Ypsilanti in Washtenaw County, Michigan — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
Power on the River
Ford's Ypsilanti Village Industry
Henry Ford wasn't the first to harness the flowing Huron River.
In the 1880s, dams built along the river through Ypsilanti provided waterpower to mills processing paper, wool, lumber, and grain. In 1931, Ford bought property along the river on the south side of the city including a former municipal electricity-generating plant. He had the facility enhanced to power a new Village Industry that manufactured automobile generators.
Village Industries along rivers in southeast Michigan
offered decentralized small-part manufacturing and brought jobs to rural settings. The original Ypsilanti Ford plant's 63,000 square feet of space eventually grew to over one million square feet, employing over 4000 people, by far the largest of Ford's Village Industries. The plant closed and was sold in 2008.
You Auto Know
The Ford Ypsilanti Village Industry came to be called the Ford Generator Plant.
Erected by Motorcities National Heritage Area, National Park Service.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Industry & CommerceRoads & Vehicles. In addition, it is included in the MotorCities National Heritage Area series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1931.
Location. 42° 14.449′ N, 83° 36.677′ W. Marker is in Ypsilanti, Michigan, in Washtenaw County. Marker is on East Michigan Avenue (State Highway 17) 0.1 miles east of South Huron Street (Business U.S. 12), on the right when traveling east. The marker is along the Water Street Trail. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Ypsilanti MI 48198, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Michigan Avenue Industry (here, next to this marker); The Amazing Quarter Mile (here, next to this marker); Food and Drink (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); First Methodist Episcopal Church (approx. ¼ mile away); Michigan's Interurbans (approx. ¼ mile away); The Bomber Restaurant (approx. ¼ mile away); 220 N. Huron (approx. 0.3 miles away); Ypsilanti (approx. 0.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Ypsilanti.
Credits. This page was last revised on October 18, 2016. It was originally submitted on October 14, 2016, by Joel Seewald of Madison Heights, Michigan. This page has been viewed 197 times since then and 12 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9. submitted on October 14, 2016, by Joel Seewald of Madison Heights, Michigan.