Like many on here I have been a big fan of the Model T for number of years now. I did make it to the Henry Ford but never made it into the stacks.
I am sure many of us are very much interested in some/all of the documents in there. I know I would pay good money for copies.
So thouse that have gone and have input what are the odds of: Copying some/all of the documents for both CD and Internet access?
Can this be done in a lifetime, at lease the high level documents? Legal matters, Ford... copyright etc?
I would gladly offer my time/some cash to help an undertaking such as this. Are there others out there that would help time and or money? Are there other people interested in such an undertaking?
I would be happy to spearhead on such a project if this is even remotely a hope?
Input, thoughts and suggestions everyone?
As far as anyone has heard, it would be illegal to copy and distribute drawings, etc. obtained from the Benson Ford Research Center. Since your willing to pay good money for copies then contact Benson Ford Research center and they will make copies for you and charge you good money, all legal like. It helps to know what the part numbers and/or drawing numbers are as this will cut down on cost. John Regan & Trent Boggus are the recognized authorities on how to search the archives and request drawings, but it wouldn't hurt to call the archives first and get the "low down".
1. I’m ready to start small. Have you visited the archives before? Do you live close to them or visit relatives or friends near there? When would you like to start? For those who missed a similar thread see: http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/29/47434.html?1202503552 and for that matter also on the Early Ford Registry forum at: http://www.earlyfordregistry.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=368&sid=939e66f75cdbdd10 7819191beb7f426d and http://www.earlyfordregistry.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=381&sid=939e66f75cdbdd10 7819191beb7f426d that also have a little about the same topic. Others are also thinking the same thing – so the timing may be right to make something happen or at least get it started.
2. Jerry, you are correct that we need to protect and respect other people’s intellectual property (i.e. drawings, pictures, songs, written articles, books, etc.). First, because it is the right thing to do and second there are also the legalities that could get us in trouble if we didn’t. But if we obtain the proper permission there is nothing illegal or wrong about copying and distributing the drawings. For example Bruce on page 72 of his book printed what appears to be a Ford Motor Company Drawing. And he has numerous photographs that probably came from the Archives. I’m sure he obtained the proper permission to put them in his book. Many of them had previously been published in articles in the Vintage Ford. Carlton Pate is currently writing a book on the 1903-1909 Ford Cars. He is deciding how many pictures etc. from the Ford archives he wants to include in the book. He has already been working with the Archives and has obtained numerous pictures etc from them. It is only for the ones he wants to publish that he will pay an additional fee for the permission to publish in his book. And of course both the MTFCI and MTFCA magazines have both published information from the archives after contacting and obtaining the proper authorization. The key is to obtain the type of authorization you need, i.e. for personal use, for commercial use to manufacture parts or for use to publish etc.. For example if I purchase a single drawing and sign the document that says I will not further distribute that drawing, then I should not and cannot legally distribute that drawing to others. But if I pay a larger fee or ask and they grant me authorization to do something else with the drawing or other item – then I can do whatever I have been authorized to do. I hope I explained that in a way that makes sense and is also accurate.
3. And at some point many things move into the public domain. Sometimes it is by accident. For example “It’s a Wonderful Life” became a Christmas special in part because the copy right owner failed to properly renew the copyright and the TV folks could show it without paying an additional royalty (ref the CD of it that we watched last Christmas). At some point, after so many years, I think – but I don’t know for sure – things move into the public domain. What that point is for different items, I do not know, and of course copyrights and patents can be renewed a certain number of times etc.. And of course even if the item is no longer copyrighted, if I obtain a copy under the restrictions that I will not further distribute the copy, then I should keep my word.
