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Woman of the Month - Bertha Benz

Ever heard of a little car company called Mercedes Benz? Today we honor the CRAZY co-founding entrepreneur, Bertha Benz. That’s right, one of the co-founders of Mercedes Benz, the source of the seed money, and the mind behind the marketing, was a woman. Bertha Ringer married Karl Benz in 1872 and the source of funds for starting Mercedes Benz was Bertha’s dowry. After the first Mercedes Benz car was patented, it was Bertha who decided that the best way to demonstrate the reliability of the new car was to have a woman drive it cross country. So she left Manheim at home and travelled with just her children in the car. Along the way, she needed to make repairs: The fuel lines were fixed using her hat pin, she used her garter to repair the ignition, she hired a blacksmith to repair the drive chain, and when the brakes stopped working she had a cobbler attach leather strips to the brake shoes, thereby inventing brake linings. Her journey brought the Mercedes Benz “Motorwagen” international attention and its first sales. The route Bertha drove on that initial journey is now officially called the Bertha Benz Memorial Route. In 1925 Carl Benz wrote in his memoirs “Only one person remained with me in the small ship of life when it seemed destined to sink. That was my wife. Bravely and resolutely she set the new sails of hope”. Crazy Woman Cellars celebrates this incredible visionary who was one of the founders of the automobile industry.