Rolls Meets Royce
May 4, 1904 - It was on this day that Charles Rolls and Henry Royce were introduced to each other. Rolls owned one of England's first car dealerships. Royce was a mechanical engineer who had just built a 2-cylinder car that greatly impressed Rolls. They decided to go into business together as Rolls-Royce Limited, and within 3 years they were winning awards for the quality and reliability of their cars.
As business boomed, Rolls became less interested in automobiles and spent most of his time experimenting in aeronautics. He was an aviation pioneer and the first man to make a non-stop double-crossing of the English Channel in a plane. A little over a month later he became the first Briton to die in a plane crash when the tail of his Wright Flyer broke off during a flight.
Royce continued designing and innovating engines for another 3 decades. A lifelong workaholic, Royce's last words on his deathbed were, "I wish I had spent more time in the office."