Bertha Takes a Drive: How the Benz Automobile Changed the World

Bertha Takes a Drive: How the Benz Automobile Changed the World

by Jan Adkins

NOOK Book(NOOK Kids)

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It's 1888 and Bertha Benz's husband, Karl, has invented the prototype Benz motorwagen. But the German government declares the vehicle illegal, and the church calls it the devil's work. Unbeknownst to her husband, Bertha steals away with her two sons and drives nearly one hundred miles to prove just how amazing the motorwagen is. Bertha's mechanical savvy gets the boys to Grandma's house safely, and the remarkable mother/son road trip reduces global concern about moving vehicles.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781607347545
Publisher: Charlesbridge
Publication date: 10/03/2017
Sold by: Penguin Random House Publisher Services
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 32
File size: 15 MB
Note: This product may take a few minutes to download.
Age Range: 5 - 8 Years

About the Author

Jan Adkins is an odd bird, excited by things tiny and by enormous concepts. He’s published about forty-five books but they seem to be only excuses to find new stories and learn new facts. He’s been called “The Explainer General” because most of his work unsnarls complicated knots of confusion and re-builds them as simple paths to understanding. He explains bright bits of the world in pictures and words, often to young people. He’s written about sandcastles, bridges, pirates, knights, cowboys, maps, sailing, knots, coal, oil and gold. He’s got a long list of things he still wants to figure out and explain. Adkins (this is what his grandsons call him) believes real history and real science are ten or twelve times cooler than fairy tales and magic.

Read an Excerpt

Bertha Benz woke her two oldest children with a soft nudge. She put a finger to her lips. “Quiet,” she whispered.

All three tiptoed down the stairs in their socks. They put on their shoes and stepped into Papa’s shop.

In the cool August morning, Bertha, Richard, and Eugen pushed a strange machine out of the shop and into the alley. They were sneaking away with Papa’s invention: the Benz Motorwagen!

Richard began to giggle.

“Hush,” Bertha whispered. “The policemen out front will hear you.”

Germany’s emperor, Wilhelm II, had declared the Motorwagen illegal and posted two officers outside the Benzes’ home. The government couldn’t imagine what would happen if people could get up and go wherever they wanted, whenever they wanted.

Church officials were not happy with the invention, either. It was too new and too loud. They called it der Teufelwagen—the Devil’s Wagon.

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