Journal of Social History 5:2 (Winter 1971-1972), 237, 250-252, accessed JSTOR; Glory-June Greiff, "Bicycling," in David J. Bodenhamer and Robert Barrows, eds., Encyclopedia of Indianapolis (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1994), 320; Mark S. Foster, Castles in the Sand: The Life and Times of Carl Graham Fisher (Gainesville: University of Florida, 2000), 14-17, 63.

In 1913, the American Motorist described Carl Fisher as a "World-maker" who "builds houses, factories, homes, skyscrapers, telegraph and telephone lines, and is interested in every human activity, great and small." From bicycle sales and car racing to road construction and real estate development Fisher was an avid entrepreneur who excelled at juggling multiple projects at once. Always looking for the next exciting enterprise, Fisher rarely focused on a single business venture.

In 1904, Fisher bought part interest in a patented process to store acetylene gas; Fisher and his partners formed Prest-O-Lite Company to manufacture and sell automobile headlights. In 1909, Fisher helped found the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to host automobile races. For more information on Fisher's role in the Motor Speedway, see footnotes 5, 6, and 7. He later took on a leadership role in establishing the Lincoln and Dixie transcontinental highways (see footnotes 9 and 10), before turning his attention to real estate development in Miami, Florida and Montauk, Long Island, New York (see footnote 12). By 1920, Carl Fisher had officially retired (passport application) but remained in the "real estate business" as confirmed by the 1920 and 1930 censuses.

[2] "Indianapolis," The Wheel, September 9, 1892, accessed GoogleBooks; Indianapolis Sun, February 11, 1893; "Off at Springfield," Columbus Weekly Herald, June 16, 1893,5; Indianapolis Sun, March 8, 1897; "Everyone Can Ride," Indianapolis Sun, February 26, 1900 ; "Cycling," Outing, 35:6 (March 1900), 641, accessed GoogleBooks ; "The Vehicle Trade," The Indianapolis Journal, May 26, 1901, 20, accessed Chronicling America ; Indianapolis Sun, November 2, 1901; Indianapolis Sun, November 9, 1901; "Indianapolis Will Have Twice As Many Automobiles Next Year," Indianapolis Sun, November 14, 1901; "Incorporated," Indianapolis Sun, December 13, 1901; The Horseless Age 10: 8 (August 20, 1902): 204, accessed GoogleBooks; "Cycle Dealers Who are Handling Automobiles Successfully," Cycle and Automobile Trade Journal 7:11 (May 1, 1903): 36, accessed GoogleBooks ; International Motor Cyclopaedia, 1908-1909 (New York: E.E. Schwarzkopf, 1908): 190, accessed GoogleBooks ; 1910 United States Census, Indianapolis, Center Township, Marion County, roll T624_367, page 5A, line 1, accessed AncestryLibrary; "Visitors from afar Will See Big Race," Indianapolis Sun, November 19, 1910; "Charles C. Hildebrand Retires," Automobile Topics 65:2 (March 25, 1922): 474, accessed GoogleBooks ; "3-Time Winner Wilbur Shaw Speedway Great," Terre Haute Star, May 21, 1958, 19; "Ownership," Indianapolis Motor Speedway: Henry Ford and the IMS Founders, accessed IndianapolisMotorSpeedway.com; Clifton J. Phillips, Indiana in Transition: The Emergence of an Industrial Commonwealth, 1880-1920 (Indianapolis: 1968), 310-11.

Like many early automobile proprietors, Fisher got his start in the bicycle sales and repairs business. The introduction of the "safety," or two wheeled bicycle, in the mid 1880s ignited American interest in cycling as a form of recreation and transportation. Fisher embraced the fad and helped form a local Indianapolis club for wheelmen called the Zig Zag Club, through which he participated in races and other cycling events. Fisher established himself as a prominent Indianapolis entrepreneur when he and his brother opened a bicycle shop in the city in the late 1800s called Carl G. Fisher & Co. According to a 1901 article in the Indianapolis Journal, the shop later sold motorcycles and automobiles as well.

In Indiana, the number of bicycle manufacturers reached its highest level in 1899; but by 1904, the industry had practically disappeared. Fisher's interests changed with popular opinion as well. The young entrepreneur began dabbling in the fledgling automobile business as early as 1898 when he and his brother established the Fisher Automobile Company. Although the 1900 census marked his primary profession as "bicycle dealer," it is clear that by 1901 Fisher was phasing out his bicycle products and turning his full attention to automobiles and their accompanying accessories. For example, a November 9, 1901 Indianapolis Sun article quoted Fisher as stating, "I'm going to pay mighty little attention to the bicycle business, next season. I think I shall order just three wheels." The November 14, 1901 Indianapolis Sun article indicated, "The H.T. Hearsey company and Fisher & Co., both of whom have always been extensive dealers in bicycles, have practically given up the wheel business." The Fisher Automobile Company was officially incorporated in 1901, and by 1910, Fisher appeared in the census as an automobile manufacturer.

Fisher believed automobiles had the potential to become a viable form of everyday transportation that would provide American citizens with greater freedom of mobility. He tirelessly promoted the automobile industry and supported business ventures that improved the quality of automobile travel. Although he owned his own dealership, Fisher Automobile Company, and invested money in several automobile manufacturers, Fisher focused his initial efforts on overcoming public skepticism over the automobile, rather than promoting a certain manufacturer or type of car. According to a 1901 Indianapolis Journal article, Fisher explained that "in spite of the every-day demonstrations made on our streets and surrounding roads of the practical uses to which automobiles can be subjected, there yet remains considerable missionary work to be done before people who have become interested will be induced to purchase." In a November 1901 Indianapolis Sun article, Fisher stated: "Right now, some competition in the automobile business would be a good thing. What we want now, is to get people interested in automobiles, not in some particular kind."

