By Jeffrey Buck
Chrysler hit a home run this past Super Bowl with their two minute spot that told the story of Detroit and its auto industry. The commercial starring Eminem and the Chrysler 200 was buzzing on the World Wide Web for days. I admit that I’ve watched it probably over ten times by now and it still gives me goosebumps. There is one thing though that the commercial doesn’t mention that I think too many people that aren’t from Detroit, its surrounding cities or the state of Michigan seem to forget. The factories that turned out automobiles switched into a different gear come World War II. It’s amazing to think what was built here in Detroit by both men and women that supported the war efforts so many miles away.
Take a look at the photograph entitled “The New Chrysler: 1942.”
1942. Chrysler Corporation plant at Highland Park, Detroit. “Conversion. Here, in a former automobile plant, 40 mm. anti-aircraft gun barrels are machined and made ready for front-line duty. Since they must shoot fast-moving objects at great distances, they must be finished to the very finest of tolerances.” Medium format negative by Alfred Palmer for the Office of War Information.