Tag: detroit

July 8, 1969 – Dodge strike rocks Detroit; adds focus to civil rights movement
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July 8, 1969 – Dodge strike rocks Detroit; adds focus to civil rights movement

On this day in 1968 the Dodge Revolutionary Union Movement (DRUM), which consisted of black auto workers, went on a wildcat strike to protest working conditions at Dodge’s Hamtramck assembly plant. A wildcat strike is one that is supported or endorsed by the leadership of the Union of which the workers are members of, in this case the United Auto Workers.  At the time of the strike it was estimated that 70 percent of the workers at the plant were black, yet it was exceedingly rare for black men or women to rise to any sort of management position or higher within the auto industry.  The strike was observed by some 4,000 workers, lasted two and half days and prevented the production of 3,000 cars. In the subsequent Local 3 union election, DRUM ran as an alternative slate, but it did ...
November 8, 1909 – The first Hupmobile test drive
This Day

November 8, 1909 – The first Hupmobile test drive

On this day in 1908 Bobby Hupp took the first successful test drive of a Hupmobile on the streets of Detroit, Michigan with investors looking on. After the successful run they popped the champagne. The company was incorporated the same month and debuted their Model 20 to the public at the 1909 Detroit Auto Show.  Some years later, Henry Ford gave his thoughts on the car, "I recall looking at Bobby Hupp's roadster at the first show where it was exhibited and wondering whether we could ever build as good a small car for as little money." Once enough orders for the new automobile were received, production began. More than 500 were built by fall of 1909. The next year production increased to more than 5,000.  Above: 1934 Hupmobile Model J. By Alden Jewell.CC BY 2.0. Top: 1909 Hupmo...
November 6, 1998 – MotorCities National Heritage Area is established
This Day

November 6, 1998 – MotorCities National Heritage Area is established

On this day in 1998 President Bill Clinton declared some 10,000 square miles of Michigan the Automobile National Heritage Area. The site commemorates the role of the automobile in U.S. history. The location received designation largely because of metro Detroit's primary role in the promotion and production of the automobile. Since renamed MotorCities National Heritage Area, it covers covers parts of 16 Michigan counties. To quote www.motorcities.org, "We tell the story of how southeast and central Michigan “Put the World on Wheels.” MotorCities links the world’s largest collection of cultural and labor organizations, museums, archives, factories, auto collections and events to preserve the story of how tinkerers became titans and how auto and labor helped build the middle class wh...