Through the creation of the Prest-O-Lite Company, Fisher helped to improve the safety and the visibility of automobile travel by providing a more reliable light source for vehicle headlights than the kerosene headlights most often used in early automobile models. (See footnote 4 for more information on Prest-O-Lite). Races at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway demonstrated to spectators the speed, reliability, and endurance of automobiles, while the track itself served as a testing ground for the latest technological advances in the industry. These included enhancements to speed, engine performance, and safety features that would later be included in automobiles for the mass market. (See footnotes 5-7 for more information on the speedway).

[3] 1880 United States Census , Greensburg, Decatur County, Indiana, roll 273, page 497D, line 4, accessed AncestryLibrary;1900 United States Census, Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana, roll 389, page 6A, line 37, accessed AncestryLibrary; 1910 United States Census; Form for a Native Citizen, "Carl G. Fisher," February 15, 1918, U.S. Passport Applications, 1795-1925, roll 471, M1490, page 5755, accessedAncestryLibrary; Registration Card, "Carl Graham Fisher," September 9, 1918, Marion County, Indiana, U.S. World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918, roll 1653565, accessed AncestryLibrary ; "Carl G. Fisher," Photograph of Grave, Crown Hill Cemetery, Indianapolis, Indiana, accessed Find-A-Grave.

According to his WWI draft card and a 1918 passport application, Carl G. Fisher was born on January 12, 1874 in Greensburg, Indiana. His birth date is corroborated by several census records from 1880, 1900, and 1910. Additionally, the date is confirmed by Fisher's gravestone in Crown Hill Cemetery, Indianapolis.

 

[4] Percy Avery, 1904, Acetylene-Gas Generator, U.S. Patent 760,723, filed December 15, 1900, and issued May 24, 1904, accessed GoogleScholar ; Advertisement, The Motor World 13: 10 (August 1906): 478, accessed GoogleBooks ; "Fire Causes Suit," Indianapolis Sun, September 7, 1907, 5; "Prest-O-Lite Plant Damaged By Fire," Logansport Daily Tribune, December 21, 1907, 3; "Many are Injured by an Explosion," Connersville Times, June 3, 1908; "Prest-O-Lite Blast," Goshen Democrat , June 9, 1908, 1; "South-Siders on Trail of City Council," Indianapolis Sun, June 11, 1908, 4; "PrestoLite to Fight Ordinance," Indianapolis Sun, June 16, 1908; Prest-O-Lite Co. v. Avery Portable Lighting Co. et al, Circuit Court, E. D. Wisconsin, September 15, 1908 in The Federal Reporter 164 (St. Paul: West Publishing Co., 1909), 60-61, accessed GoogleBooks ; "Lively Promoting Factor for Acetylene," Acetylene Journal 15: 2, (August 1913): 56, accessed GoogleBooks ; "Prest-O-Lite Again Dons War Paint to Meet Avery," Motor World Wholesale 37 (November 27, 1913): 8, accessed GoogleBooks ; "Officers Injured When Tire Bursts," Princeton Daily Democrat, July 23, 1914, 1; Pamphlet, "Confidential Dealers' Prices" (Indianapolis: The Prest-O-Lite Co., Inc., 1914), Manuscripts Division, Indiana State Library; "Official Distributors of Prest-O-Lite," Wabash Plain Dealer, December 8, 1917, 2; "Prest-O-Lite Company, Incorporated" in Burnham's Manual of Chicago Securities, 1917, James J. Fitzgerald, ed. (Chicago: John Burnham & Co., 1917), 384-386, accessed GoogleBooks ; "Union Carbide and Carbon Corporation" in Burnham's Manual of Chicago Securities, 1918, James J. Fitzgerald, ed. (Chicago: John Burnham & Co., 1918), 501, accessed GoogleBooks ; Victor W. Pagé, The Model T Ford Car Truck and Tractor Conversion Sets (New York: The Norman W. Henley Publishing Company, 1919), 300-302, accessed GoogleBooks ; Foster, Castles in the Sand, 46-49, 56.

According to a 1909 legal case, Percy Avery invented a revolutionary method for storing acetylene gas, which he perfected for sale in September 1904. Avery sold two-thirds of the patent to Fisher and his business partner James A. Allison on September 6, 1904, thus establishing the Prest-O-Lite Company. Avery was also a founding member of Prest-O-Lite, but withdrew from the company in 1906. Prest-O-Lite manufactured cylinders of compressed acetylene gas that were chiefly used to fuel automobile headlights. According to Fisher biographer, Mark S. Foster, early automobiles were often equipped with kerosene or carbide gas headlights that gave off dim light and were easily extinguished by wind or rain. With Prest-O-Lite headlamps, motorists could control the flow of gas, and therefore the brightness of the beam, with the turn of a key. The consistent flow of gas created a steady, wind-resistant flame. Foster also asserts that the company's success lay in its "fast, dependable service" in replacing cylinders, even providing overnight deliveries in some areas of the United States.

Due to the volatile nature of the gases produced at the plants, Prest-O-Lite factories were prone to fires and devastating explosions. The explosions generated some negative press, and many questioned the safety of maintaining a volatile gas plant in such a densely populated area. However, Prest-O-Lite plants remained in Indianapolis and profits continued to soar. In 1912, the company built a factory on the outskirts of town near the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

According to a 1913 issue of the Acetylene Journal, over 600,000 of the nearly one million vehicles on the market at the time had the Prest-O-Lite acetylene system installed. The journal emphasized that Prest-O-Lite headlights were "…recognized by automobile manufacturers everywhere as not only the solution of all lighting problems, but also as the means of increasing the sale of motor cars, by the new possibilities for pleasure it offered." By 1913, the company had also grown to include 34 branch offices, 16 manufacturing plants, and a customer base that spanned the United States, Canada, Japan, Australia, and other parts of Europe and Asia. Burnham's Manual of Chicago Securities identified Prest-O-Lite as "the largest distributor of prepared acetylene in the world" in 1917. Prest-O-Lite catapulted Fisher and Allison into a position of prominence in the automobile industry and earned the initial fortune that Fisher would invest in future automotive enterprises and other business ventures. In 1917, the Prest-O-Lite Co. merged with the newly-formed Union Carbide and Carbon Corporation. Union Carbide and Carbon Corporation was incorporated on November 1, 1917 to encompass several independent companies.