4. The desire to make more of the 1903-1931 and more specifically the 1903-1909 Ford information from the Archives more easily available and affordable to others is a topic I also need to bring up with the Early Ford Registry. It is already possible for anyone to purchase the right to publish any picture or drawing (see the next paragraph). But many folks are not aware of that, or don’t know how to go through the steps of doing that, or in the case of many of us, the cost becomes a limit to our access to the information. So I am hoping we can come up with a “win-win” for the archives and the hobbyist. Actually if you live in the Detroit area – you already have a great “win-win.” You can look at anything you desire and take notes, etc. for free. But for those that live further away, there are additional cost involved (and that is understandable – if they don’t make enough money to keep the light bill paid etc. then no one will have access to the information). But I would like to pursue discovering a “win-win” for both the Archives and those that have to do most of the research with them long distance. For example, if we (EFR for the 1903-1908 info and MTFCA for the 1909-27 info, and MAFCA foundation for the 1928-31 info) could make an arrangement to make copies and store them off site, that would provide a backup incase of a natural disaster to the Archive storage area. And in return we could make the information available via the internet and/or mail at a much reduced rate to members, still provide funding to the Benson Ford Archives, and still maintain their restrictions on the data provided. It may turn out that isn’t a very practical idea – if so that is fine. But I would like me or someone to check into it to see if it or another idea could both protect the information from catastrophic loss and make it more available at the same time.
5. The Benson Ford has a listing of current fees and associated permissions at: http://www.thehenryford.org/research/services/forms.asp I think they do fantastic work at preserving the information and making it available. Could it be improved upon – probably. For example at one time the Archives did not own a copier. The MTFCA and several other groups helped to raise money to purchase a copier to give to the Archives. That was a “win-win” for everyone. Bruce commented about how much more he would be able to record if there was a copier available and he did not have to write everything down by hand. I’m hoping with the technology available through computers that the information in the Archives can be backed up as well as made available easier and for less cost. Perhaps we need to raise money for the Archives to start such a project rather than one of our groups trying to do it. But it would be a shame if kids of the next generation were told, “Yes, at one time you could order a copy of the shipping invoice for any 1909 – 1911 Model T from serial number 1,119 to 70,750 or so. But that was before the great disaster of 20xx when “such and such” happened and many of the records stored in building x,y,z were destroyed.” Will that happen … we all hope it never will. But I would much rather have the information backed up and it is never needed than have it lost and we wish had been preserved.
6. If you are interested in
a. Finding out if this is a practical project at this time,
b. Know of others already working on a similar project
c. Know of someone with good contacts at the archives
d. Want to lead this charge (group)
e. Have other suggestions
f. Would like to be added to any e-mails related to this topic (no we won’t sell your name to raise money).
g. If you have or know of others who have drawings that did NOT come from the Archives.
(1) In our Early Ford Group we know of some craftsmen who created drawings from the original parts before they were aware that drawings were available at the archives. (Wear and tear can impact the dimensions and they may need to be cleaned up some?)
(2) Others such as John Regan have taken information from the archives and created their own original drawings (see: http://www.model-t-ford.org/tech_diagrams/tech_diagrams.htm and click on his frame drawing);
(3) Others have drawings that may not have come through the archives
(4) Some of the drawings our members have access to, the Archives may not have a copy of and we could provide the Archives with that information.
For any of that type of information, please e-mail me (just click on my name and you can send a private e-mail without revealing your address (recommended for insults etc) or my full e-mail address is there and that would work great. Responses will be slow – ok fast compared to letters sent back in 1800s. But I believe there is an opportunity here.
Hap Tucker, 1915 Model T Ford Touring cut off and made into a pickup truck and 1907 Model S Runabout. Sumter SC.
Hap,willing to donate 100cdn$ to the cause
Good point on number 5. A few years ago I tried to get information on my 65 Mustang, but unfortunately none of that information exists any more. I don't remember if it was destroyed intentionally or not, but it is a tremendous loss to my fellow owners of 65-66 Mustangs.
I don't know if any one on here ever reads the Tucker club's website (www.tuckerclub.org), but they apparently have an actual archives where they try to amass all the material they can in an effort to save their portion of history. Although their situation is different in that there is no other authority to save the documentation, it is equally important that the model T and other early Ford cars be preserved for future generations.
This is an excellent idea, and I hope that many more will be in support of this idea.
Thank you so much for your generous offer. For now, please put the money on hold until we get a little more definition of who needs the support and which goals are they working towards. I guess this means we have started.
I will contact a few folks over the next few months and let you know what we find out. Or if there is someone else who has more time and more importantly better connections with the archives I will gladly support their effort.
If others are interested in this project please let us know.
Hap Tucker 1915 Model T Ford touring cut off and made into a pickup truck and 1907 Model S Runabout. Sumter SC