Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Hagerty Employee

When electric cabs ruled New York’s roads

May of 1899: The United States’ first ever speeding ticket has just been issued to New York cab driver Jacob German.


The Brooklyn Daily Eagle reports that German is “the first man arrested for running an automobile too fast” after being clocked at 12 mph on Lexington Avenue. He is pursued and arrested by a fast-pedaling Bicycle Roundsman. Both German and his employers at the Electric Vehicle Company (of 1683 Broadway) are said to be “shocked” (no pun intended) when he is locked up in the East 22nd Street police station.


Read the full article on


Internal combustion engines have improved greatly since the vehicles they power surpassed the utility of electric vehicles almost one hundred and twenty years ago.

New Driver

I'm curious if there was any way for police to measure speed back then. Did it just look fast and the driver admitted the speedometer said 12 MPH?