[5] "The Machine Broke," West Baden Springs Journal, March 31, 1902; "Automobile Races," Hagerstown Exponent, June 26, 1902; "World's Track Automobile Records," Salt Lake [Utah] Tribune, December 18, 1904, 4, accessed Chronicling America ; "Five-Mile Racing Course to be Built," Indianapolis Morning Star, December 7, 1905, 6, accessedfirstsuperspeedway.com; "Indianapolis to Have Auto Show,"Indianapolis Sunday Star, February 18, 1906, 1, accessedfirstsuperspeedway.com; "Auto Speedway Ready Soon,"Goshen Daily Democrat, July 19, 1908; "An Intimate View of Race Drivers," New York Times, October 25, 1908, 4 accessed Proquest; "Auto Racing Course to Be Established," Indianapolis Sun, January 7, 1909; "Motor Speedway to Be Best in World," Indianapolis Star, February 7, 1909, accessed firstsuperspeedway.com; "Motorcycle Race Certain," Indianapolis Star, February 21, 1909; Deed of Sale, "Carl G. Fisher, et al, to Indianapolis Motor Speedway Co.," March 29,1909, Filed April 6, 1909, Deed Record 6080, page 149, Marion County Recorder Office, submitted by applicant; "Motor Speedway Begins to Take Form; Army of Workmen Race Against Time," Indianapolis Sun, May 14, 1909, 7; "Fastest Cars and Most Daring Drivers in the Country Will Compete,"New York Times, August 15, 1909, 4 accessed Proquest; "Motor Speedway Opening,"New York Times, August 19, 1909, 5 accessed Proquest; "Long Race to Strang," Washington Post, August 21, 1909, 7; "Last Day of Auto Race Meet," Brownsville Daily Herald, August 21, 1909, 1; "Five World's Records Melt," Indianapolis News, August 21, 1909, p. 1; "Lincoln Highway Founder Serving U.S. Government," Honolulu [Hawaii] Star-Bulletin, October 20, 1917, 1, accessed Chronicling America ; "Annual 500-Mile Race Will Go On," Brazil [IN] Daily Times, June 12, 1923, 3; "Rickenbacker is Chief," Valparaiso Vidette Messenger, September 2, 1927, 5; "Rickenbacker Heads New Speedway Firm," Linton Daily Citizen, September 2, 1927, 1;"Eddie Rickenbacker to Try Comeback on Track," Lowell Sun, November 10, 1927, 11; "Air Route Marked Out," Automotive Industries 37: 23 (December 6, 1917): 1027, accessed GoogleBooks ; "Skip Looks Over His Left Shoulder," Indianapolis News, May 23, 1937, 10, accessed firstsuperspeedway.com; Foster, Castles in the Sand, 73-75.

At the start of the twentieth century, Fisher participated briefly in automobile racing. While racing a test car in 1906, Fisher complained that there was not even two miles of continuously smooth road in the U.S. on which to test race cars. Fisher wrote about this experience in a 1937 letter to the Indianapolis News: "I could see that it was a lack of being able to test the cars over a continuous speed run; and I made up my mind then to build a speedway where cars could be run 1,000 miles in a test, if necessary."

While Fisher's vision for an Indianapolis race track appeared in newspaper articles as early as 1905, his plans did not reach fruition until four years later. In 1909, Carl G. Fisher teamed up with three business partners--James A. Allison, Frank H. Wheeler, and Arthur C. Newby-to found the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Company. Fisher, president of the new company, and his business partners purchased a plot of land on the outskirts of Indianapolis and officially transferred ownership to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Company on March 29, 1909. This tract of land and several adjoining lots became the building site for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Fisher remained president of the Indianapolis Speedway Company until 1923, at which time he resigned and James Allison was elected president. In 1927, he and his business partners sold the majority interest of the track to a group of investors from Detroit. WWI pilot and former race car driver, Eddie Rickenbacker assumed the presidency, though Allison and Fisher still retained a minority interest in the company and continued to serve as members of the board.

 

[6] "Motor Matters," London [England] Standard, May 28, 1909, 6; "Demon of Speed Will Run Riot; Drivers Risk Life and Limb," Indianapolis News, April 16, 1910, Indiana State Library, microfilm; "Aviation Meeting Artistic Success," Indianapolis Star, June 19, 1910, 9; "Indianapolis Motor Speedway," Galveston [Texas] Daily News, January 1, 1911, 11; "Fortune for Victors," Logansport Pharos Tribune, February 27, 1911, 2; "Speedway Race is Magnet for Fans," Indianapolis Star, May 28, 1911; "[Illegible] Spreads to Coast," Indianapolis Star, May 28, 1911; "Indianapolis Speedway Scene of Two Deaths," Lethbridge [Alberta, Canada] Herald, May 30, 1911, 5; "Death List is Very Low," Fort Wayne Sentinel, May 31, 1911, 1; "Fatal Motor Race," London [England] Standard, May 31, 1911, 9; "Handling 90,000 at the Speedway," Indianapolis News, May 31, 1911, 12, accessed firstsuperspeedway.com;"Stutz Driver Wears Smile While Speeding," Laurel Review, May 15, 1912; "Foreign Drivers for Next Speedway Race," New York Times, June 2, 1912, X15, accessed Proquest;"Great Interest in Five Century," Winnipeg Free Press, February 1, 1913, 24; Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce, Pamphlet, "Indianapolis motor speedway; announcement of the third annual 500-mile international sweep stakes races, for cash prizes of $50,000.00," May 30, 1913, Manuscripts Division, Indiana State Library; "L'Industrie Francaise en Amérique," Paris [France] L Atro, February 7, 1914, 2; "Foreign Auto Drivers at Speedway," New York Times, May 21, 1914, 13, accessed Proquest; "Record Time on Speedway,"New York Times, May 27, 1914, 13, accessed Proquest; "Auto Racing," The [Kingston, Jamaica] Gleaner, June 5, 1914, 14; "Indianapolis Revives 500-Mile Race," Automobile Topics 43: 6 (September 16, 1916): 541, accessed googlebooks.com ; "Track Plant for War Work to Sell Cars-Other Speedways Not Affected," The Automobile 36:13, (March 29, 1917): 1, accessed GoogleBooks ; "Allies in Speedway Race," New York Times, December 22, 1918, 25, accessed Proquest;"World Events Told In Pictures to Readers of the Gleaner," The [Kingston, Jamaica] Daily Gleaner, June 19, 1925, 1; "Romance Rode with Victor of Recent Indianapolis Race," The China Press, July 5, 1931, B2, accessed Proquest; Jerry M. Fisher, The Pacesetter: The Untold Story of Carl G. Fisher (Fort Bragg, CA: Lost Coast Press, 1998), 54-59; "Indianapolis 500 Race Winners," Race and All-Time Stats, accessed IndianapolisMotorSpeedway.com.

