The Invention Of The American Automobile Industry

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Motor City Detroit, Michigan was originally founded as Fort Detroit by the French in the very early 18th century. However, that is not what people think when they think about the once great city that is Detroit. Most people think about the modern automobile, and the American “Big Three” car company giants that are Ford, Chrysler, and GM. The car was not invented in Detroit. However, the car was most certainly perfected in Detroit. Henry Ford was the pioneer of the American automobile industry. He was born in 1863 near Dearborn, Michigan. Forty years later he started Ford Motor Company with the help of Thomas Edison. In 1908, Henry Ford forever changed the world with his Model T. Ford was known as a revolutionary person for not only making the automobile inexpensive but also for teaching workers proper skills and paying them steady wages. (Henry Ford Bio, 1) Only a mere six years later, Ford changed the world again with his invention of the moving assembly line in 1914. With the modern assembly line he was now able to mass produce his Model T. Nearly everything mass produced in the world is assembled on an assembly line thanks to Ford’s 100 year old idea. Not only did Ford make life easier for civilians by giving them affordable access to personal transportation, he also paid his employees $5 ($118.24 in 2016) a day to keep them loyal to his company and make sure they were paid well. (Henry Ford Bio, 1) It was not long until Henry Ford experienced competition from another automobile manufacturer who saw the genius in the assembly line, and that was GM, specifically, Chevrolet. William Crapo Durant would eventually start Chevrolet Motors, but not before failing a few times first. Durant was in the process of trying to purchase Fo... ... middle of paper ... ...e United States from countries like Mexico and Turkey where it is much cheaper to ship cars into the States and pay people very low wages than it is to build cars in America. The auto industry leaving Detroit caused a major collapse of the city, and it is visible in the streets and neighborhoods. Anywhere you look today in Detroit there are abandoned buildings, graffiti writings, crime, liquor stores, and rough pawn shops, but Detroit is not dead. Today, in 2016, the People of Detroit are making a comeback. Jobs are being created, local communities are providing fresh fruit for their neighbors. Some companies are starting up to create compost for planting fresh grass where buildings and homes have fallen into rubble. If the American auto industry can build, and nearly destroy an entire city in less than 100 years, what does that say about America in the 20th century?

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