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Buick was the second enterprise of David Dunbar Buick, who first invented a way of affixing porcelain to cast iron and thus gave the world the white bathtub. In 1899 Buick sold his plumbing business, and went into the manufacture of engines. Buick, along with Walter Marr and Eugene Richard, developed the valve-in-head engine. Buick, Marr, and Richard built and tested a car in 1903, but were slow to get into production. Benjamin Briscoe, who had been putting up the money, grew impatient and sold the company to James Whiting, of the Flint Wagon Works. A production prototype was not made until summer of 1904. The first Buick car sold in August, and within a couple of months sixteen Buicks had been ordered. But by then, Whiting was out of money. On November 1, 1904, Whiting sold the company to William Crapo Durant, co-owner of the Durant-Dort Carriage Company. Billy Durant was a live wire, and under his control Buick production took off. The company produced 750 cars in 1905, 1400 in 1906, and 4641 in 1907. In 1908, while producing 8820 cars, Durant used Buick as his base to form General Motors. By the end of 1908, David Buick had left the company. Over the years he was involved in several unsuccessful business ventures, and in 1929 he died in poverty at the age of seventy-four. Meanwhile, the company he founded went on to become one of the most successful in automotive history. 

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