Selden Automobile, by Unknown, Unknown. Patent model was built in 1890s, Smithsonian Archives - History Div, The original United States Patent Office model of the Selden automobile, 1879-1895. This patent model of the George B. Selden gasoline automobile was submitted in 1879. He was granted a patent in 1895. Around 1906, and not in 1887 as is so often thought or implied by automotive historians, a full-sized version of this vehicle was built as an exhibit for the court while the famous Selden patent suit was underway. It was, however, powered by Selden's original engine built in the 1870's. (Widder, p. 200)..