The first motor races were held in August 1909, as a three day meet with shorter races leading up to a race of 250 miles the first day, 100 miles the second day, and culminating in a 300 mile race on the final day. Beginning in the summer of 1911, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway introduced a 500 mile race which became the track's main event that has run on Memorial Day weekend nearly every year since the inaugural race. See also Indiana State Historical Marker 49.1975.2 The Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The Indianapolis 500 mile race in 1911 was predicted to be "the biggest automobile race of the decade." The Indianapolis Star, May 28, 1911, further described the great interest the event held for people all over the U.S.: "The people are keen to realize that the contest is to tell of the qualities of the cars. . . ." Additional important features of the race would include not only the winner and his car but reports about "the strain on the masses watching the grueling contest and the terrific test on human nature, as exhibited by the drivers." According to Rich Taylor in 75 Years of Racing, "racing in the Indianapolis 500 International Sweepstakes became not only the pinnacle of a driver's career, but a legitimate year-round business."

 

[7] "Five World's Records Melt," Indianapolis News, August 21, 1909, 1; "Demon of Speed Will Run Riot; Drivers Risk Life and Limb,"Indianapolis News, April 16, 1910; "Drivers Preparing for Banner Event," Indianapolis Star, May 14, 1911, 22; Advertisement, The American Review of Reviews (July 1911): 63, 65, accessed GoogleBooks ; Advertisement, Saturday Evening Post 184: 3 (July 15, 1911): 1, accessed GoogleBooks ; "French Driver in Race," Monon News, May 2, 1913; Advertisement, Motor 24: 5 (August 1915): 40, accessed GoogleBooks ; "Track Plant for War Work…," The Automobile 36:13 (March 29, 1917): 1 accessed Googlebooks ; "Sixteen Valves Feature Races," Indianapolis Star, May 30, 1919, 20; "High Gear Car Goes Through Strenuous Run," Indianapolis Sun, November 19, 1920; "1911 Model Reo Won Hill-Climbing Event," Indianapolis Sun, November 19, 1920; "'First Big Race' is Treat to Schwab," Indianapolis Star, June 1, 1923, 12; "Smallest Motors Ever Built Will Race at Indianapolis," New York Times, December 6, 1925, 4 accessed Proquest; "Testing Ground for Automotive Improvements," Kokomo Tribune, May 24, 1928, 4; "Skip Looks Over His Left Shoulder," Indianapolis News, May 23, 1937, 10, accessed firstsuperspeedway.com; "'500' More than Just Auto Race," Logansport Pharos Tribune, July 5, 1964, 7.

In addition to providing entertainment to automobile enthusiasts, early automobile races in the U.S., including those at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, provided the nation's manufacturers with an opportunity to test the reliability of their products in various conditions. Automobile manufacturers also benefitted from entering races because these contests provided companies with an opportunity to demonstrate the capabilities of their vehicles to the public, boosting sales. The companies often used the race results in their advertising to emphasize the proven superiority of their products. Automobile manufacturers from around the world also used the races to test and display new designs in automobile engines and the aerodynamics of the body design. Manufacturers at early races included Benz (German), Ford (Detroit, MI), Peugeot (French), Stoddard-Dayton (Indianapolis, IN), Fiat (Italian), and Marmon (Indianapolis, IN).

Before the races each year, newspapers announced the drivers and their cars, highlighting the new technologies to be featured at the competition. For example, Ray Harroun, winner of the Speedway's first 500 mile race, was the only driver to use a rearview mirror in the 1911 races, an apparatus that would later become standard equipment on all automobiles. According to a 1919 article in the Indianapolis Star, after Jules Goux won the 500 mile race in 1913 with a sixteen valve four cylinder motor, the standard eight valve, four cylinder motor was abandoned in future models. In 1923, steel magnate Charles M. Schwab stated in a June 1 Indianapolis Star article, "I don't know of another industry in the world that has an institution like the Speedway . . . No wonder the motor car has made such vast strides in engineering and designing." A 1928 Kokomo Tribune article declared the Indianapolis Speedway a "Testing Ground for Automotive Improvements," and announced the latest technology to be tested that year in the 500 mile race was an improvement on the front wheel drive. Looking back on his achievements in 1937, Fisher noted: "The tire people got a lot of information and experience from the speedway, and the manufacturers, engineers and everybody interested in all parts of the automobile, learned something from the speedway tests…and undoubtedly it continues to give experience and information to automobile manufacturers…"

In 1964, several automotive companies expressed the benefits of competing in the Indy 500 to the Logansport Pharos Tribune. The president of the Firestone Tire and Rubber Co. stated, "Our participation in the Indianapolis 500 has been of immense benefits in terms of safer, more dependable tires. The race track is a great proving ground for tires and other automotive products where the most extreme demands possible are made on vehicle components."

