MotorCities National Heritage Area

Individual Members 2019

Glenn S. Anderson
Bruce Annett
Susan Avery
Paul Ayres
Larry Baber
Gail Bagale
Donald Baron
Robert Benko
Janet Bernath
Steve Bieda
Patrick Bisson
Charles Blackman
Terry Boyce
Wilbur Burkett
Robert Burtch
Mark & Anne Campbell
David Cartwright
Christopher Causley
Robert Causley
William Chapin
Raymond Christie
John Clor
Thomas Coles
Harvey Curley
Jim Curran
Chuck Dalton
Michael & Nancy Darga
Robert Degenhart
Jaqueline Dick
James Dimond
James Dixon
Russell Dore Jr.
Paul Draus
Kenneth & Helen Ehrenhofer
Gerald Elmy
David Elsila
Sandra Engle
Gayle & Reynolds Farley
Thomas Farris
Lila Fedokovitz
Nancy Finegood
Patrick Fitzgerald
Mitchell Fleischer
Frederick Flock
Gerard Franchina
Henrietta & Roger Fridholm
Jim & Jan Fry
John Gilbert
Peter Glendinning
Donald Graham
Ronald Grantz
Gerald Grzesik
Gary Gudes
Gerald Haller
Patricia Hallman
Craig Handley
Jack Harned
Roger Hayman
Mark Heppner
Frederick Hoffman
Sandra Horton
Al Houtman
Ronald Hutchins
Wayne Johnson
Tom M. Johnson, M.D.
Harold Jones
SGM Frank Jones
David Kalen
David Kalinowski
Bob Kellum
Larry Kelsch
Kevin Kirbitz
Gerald Klein
Jean Knowles
Richard Kollins
Henry Kosciuszko, III
Gregory Kowalski
Richard & Barbara Krueger
David Langdon
Lori Lanspeary
Sandra Lapadot
William Lapeer
William Lawson
Matthew Lee
Robert Lees
Keith Leigh-Monstevens
Patricia Lembas
Wade Leonard
Frederick Levantrosser
Barry Levy
Christine Lezotte
Jacquelyn & Terry Lindsey
Roger & Joan Luksik
Anthony Maria
David Marold
M. Peter Martin
Marvin Martin
Michael Mazor
Lynne McClenaghan
Janine McFadden
Thomas McIntyre
Gregory Miller
Ronald Mischo
Ann & Stephen Misterovich
Margaret Mouzon
Thomas Mudd
Kathleen Mullins
Thomas Mullins
Peter Murdoch
Julie and John Neilson
Bruce Nelson
Paul Neuburger
Joseph Neussendorfer
William Nikels
David & Joyce Novak
Michael O'Callaghan
Ramona Oliverio
Thomas Page
Rebecca Pettengill
Herbert G. Pfabe, Jr.
James Pita
Shawn Pomaville-Size
Arthur Pope
Kenneth Poynter
Allen Pruehs
Stephen Purdy
Lynn Raade
Donald Rash
Richard Ray
Charles Reavis
Thomas Remington
John Revitte
James Ridge
William Romanski
Dan & Samantha Ross
Richard Russell
Carl Rychlik
Harriet and Alvin Saperstein
Majorie Sawruk
Frank Scheidt
Sharon Scott
Jack Seavitt
Glenn Shagena
Albert Sheets
Randy Shelton
Charles Sinche
Michael Skinner
Robert Sovis
Gary Stroze
Sandra Studebaker
John Summerville
Gillian Talwar
Geoffrey Taylor
Dr. Doris Taylor Ph.D.
Dave Thomas
Mark Thomas
Nancy Thompson
Robyn Tonkin
John Tucker
Richard Tweddle
Norman Twork
Roger Tyyska
Douglas Wallace
Charles Watson
Mark & Lori Weber
Ed Weichsler
Robert Weidendorf
Jay Wetzel
Geneva Wiskemann
Nelson Zuchetto

Organizational Members 2019

ASBE Foundation
Automotive Hall of Fame
Back to the Bricks Inc.
Bomber Restaurant
City of Ferndale
The Cooperation Group
Corktown Experience
Cruis'News Magazine
Dearborn Historical Museum
Detroit Auto Dealers Association
Detroit Blues Society
Don Nicholson Enterprises, LLC
Eastpointe Gratiot Cruise Inc.
Edsel & Eleanor Ford House
Friends of Highland Rec Area (FOHRA)
Friends of Historic Fort Wayne
Friends of Nankin Mills
Friends of Rouge Park
Grigg Graphic Services
The Helppie Family Charitable Foundation
The Henry Ford
Henry Ford Heritage Association
Historical Society of Michigan
Julian Samora Research Institute
Kettering University
Lambda Car Club International-Detroit Region
Meadow Brook Hall
Michigan Firehouse MuseumMichigan Military Technical and Historical Society
Motor City Rockets
Oh These Irish Hills
Packard Motor Car Foundation
Partnership for the Arts & Humanities
The Pierce-Arrow Museum
Preservation Detroit
Project Arts & Ideas
R.E. Olds Transportation Museum
Red Ink Flint
Saline Area Historical Society
Six Rivers Land Conservancy
Special Collections and University Archives Kettering University
Stahls Automotive Foundation
University of Michigan - Dearborn
Washtenaw County CVB
Wayne Historical Society
Whaley Historic House Museum
Ypsilanti Automotive Heritage Museum

New MotorCities Automotive Themed Tours Now Available!

