Supporting History’s Great Ideas

Over many decades, Caterpillar's yellow iron has been at the center stage – contributing to some of history’s greatest ideas while helping our customers build a better world.

The following video illustrates just how the work we do has a positive impact on the world. 

  • We helped shoot for the moon
    During the Apollo moon-landing missions in the 1960s, Cat engines provided power for the giant antennas at tracking stations all over the world, facilitating communication with the astronauts while they were in space.
  • Our products explored the last frontier
    Starting in the 1950s the U.S. government launched a series of Antarctic exploration missions under the name Operation Deep Freeze, and Caterpillar played a part in these missions by providing specially-designed tractors with wider tracks to help distribute their weight and keep them from sinking into the ice. This is actually the origin of our low ground pressure, or LGP, tractors that we still make today.
  • We’ve paved roads of the future  
    Our machines played an important role in the construction of America’s 48,000-mile-long Interstate Highway System, one of the most significant construction projects in U.S. history.
  • We created a cultural icon
    Several of the legendary “Best 60” tractors, built by one of our predecessor companies and the forerunners of today’s D8 dozer, were used to carry materials for the Hollywood sign up Mount Lee in the Hollywood Hills.
  • We powered South America
    Cat products were used extensively in the construction of the Itaipu Dam, built on the border between Brazil and Paraguay. As of 2016, the dam produced the most hydroelectric power of any dam in the world. Cat equipment use on the project was so extensive that we worked with the local dealer to supply parts to keep the machines running through a warehouse built on the construction site.
  • We helped connect the world’s oceans
    Over 100 Bucyrus and Marion steam shovels, as well as an assortment of railroad cranes and dredges, were used to dig the Panama Canal, one of the seven wonders of the modern world.
  • Cat tamed a wild river
    Cat machines played a vital role in the construction of the Hoover Dam, helping harness the power of the Colorado River and provide electricity to large areas of Nevada, Arizona, and California.
  • We bridged the impossible
    At the time of its construction, the Golden Gate Bridge was the longest and tallest suspension bridge in the world, and Cat machines were there hauling materials to the site and building the roads that lead to the bridge.
  • We built a world-class city 
    Our machines have been at work building Chicago going all the way back to our predecessor companies. They were used extensively by the Chicago Park District to build golf courses, playgrounds, and even some of the City’s famous Gold Coast beaches. Also, several Holt 10-Ton tractors were even used in the construction of Soldier Field.
  • Our products connect
    More than 100 Cat machines were used in the construction of the Chunnel, the 31-mile rail tunnel connecting England with France. The underwater portion of the tunnel is 23.5 miles long and is the longest section of the underwater tunnel anywhere in the world.

This is your legacy. And, when you see Caterpillar products out in the world, you are seeing our future being built before your very eyes. We make history every day on the biggest projects around the world and in tiny projects that build our local communities. Your work matters.  

Manufacturing Day