[8] "Interest in Good Roads Convention," New York Times, August 15, 1909, 4 accessed ProQuest; "Road Problems Interest Many of the States," Indianapolis Sun, August 23, 1909, p. 4; "Auto Speedway from St. Joe to Indianapolis," Benton Harbor News Palladium, January 20, 1910, p. 8; "Auto Notes," Des Moines [Iowa], January 29, 1910, p. 12; "Ask Fisher to Make Good," Logansport Daily Tribune, July 28, 1910, p. 9; "Good Roads Congress at Indianapolis," Daviess County Democrat, November 19, 1910, 1; "Good Roads Fund Launched at $1,000," Richmond Morning News, October 1, 1911, p. 1; W.H. Blodgett, "Indiana's Bad Road System," South Bend Tribune, September 9, 1912, p. 6; "Lincoln Highway Now Incorporated," South Bend Tribune, July 8, 1913, p. 4; "Promote Campaign for Better Roads," South Bend Tribune, October 22, 1914, p. 9; Ewing Galloway, "Lincoln Highway Monument to Carl Fisher," Indianapolis Star, January 4, 1915, p. 8 ; "Permanent Highway will Solve Road Problem," South Bend Tribune, August 14, 1915, p.11; "Commission to Select Dixie Highway Route," Indianapolis News, April 5, 1915, p. 7; Austin F. Bement, "Lincoln Highway Progress Rapid During Second Year," New York Times, November 7, 1915, accessed Proquest; "Government Use of the New Dixie Highway. . . ." Indianapolis News, January 5, 1918, p. 18; "Big Road Improvements," New York Times, January 13, 1918, p. XX2 accessed ProQuest; Peter J. Hugill, "Good Roads and the Automobile in the United States 1880-1929," Geographical Review, 71 (July 1982): 328 accessed JSTOR; William Kaszynski, The American Highway: The History of Roads and Culture in the United States (Jefferson, N.C., 2000), 21, 27, 30; Clifton J. Phillips, Indiana in Transition: The Emergence of an Industrial Commonwealth, 1880-1920 (Indianapolis: 1968), 260-270.

The Good Roads Movement emerged in the late nineteenth century, when Americans began to "put great value on individual mobility" and urban dwellers sought getaways in the country first by bicycle and then automobile, technologies which had improved and made greater mobility possible. Roads, however, remained unimproved. By the 1880s, Indiana road supervision was controlled by local governmental entities. Construction and improvement was financed by taxing nearby property owners. Road repair and maintenance was performed by local able-bodied men who were required to work on the roads for two to four days per year. In 1912, the South Bend Tribune reported that Indiana roads were mostly bad, hindering and isolating rural residents and farmers. A 1914 South Bend Tribune article explained that the State of Indiana took no responsibility for its roads and noted that the question of a state highway department was hotly debated.

Bicycle enthusiasts organized the League of American Wheelmen in 1880, reaching over 70,000 members by 1897; a main priority was promoting better roads. By 1904 there were 2.14 million miles of roads, but 1.9 million miles were dirt roads. Thus, bicycle organizations and automobile touring clubs lobbied for the construction of new and improved roads. As a bicycle and automobile enthusiast, Fisher shared in these groups' support of road improvement. Newspapers identified Fisher with the Good Roads Movement as early as 1909, though at this time he focused mainly on state and local road projects. Fisher's home state contained few passable roads and possessed an inadequate infrastructure for funding road construction and maintenance. Fisher hoped to change such poor road conditions in his home state, and eventually across the nation.

In newspaper articles, Fisher was referred to as the "good roads man of Indiana" and many articles wrote about his state-level efforts to improve roads in Indiana. For example, Fisher donated money and materials to build a highway connecting Plymouth, IN, South Bend, IN, and St. Joseph, MI, though his intentions were somewhat self-centered. Fisher had a summer home in St. Joseph, MI, and stood to benefit greatly from a smoother road to his vacation spot. In 1912, Fisher's support of nationwide road improvement and his idea to build an east-west transcontinental road came to the forefront of his efforts on behalf of the Good Roads Movement. Fisher was instrumental in initiating construction of the Lincoln Highway, the nation's first transcontinental road (east-west), and the Dixie Highway north-south transcontinental roads. Indiana and national newspapers reported that the building of the Lincoln Highway, and later the Dixie highway, gave impetus to the Good Roads Movement and extolled the importance of these highways to the state and nation.

For more on the Lincoln and Dixie Highways, see footnotes 9 and 10, respectively.

 

[9] "Carl Fisher Plans Continental Road," South Bend Tribune, September 11, 1912, p. 2; "Organize to Build Nation-Wide Road," Indianapolis News, September 11, 1912; "Automobile Club Plans Vast Roads," New York Times, April 3, 1900, accessed nytimes.com; "Lincoln Highway Now Incorporated," South Bend Tribune, July 8, 1913, p. 4; "Proclamation of the Route of the Lincoln Highway," reprinted in "Lincoln Highway to Cross 13 States," South Bend Tribune, September 13, 1913, p. 2; "Lincoln Highway Route Announced," New York Times, September 14, 1913, p. C6.; J. Newton Gunn to Carl G. Fisher, November 17, 1925, submitted by applicant; "20 Million For Roads," Kansas City Star, July 6, 1913, p. 7A; "The Lincoln Highway: Its Ideals, Plans and Purposes,"(Detroit, MI: The Lincoln Highway Association, October 1913); "Fisher Offers to Oil and Rock Road," Indianapolis Sun, May 19, 1910, p. 3; "Offers $5,000 For Good Roads," Goshen Mid Week News Times, May 24, 1910, n.p.; "Lincoln Highway Fund Grows Fast," Winnipeg [Canada] Free Press, July 5, 1913, p. 22; "Features of Interest," Denver Tribune, May 26, 1910, n.p.; Hearings Before the Joint Committee on Federal Aid in the Construction of Post Roads, Part I [Washington: Government Printing Office, 1913], 129, accessed googlebooks.com ; "National Government's Part in Highway Work," American Motorist vol. 5, no. 5 (May 1913): 407, accessed googlebooks.com ; Suellen M. Hoy, "Governor Samuel M. Ralston and Indiana's Centennial Celebration," Indiana Magazine of History, Vol. 71, No. 3 (September 1975), 245-266; "Indiana's Bad Road System," South Bend Tribune, September 9, 1912, p. 6; "Promote Campaign for Better Roads," South Bend Tribune; October 22, 1914, p. 9; "Road Improvement is Gaining Ground," South Bend Tribune, June 26, 1915, p. 17; "Long Distance Touring 600 Per Cent Greater," South Bend Tribune, June 26, 1915, p. 18.

