Social distancing measures implemented to slow the spread of coronavirus have forced most museums to close down indefinitely. But the Petersen Automotive Museum is trying to keep things going with a series of videos and livestreams.
If you’re in need of something to distract—and also educate—your kids, the museum has put together a video history of the automobile that runs 36 minutes.
Pinpointing the start of the history of the automobile is a challenge, as there were many false starts. Lecturers note one of them—Nicholas-Joseph Cugnot’s steam-powered artillery tractor of 1769.
But the first true car is generally considered to be the 1886 Benz Patent Motorwagen, built by Karl Benz.
With its three-wheel configuration and tiller steering, the Benz doesn’t seem to have much in common with a modern car. But it was the first vehicle to combine many key features, including a four-stroke internal-combustion engine, carburetion, spark plugs,