Remember these slogans? "Built for Country Roads, Built for Country Loads!"-The Patriot Truck of Nebraska. "They Are Big and Long and Brown and Strong!"-The Luverne, from Minnesota. "No Road Too Rough, No Hill Too Tough!"-Kansas's Great Smith automobile. "Spaulding Cars First Because Spaulding Cars Last!"-Iowa's entry. "Nature Provides a Great Deal-But to Enjoy It, You Need a Moon!"-Moon Motors of Missouri. For a few years these cars were the pride of their communities and vied with dozens of other makers for a share of the burgeoning auto business. Between the development of the first automobiles in the 1890s and the shock of the Depression in the 1930s, there was a florescence of automobile manufacture throughout the United States as bicycle makers, carriage makers, and machinists tried their hands at making cars. Many produced only a few specimens before being rapidly "shaken out"-bankrupt, or turning their attention solely to repair work or parts manufacture. But many others struggled on, making cars, trucks, and other motorized vehicles for many years before abandoning their efforts. The stories of these firms are an under-appreciated thread in the history of American automobiles, and they are fascinating glimpses into the business, labor, and social history of the communities where the firms were based. In this book McConnell devotes a full chapter each to five early car makers from the upper midwestern states (Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, and Nebraska). These firms produced for different market segments, and their activities reveal varying approaches to production and sales problems. The result is a volume that appeals to a broad audience interested in early automobiles, and one which will also interest historians of the communities and states involved, and business and industrial historians. "The things that make the auto industry so fascinating and interesting can be found in Great Cars of the Great Plains. In a simpler time, people with a passion for automobiles built unique vehicles focused on their customer needs-not a bad formula for success today. A great read!"-Robert A. Lutz, President, Chrysler Corporation. Curt McConnell is a Lincoln-based journalist and newspaper editor. On the same topic he has written "The Cars of Nebraska," Horseless Carriage Gazette (1987).