On September 10, 1912, Carl Fisher presented his vision for building a coast to coast highway at a meeting of automobile manufacturers and dealers in Indianapolis. The idea of a transcontinental highway had been proposed before, but Fisher brought the concept to a group with interests in the industry that would benefit the most from improved roads. These leading businessmen of the automobile industries organized the Lincoln Highway Association, which was incorporated by July 1, 1913, with headquarters in Detroit, Michigan, for the purpose of promoting and procuring "the establishment of a continuous improved highway from the Atlantic to the Pacific." The Lincoln Highway ran from New York to San Francisco. The original route through Indiana passed through Fort Wayne, Elkhart, South Bend, LaPorte, and Valparaiso.

In a 1925 letter to Fisher, J. Newton Gunn, President of the Lincoln Highway Association, aptly described Fisher as "the Father and Grandfather" of the Lincoln Highway. In addition to serving as the Vice-President of the Lincoln Highway Association, Fisher served as the public face of the highway project, working tirelessly to bolster enthusiasm for the project and maintain its momentum. For example, he embarked on a publicity tour from Indianapolis to Los Angeles, along with members of the Hoosier Motor Club of Indianapolis, the Indiana Auto Manufacturers Association, and the Lincoln Highway Association, to promote the Lincoln Highway. Fisher and Allison's company, Prest-O-Lite also donated money to the Association, and Fisher himself offered oil and rock materials to pave part of the road in Indiana.

Fisher originally called the highway the "Coast to Coast Rock Highway," but changed the name to "Lincoln Highway." The highway association believed that if the road served as a monument to the nation's sixteenth president, patriotic enthusiasm would garner greater public support for the project. Initially, Fisher sought to financially support road improvement by convincing auto manufacturers to provide a small percentage of their overall profits each year. Specifically, he urged manufacturers to donate one percent of their annual profits which he estimated would raise between 12 and 15 million dollars in one year.

He also urged federal, state, and local governments to fund portions of interstate highways. In one article, Fisher proposed that the federal government provide 25 percent, state government 25 percent, and local counties, 50 percent of funds for highways running through their areas of jurisdiction. In Indiana, Governor Samuel Ralston's efforts, and the pride generated by the celebration of the centennial of statehood, were two reasons that Hoosiers got behind the Good Roads Movement. Newspapers were also influential in their descriptions of negative effects of bad roads, such as high costs of transporting goods for farmers and the problems of rural isolation, and in their descriptions of the positive effects of good roads, such as their ability to increase tourism.

For further reading on the Lincoln Highway, see: The Lincoln Highway Association, The Lincoln Highway: The Story of a Crusade that Made Transportation History, (New York, 1935); Drake Hokanson,The Lincoln Highway: Mainstreet Across America (Iowa City, 1988); Kevin J. Patrick, "Significance of the Lincoln Highway," The Lincoln Highway Resource Guide, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Geography and Regional Planning Department, www.chss.iup.edu/kpatrick/Lincoln (accessed September 24, 2009); Richard F. Weingroff, "The Lincoln Highway," U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration, Highway History, www.fhwa.dot.gov/infrastructure/lincoln.cfm (accessed September 3, 2009); James Lin, Lincoln Highway Association, "History of the Lincoln Highway," lincolnhighway.jameslin.name/history/part1.html (accessed August 28, 2009).

[10] Carl G. Fisher to Haines Egbert, August 23, 1917, submitted by applicant; Letter, Samuel M. Ralston to governors of Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia and Florida, December 11, 1914, reprinted "Governor Ralston to Promote New Highway," Indianapolis News, December 12, 1914, p. 18; "New Dixie Highway in State Control," Special to the New York Times, April 4, 1915, p. 10 accessedProQuest; "Fights for Dixie Highway," New York Times, April 10, 1915, p. 16 accessed ProQuest; William Herschel, "Dixie Highway, Born in Indianapolis. Assumes International Scope, A New Canadian Link Extending from Sault Ste. Marie to Toronto," Indianapolis News, September 27, 1919, p. 15; W.H. Herschell, "10,000 Boosters Urge Dixie Highway," Indianapolis News, April 3, 1915, p. 1; Pam S. Ecker, "The Historic Context of the Dixie Highway," www.us-highways.com/tzimm/ecker.htm (accessed August 28, 2009), 3; Foster,Castles in the Sand, 19-20; "Everybody in Indiana, Including Thomas Taggart, is Pulling to Secure the Dixie Highway," Shelbyville Shelby Republican, April 15, 1915, p. 1.

In 1914, Carl Fisher and H. L. Gilbreath, secretary of the Hoosier Motor Club, began discussing an Indiana to Florida highway organization modeled after the Lincoln Highway Association. In December 1914, Indiana Governor Samuel Ralston proposed a meeting to organize a north-south highway initiative. Unlike the Lincoln Highway Association, locating the various routes of the Dixie Highway was controlled by the governors of the states involved. The Dixie Highway Association was officially organized and incorporated on April 3, 1915 in Chattanooga, Tennessee. On May 22, 1915, the Board of Directors responsible for mapping the Dixie Highway designated a winding route that had two and sometimes three parallel north-south roads joined by a ladder-like series of east-west connecting roads. By 1919 the Dixie Highway Association began planning to continue the road into Canada, creating an international highway. For a map of the complete Dixie Highway see Dixie Highway Association, "Outline of the Dixie Highway," 1923 (accessed October 12, 2010 through www.us-highways.com.

