The Man who put Mennonites on wheels: J.R. Friesen

A tribute to the man who put Mennonites on wheels! J.R. Friesen introduced the automobile to not only Mennonites, but to all of Western Canada in 1914. It is well-known that the decision to open the first Ford dealership in Western Canada put him at odds with the Gemeinde. He was unofficially excommunicated for his “worldly ways” of embracing the automobile era but found a more accepting church to attend where cars were allowed.   J.R. Friesen was a man of vision who saw that the automobile would eventually be embraced by everyone. And the rest is history.

Here we see a "winterized" model t touring that is sitting on top of a bob sled. This was the original way to save money on fuel!  Interesting trivia: A gallon of gas in 1914, 12¢ /gallon. In 2023, $6.75

Celebrate the automotive legacy of J.R. Friesen with our special edition comfort T shirt. Click on the image below to view available sizes.


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