Sunday, September 9, 2012
January 1, 1800
Escaping the French Revolution and leaving their printing business behind them, Pierre Samuel du Pont de Nemours and son Eleuthere Irenee (E.I.) arrive in America at Rhode Island after a grueling 90 day voyage. Though the elder DuPont did not have any family in America, he had friends, namely Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson. Father and son eventually found their way to Bergen, New Jersey. The elder DuPont wanted to engage in the elaborate scheme of international trade. Son, E.I. took a more practical approach, the manufacture of gunpowder. E.I. won the argument. After all, he had been an apprentice gunpowder maker in France studying under the best in the industry. Even then, E.I. calculated that gunpowder was an emerging technology, which would be needed for years to come. The chemistry and manufacture of gunpowder would lead to a multitude of products, not the least of which was automotive paint years later. Today, DuPont is one of the major producers of automotive refinish paint in the world; and the leading provider of automotive refinish paint in the U.S.
(Source: DuPont: From the Banks of the Brandywine to Miracles of Science by Adrian Kinnane copyright 2002)