As with the highway between Plymouth and St. Joseph, Fisher had an ulterior motive for promoting this transcontinental highway, as it would connect northern states to the Miami Beach resort area which Fisher was developing and promoting. Fisher's involvement in the Dixie Highway was less prominent than in the Lincoln Highway, but he was instrumental in initiating the project. The Indiana entrepreneur represented his state in the highway association and contributed financially to the project.

For further information on the Dixie Highway see: Dixie Highway Association of North Georgia, "History of the Dixie Highway," www.dixiehighway.org (accessed August 28, 2009); Claudette Stager and Martha Carver, eds., Looking Beyond the Highway: Dixie Roads and Culture, (Knoxville, 2000), [1]-1; Tammy Leigh Ingram, "Dixie Highway: Private Enterprise and State Building in the South, 1900-1930" (Yale dissertation, 2007); T. Zimmerman, U.S. Highways from US 1 to (US 830), www.us-highways.com (accessed August 31, 2009) (valuable articles from this sources include: "Past, Present, and Future of the Dixie Highway," "The Historic Context of the Dixie Highway," and "Whatever Happened to the Dixie Highway?").

[11] "A Layout of a Nation-Wide Highway System Needed," Good Roads 20:17 (October 27, 1920): 203, accessed GoogleBooks ; Jean Labatut and Wheaton J. Lane, eds., Highways in Our National Life, (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1950), accessed Archive.org; Wayne E. Fuller, "Good Roads and Rural Free Delivery of Mail," Mississippi Valley Historical Review 42:1 (June 1955), 67-83, accessed WorldCat.org; Clifton Phillips, Indiana in Transition: The Emergence of an Industrial Commonwealth, 1880-1920 (Indianapolis, 1968), 141, 263, 266; Peter J. Hugill, "Good Roads and the Automobile in the United States 1880-1929," Geographical Review, 72:3 (July 1982): 327-349, accessed JSTOR; James H. Madison, Indiana through Tradition and Change: A History of the Hoosier State and Its People, 1920-1945 (Indianapolis: Indiana Historical Society, 1982), 182-203; Drake Hokanson, The Lincoln Highway: Mainstreet Across America (Iowa City: University of Iowa Press, 1988), 8; Foster,Castles in the Sand, 97; Pam S. Ecker, "The Historic Context of the Dixie Highway," U.S. Highways: From US 1 to US 830, accessed US-Highways.com; United States Postal Service Historian, "Rural Free Delivery," August 2013, accessed USPS.com.

Roads were improved and connected as a result of the Good Roads movement, resulting in easier long-distance travel. (For information on the start of the Good Roads movement and Fisher's role in promoting and expanding its ideals, see footnote 8). These improvements were a result of demands made by farmers needing to transport agricultural products, the federal government's prioritizing of rural mail delivery, and the greater affordability of automobiles by the average person. (For primary sources documenting these reasons for improved roads, see footnotes and IHB marker file for Lincoln & Dixie Highways, marker # 71.2010.1)

The goal of Fisher and other men in the automobile industry, was that better roads would in turn create more demand for cars. According to Drake Hokanson in The Lincoln Highway: Mainstreet Across America, "It was clear to Fisher and to the men of the infant auto industry that the success of the motorcar lay not only in better automobiles but in better roads as well…If the public were to see a clear trend toward highway improvement, it might stimulate sales and advance the cause of the automobile everywhere." According to historian James Madison, the rise in personal automobile ownership affected almost all aspects of society and led to what historian James J. Flink referred to as a pervasive "car culture." Madison writes that for some "the car brought families together for Sunday drives and auto vacations and provided new access to shopping, visiting, employment, and cultural and education opportunities…"

By the 1920s, the movement, which included the development of the Lincoln and Dixie Highways, resulted in the creation of state and federal highway programs. According to an article in a 1920 issue of Good Roads, "Both business and pleasure take the automobilist hundreds of miles, across county and state lines and often through several states. The growth of highway transportation has made trips of several hundred miles matters of everyday occurrence and has eliminated state lines, insofar as routes are concerned."

[12] Kenneth L. Roberts, "Tropical Growth," Saturday Evening Post, April 29, 1922 accessed Googlebooks; Ligonier Leader, April 17, 1913; Atlanta [Georgia] Constitution, November 19, 1913; Williamsport [Ind.] Review, May 21, 1914; Indianapolis Star, January 24, 1915; Bloomington Evening World, March 26, 1915; Indianapolis Star, January 24, 1915; "Building News," American Architect (1919), 8; Commoner, February, 1921, 11; Indianapolis Star, May 1, 1922; Will Rogers, "Carl Took Florida From the Alligators. . . " The [Steubenville, Ohio] Herald-Star, October 10, 1925; Barrons, March 2, 1925; New York Times, September, 22, 1925, 30 accessed ProQuest; New York Times, February 26, 1926, 4 accessed ProQuest; NOAA Hurricane info; "Indianapolis Speedway May Change Ownership," Logansport Pharos-Tribune, July 28, 1927; "Seeking Speedway," Kokomo Daily Tribune, July 29, 1927; New York Times, May 7, 1932, 30 accessed ProQuest; New York Times, June 14, 1938, 36 accessedProQuest; New York Times, Aug 14, 1977, 349 accessedProQuest; New York Times, August 11, 2002, L111 accessed ProQuest; City Dedicates Memorial to Founder," Indianapolis Star, April 15, 1941, 21; Jennifer Leynes and David Cullison, Biscayne National Park Historic Resource Study (Southeast Regional Office, National Park Service: January 1998), 20-24; Interview with Jane Fisher, April 4, 1967, Miami-Dade County Oral History Collection, George A. Smothers Libraries, University of Florida, 8; Fisher, Pacesetter, 143-44,399; Foster, Castles in the Sand, 164-65;

According to Carl Fisher's first wife Jane, the Fishers first traveled to Miami, Florida, in February 1910. At that time, the population of Miami was about 5500. Not long after that first trip, the Fishers purchased a winter home in Miami and Carl made plans to produce a water carnival and boat race to draw more people to the area.

