Gasoline - History of Gasoline


With the unstable price of gasoline always being reported in the news, the precious liquid that fuels cars and the economy is necessary for daily life. Without gasoline cars, trains, and buses wouldn't move, airplanes couldn't fly, and the economy would sink. Surprisingly however, gasoline, although very important today, used to be trash.

In the days of the horse-drawn carriage, gasoline was considered waste and was immediately discarded. In the 1800s, oil, which was dug up from beneath the ground, was collected to produce kerosene for lighting lamps. When making kerosene, gasoline was also produced. However, because gasoline had no use at that time it was thrown in the trash.

Upon the invention of the automobile in 1892, gasoline was discovered as a useful fuel source for the new vehicles. As demand increased for gasoline to run cars, oil wells began popping up in multiple states across the country. However, it still wasn't enough and gasoline shortages were common.

William Burton and Robert Humphreys solved this problem in 1913 by improving the gasoline creation process. This made gasoline creation quicker and cheaper. After these developments, gasoline production could keep up with the ever-growing number of automobiles on the road.

Over the next few decades gasoline production was improved and altered. In the 1930s, lead was added to make the liquid smoother for cars to process. However, due to safety concerns this was removed in the 1970s.

Today, gasoline is only one source of energy used to drive automobiles. Battery powered, and solar powered cars are also being developed and sold as alternatives to the gasoline-driven cars. The clear liquid of gasoline, drove the change from the horse-drawn carriage to our modern-day vehicles. The use of new alternative energy sources will, like gasoline, propel the automobile industry forward into the future.

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