John and Horace Dodge owned a machine engineering plant making motorcycles and gear boxes for Ford and Oldsmobile. In 1913, they started building a car of their own and in 1914 the first finished product left the small factory in Hamtramck. In a number of respects this first car was way ahead of its time. During the first full year of production, 1915, a total in excess of 45,000 Dodges were sold. The car was and remains a great success. In 1920, sales rocketed to 141,000 vehicles. Unfortunately, the Dodge brothers did not survive to experience this pleasant state of affairs, both dying in quick succession in 1920 of flu. Three years later, on 31 July 1928, Walter P. Chrysler took over the factories from the bank for a cool $170 million. In 1930, the cars were sold for the first time under the name 'Dodge' rather than 'Dodge Brothers'.
The complete encyclopedia of Vintage Cars - Rob de la Rive Box