Alice Ramsey

Inducted 2000

First woman to drive an automobile across the United States and the first woman to be inducted into the Automotive Hall of Fame.

Motivated by the spirit of adventure, Alice Ramsey sought to do what had never been done before. On June 9, 1909, Alice Ramsey and three other women left New York City while driving a Maxwell touring car. Forty-one driving days, 11 tires and 3,800 miles later they arrived in San Francisco, where they were met by a large fanfare celebration.

Alice Ramsey and her companions (who did not drive during the trip) experienced numerous challenges during the journey, including bad roads, poor weather, flat tires and mechanical breakdowns. In Nebraska, they met up with Indians, feared the worst, then discovered the Indians were just hunting jackrabbits. In Wyoming, the group was stopped temporarily by men on horseback, a posse tracking a murder.

In 1961, Ramsey chronicled the adventure in her book, Veil, Duster and Tire Iron. On October 17, 2000, Alice Huyler Ramsey became the first woman to be inducted into the Automotive Hall of Fame. Her courage and determination have inspired countless women to pursue automotive-related goals and dreams.

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