Monday, August 2, 2010

The henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, MI

We headed to Ann Arbor, MI to visit relatives and while there, had to see The Henry Ford Museum in nearby Dearborn. Started by Henry Ford himself, this museum naturally features automobiles and transportation, but there is so much more than that!

All kinds of exhibits are located here with America as the common thread. Indeed, it has been quite a while since I have seen one of the wiener mobiles from Oscar Myer! Rick recalled seeing a couple when he was very young (a LONG time ago), but this was the only one for the past 45 years or so.

The museum featured a section covering agricultural equipment and this steam tractor was very interesting. These are huge machines and took a crew of men to run. Still, it was a huge advance over the horse-drawn era.

Here is another steam tractor that is designed to run in the rows of planted fields. These fully restored engines provided a glimpse of large scale farming over 100 years ago.

This is the famous Dymaxion House, designed by Buckminser Fuller as a prefab house that could be built in a plant, delivered to the house site and completed in 3 on-site days. Planned for the post WWII era, just two of these were ever built before Fuller abandoned the concept for lack of investors. It was fun to take the tour of the "House of the Future" and see what the dome house might have looked like.

Ford collected a remarkable group of steam engines from the late 1700's to late 1800's. These machines really powered the Industrial Revolution and in fact, one of engines on display was one of 9 huge engines that powered one of Ford's plants.

This dynamo, or electric generation system, was powered by steam to provide electricity. The cool thing about this one is that it was actually built and used by Thomas Edison in the late 1880's in New York City. To look at it, you would think it was a relatively modern system

Naturally there are many cars featured, including Fords, but also many other makes. This was President Reagan 's executive car that he used as President.

Of course, Rick wanted to see the cars, so we humored him. Look at this one -- the Blue Bird Coach Co. now builds luxury motorhomes, but their operation starts here with bus one.
1. I think we will stick with the Winnebago.

Speaking of RV vehicles, the Ford Museum featured a collection of old RVs. Look at this one dating from the early 30's. Even then, folks were thinking about the motorhome lifestyle.

Here were a couple of Rick's favorite vehicles -- an early 60's VW sedan and a 50's Nash. These cars represented a couple of the wide variety of vehicles that were available then.

Speaking of cars, here is the 999 that was built by Henry Ford and raced by Ford and Barney Oldfield, the famous early 1900's race driver. The car was named 999 after the famous railroad locomotive, NY Central #999 which was the first wheeled vehicle to exceed 100 mph. There is quite a history on this car and it can be said this car, and the publicity it gained, helped found the Ford Motor Company.

1 comment:

Chuck and Anneke's RV travels said...

We have been there several times over the years.

Still looks like a great place to visit.

Thanks for the memories.