In fact, Fisher's new project-to develop "a great American winter resort"-was located about two miles across the Biscayne Bay from Miami. The unnamed, uninhabited island protecting Miami from the Atlantic Ocean became Carl Fisher's new business interest. Fisher was not the first person to dream about the possibilities for this "long, narrow, jungle-grown sand spit." Other Miami businessmen such as John Collins and the Lummus brothers had begun to develop the island by 1912. In December, Fisher advertised the opening of his Alton Beach Realty Co. to develop and promote his property on the swampy sand bar that lay offshore from the town of Miami-today's Miami Beach.

By 1915, enough wealthy Hoosiers spent their winters in Miami to establish a Miami-Indiana Club; Fisher and his wife lived in a new home, the "Shadows," on the island of Miami Beach. At its first annual meeting, Carl Fisher and James Whitcomb Riley were honored guests. Even then, Fisher was touted as "the man who is putting Miami on the map."

Fisher's Miami Beach project eventually became wildly successful. But first, Fisher hired laborers to clear the mangroves, contracted with companies to dredge sand from Biscayne Bay to add land to the sandbar, and worked with engineers to construct a permanent shoreline for the same. To entice people to move to the island, the developers needed to sell their visions of the future. Fisher worked to provide passable streets, reliable electrical power, the first hotel on the island, and popular recreational amenities. In 1919, the American Architect listed ten Miami Beach projects undertaken by Carl Fisher or the Alton Beach Realty Co. including residences, additions to the existing bathing pavilion and the golf course club house, shops and apartments.

Fisher and his wife played host to innumerable guests, famous and infamous-selling Miami Beach to all who would listen. In February 1921, president-elect Warren G. Harding traveled to Miami. After he visited William Jennings Bryan and his wife, Harding boarded Carl Fisher's speed boat and headed for Fisher's Colcolobo Cay fishing club for several days. Will Rogers quipped of Carl Fisher and his accomplishments: "He could take Death Valley and turn it into a sunken garden."

In 1925, at the peak of the Florida land bubble, according to C.W. Barron owner of Dow Jones & Co. and the Wall Street Journal, Fisher's Miami Beach holdings were worth about $40,000,000. Barron praised Fisher for his part in the development and growth of Miami and Miami Beach; Barron, like Fisher, also believed that the automobile and the extension of good roads and highways played an important role in the area's appeal.

Fisher's next project became national news on September 22, 1925 when the New York Times announced that he had bought almost 9000 acres of undeveloped land at the eastern tip of Long Island, New York. The Montauk Beach Development Co., controlled by Fisher, planned to spend $20,000,000 to turn Montauk Beach, Long Island into a "high-class summer resort" with hotels, golf courses, polo fields, and an office building.

Then Fisher's luck changed. Jane Fisher obtained a divorce from Carl in July 1926. In September, a hurricane directly hit Miami Beach and Miami; the storm destroyed property and halted real estate sales for all the developers and speculators. Fisher's income drastically declined.

Even so, the Montauk Beach project grew quickly and the Montauk Manor Hotel opened with great fanfare on June 1, 1927. However, on October 1929 the Stock Market crashed. Fisher kept building; by 1932, Fisher had invested about $7,000,000 in the Montauk project. The New York Times, May 7, 1932, reported Fisher's "Montauk Properties in Receivers Hands;" he could no longer pay the bills. In 1934, Fisher's company filed for bankruptcy. The company was reorganized in 1938 as the Montauk Beach Co., Inc. and Fisher was named chairman of the board. But, Fisher's health was deteriorating; his energy was gone.

While not achieving his dream for Montauk, Carl Fisher's legacy remains. He built good roads, an electric power plant, and water mains. At Montauk, Fisher built many Tudor-style buildings and recreational facilities which remain: Montauk Manor, Montauk Yacht Club, Montauk Beach Casino, Carl Fisher Office Building, Montauk Tennis Stadium, Montauk Downs Golf Course. His own 20 acre estate also remains.

In August, 2002, on the 75th anniversary of the opening of the Montauk Manor, Montauk Historical Society president Betsy White honored Fisher's role in Montauk's history: "Carl Fisher came here and created Montauk, from our main street to our recreational building, to our private homes, and even his own stately mansion."

Fisher remained involved with the growth and development of the Miami Beach area and maintained a residence there for the rest of his life. In April 1941, two years after Fisher's death, Miami Beach paid tribute to Fisher's contributions with a memorial; the inscription reads, "Carl Graham Fisher-he carved a great city out of a jungle."

[13] "Carl Graham Fisher," Death Date: 1939, Dade County, Florida, Florida Death Index, 1877-1998, accessed AncestryLibrary; "Carl G. Fisher Dies; Resort Organizer," New York Times, July 16, 1939, 33 accessed ProQuest; "Carl G. Fisher, Auto Pioneer, Dies," Indianapolis Sunday Star, July 16, 1939; "Speedway Promoter Dies," Logansport Press, July 16, 1939, 6; "Carl Fisher Dead," Tipton Tribune, July 17, 1939; "Carl Fisher Services Will Be Held Tuesday," Logansport Pharos Tribune, July 17, 1939, 8; "Carl G. Fisher's Burial Arranged in Miami Beach," Indianapolis Times, July 17, 1939, 1; "Florida Resort Honors Fisher,"Panama City [Florida] News Herald, July 18, 1939, 6; Photograph of Grave, accessedFind-A-Grave; Indianapolis Star, January 12, 1943, 4; Fisher, Pacesetter, 398.

Carl Fisher died on July 15, 1939 in Miami, Florida. In 1943, his remains were brought to Crown Hill Cemetery in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Keywords

Transportation; Business, Industry, & Labor; Sports