Early cars and other automobiles used to have an open design and there were no windshields. The drivers had to wear shades or goggles to protect their eyes from any dust or other in the air, such as insects. This became very uncomfortable and impractical with the passage of time, until the windshield was invented circa 1904.
It was a major shift for vehicles – going from being an open-air vehicle to a more covered one. It was also one of the best things that could ever happen to cars.
However, since the early stages, the windshield glass used to shatter easily upon impact. This was somewhat counterproductive because it caused more injuries as compared to just wearing goggles.