Migration - The Henry Ford
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An Urbanization Story • Henry Ford was only sixteen when he emigrated from his family’s farm in Dearborn, Michigan to Detroit, in 1879. • There he worked as an apprentice machinist for 3 years. • For the next 9 years, he repaired farm implements, worked on his family’s farm, and occasionally worked in Detroit factories.
First Official Ford Motor Company Portrait of Henry Ford, 1904 From the Collections of The Henry Ford. ID#THF36449
An Urbanization Story • Henry Ford migrated to the city permanently in 1891. • He went on to provide jobs in Detroit factories for millions of people, many of whom, like him, grew up on farms.
Crowd of Applicants outside Highland Park Plant after Five Dollar Day Announcement, January 1914 From the Collections of The Henry Ford. ID#THF4402
Define: Migration Emigration Urbanization
Farm Life at the Turn of the 20th Century • Hard labor from sunup to sundown. • Different tasks from day to day, and season to season. • Most people working on family farms owned the operation and were their own bosses.
Hay Wagon Coming up from a Meadow, Flushing, NY, circa 1900 From the Collections of The Henry Ford. ID#THF38312
Farm Life is Changing… Pushes From the Farm • New machines and technology save labor on the farm BUT… • Now there is less work in rural areas. • There are not jobs in rural areas when children grow up.
Fordson Tractor, 1917, Used by Luther Burbank From the Collections of The Henry Ford. ID# THF72058
Factories are Changing… Pulls to the City • Luckily for them, machines and technology have also created new jobs in the city in factories and industries. • If these people come work in factories, they have jobs and Gas-Steam Engine, 1916, Used to Generate manufacturers have Electricity at Highland Park Plant employees. From the Collections of The Henry Ford. ID# THF52667
From South to North • The southern United States, being mostly farms, experienced this pull from the more industrialized North’s cities. • Both African Americans and whites migrated from the rural South to the urban North.
Workers in Ford Rouge Plant Cyanide Foundry, 1931 From the Collections of The Henry Ford. ID#THF68318
The Great Migration • African-Americans were also pushed by racism and a lack of education opportunities for their children. • The movement of AfricanAmericans from the South to the Northeast, Midwest, and West is known as the Great Migration.
Mattox House in Greenfield Village. Built about 1880 in Bryan County, Georgia. From the Collections of The Henry Ford. ID# THF70905
Why Families Left Home
Image Source: Forrester B. Washington. The Negro in Detroit. 1920. Available via Google Books.