A Legacy that stands
Published November 28, 2014
Henry Ford was a captain of industry and a strong chief. Henry Ford was a leader in many regards, industrially, socially, and economically. He introduced the production line, which changed industry forever. Socially, he changed the nation by introducing the 5-dollar a day workday. This even caused a migration. Economically, with everyone getting extra money from the 5 dollar a day, it rejuvenated the economy.
One of the many reasons why Henry Ford was a leader is intelligence in industry. He created one of the most important industrial advancements, the assembly line. This allowed Ford to increase production and it also made the five-dollar a day workday available. “The new technique allowed individual workers to stay in one place and perform the same task repeatedly on multiple vehicles that passed by them.” Not only did this help Ford, but it also was good for his workers. It didn’t complicate their job and made their pay go up. “Regardless of earlier uses of some of these principles, the direct line of succession of mass production and its intensification into automation stems directly from what we worked out at Ford Motor Company between 1908 and 1913” This shows that though some have had a few concepts similar to the production line, it never was as good as Ford’s. Ford speaks about an earlier version of the assembly line “A Ford car contains about five thousand parts—that is counting screws, nuts, and all. Some of the parts are fairly bulky and others are almost the size of watch parts. In our first assembling we simply started to put a car together at a spot on the floor and workmen brought to it the parts as they were needed in exactly the same way that one builds a house.” In an interview Ford said “Stevenson: To double; that is, you produced 500,000 cars, with the old plant, as we speak of it, as up to July 31st, 1916? Ford: Yes, sir.” Also, when he retired, his assets where over a billion dollars. This shows that not only was he extremely successful but he paved the way for many Americans to start their own business, or just how to be successful when it comes to industry or business.
Henry Ford led a social revolution that changed society in America forever. He paid his workers above the average wage compared to other companies. “Simultaneously, he introduced the $5-per-day wage ($110 in 2011) as a method of keeping the best workers loyal to his company.” He knew that by keeping the more skilled workers, he would actually get more profit. Also by paying people more, he caused a migration to Detroit, where Ford is located. Over the course of less than twenty years the population of Detroit had more than tripled because of Ford’s factories. This passage explains the tremendous growth that Ford blessed Michigan with “In the ten years following the outbreak of war in Europe in 1914, building construction had risen 350 percent, bank clearings were up 700 percent and industrial receipts had climbed an incredible 5000 percent” Finally by being able to make the Model-T, Fords car, at such a cheap price, it allowed America to adopt the automobile as a common necessity for the average family. PBS historian say this about his automobiles “The Model T greatly expanded Americans' mobility, knitting America very close together at the same time that it opened American sense of what was possible. So he liberated, at the individual level, the human spirit.” In this regard, there is no way to argue that Henry Ford didn’t only change Michigan, but the whole entire United States of America.
Finally, he changed the country economically. When you pay people more money of course the economy is going to change. Because of this people where able to purchase more things such as automobiles, hence the demand went up. Because he was able to pay his employees 5 dollars a day, they where to able to afford a Ford car. It breaks down to Ford paying workers, then the workers paying Ford. This helped the economy greatly. Of course this didn’t just help Ford, the employees where able to spend more and the sellers of what they spent got more money and the cycle again continues. Ford Made this all happen because of one quote that outs it into perspective “With his company selling Model T's as fast as it could make them, his workers deserved to share in the profits”
Henry Ford was an overall leader whether that be in industry, socially, or economically. It is fair to say that he changed the nation and the world into what we know of it today. If he didn’t make cars affordable or didn’t create the production line, who knows where our nation would be. Therefore it is easy to see that without Ford, the world wouldn’t be the same.