MotorCities is partnering with seven Detroit-area tour operators to offer public tours related to the automotive or labor heritage of Michigan.  The partnerships are intended to serve as a pilot program that can be expanded in future years both in metro Detroit and in other communities around the 16-county National Heritage Area. 

Tour experiences available vary from riding in a vintage Ford Model A to pedaling a bicycle or even kayaking in the Detroit River – all while visiting key automotive historical sites and learning the story of how the region put the world on wheels.

We are proud to offer the following experiences:

Antique Touring Company
ntique Touring Company - Tinkerers to Titans in the Auto Age Tour  (Returning in 2021)
Antique Touring photo RESIZED 450Hop in a Ford Model A and explore the "coming of age" story of the automobile during the first decades of the 20th Century from the vantage point of Detroit’s Woodward Corridor. Tours are offered every day, except Tuesdays, May 1 through October 31. Additional information can be found on their website:

City Tour Detroit
City Tour Detroit - MotorCities Moguls, Mansions & Automobiles  (Returning in 2021)  

Want to see how Detroit’s auto elite lived before they moved to the ‘burbs? Then join us on this mobile tour and step back in time to the first half of the 20th century, Detroit’s “Golden Age of the Automobile,”  a time when autoworkers celebrated unheard of wage gains, five-day work weeks, overtime pay and more, while automakers, suppliers, and investors amassed fortunes.

This scenic "Sunday drive" travels through the historic neighborhoods of Boston Edison, Arden Park, Palmer Woods, and Indian Village; residential areas designed specifically to cater to the country’s newly minted millionaires. So exclusive were these neighborhoods that the terms of purchase were provided only upon “application of those who could afford a home in this highly restricted section.”

Designed by leading architects of the day in a variety of architectural styles for the likes of automotive moguls such as Henry Ford, George M. Holley (Holley Carburetor Company), the Fisher Brothers, etc., as well as other industry giants and cultural icons, no two residences are alike. Upscale amenities range from 12 room houses (extravagant for the time) with sun parlors and sleeping porches, servants’ quarters, ballrooms, and double-brick garages to house the vehicles that made them rich. 

Motor City Moguls & Mansions tour is narrated by one of our knowledgeable and passionate guides, and transportation is provided via a comfortable sprinter or mini bus. 

While we don’t tour the inside any of the private residences, we do go inside a couple spectacular commercial buildings associated with our globally-significant automotive heritage. We’ll also walk down a rather unique historic pedestrian-only street which was part of a 1960s revitalization project by General Motors as an attempt to keep their wealthy execs in the city. 

"Sunday drives" originated in the 1920s and '30s with the advent of motorists  driving for pleasure instead of commuting or conducting errands. Continuing in this spirit, we’ll take a leisurely cruise around Belle Island, our lovely island park, and enjoy an included refreshment stop along the way.

Detroit Experience Factory
etroit Experience Factory - MotorCities Auto Heritage New Center Walking Tour (Returning in 2021) 
On this walking tour, guests will experience the past, present and future of the Detroit area, going back in time with a visit into the Ford Piquette Avenue Plant and speak with some of the innovators who now call these neighborhoods home. The tours are offered monthly May through September. For more information, please visit

Magical Michigan Tours RESIZED 400
Magical Michigan Tours - Henry Ford: From Farm to Factory Tour  (TBD for Fall 2020)
This bus tour connects visitors to actual historic sites that reveal Henry Ford’s life from his farming roots to becoming an industrial magnate. Guests will visit locations important to his story and gain a personal view of his life and impact on society in the 20th century. The tour is available year-round.

Preservation Detroit RESIZED 450
Preservation Detroit - MotorCities Downtown Auto History Tour  (Returning in 2021)
The two-hour walking tour, offered the second Sunday of each month May through September, will explore the early automotive history right in downtown Detroit, from the site of Henry Ford’s shed, where he built his famous Quadricycle, to the Dodge Brothers’ Greektown bicycle building roots. The MotorCities Auto History tour is also available as a private tour to groups from five to 50 guests. 

Normally, the tour will be a 2.5 hour walking experience, however it can also be conducted via the People Mover if requested by private groups.

Riverside Kayak Connection No background
Riverside Kayak Connection - MotorCities Detroit Historical Canal Tour  
Riverside Kayak Connection photoExplorers are going to kayak through Detroit’s Eastside. Highlights of this tour include the Fisher Mansion, stories of prohibition and the Purple Gang, the friendly residents of Detroit’s “Little Venice” and a view of the Motor City’s downtown. Tours are two hours long and are available seasonally on Saturdays and Sundays. Weekday availabilities and more information can be found on their website:

Wheelhouse Detroit

Wheelhouse Detroit - Auto Heritage Bicycle Tour 
Wheelhouse Detroit tour cropped and RESIZED 2O
n this 15-mile tour, guests will discover how Detroit became the center of industry. The tour takes in the Globe Building, Dequindre Cut, Packard Plant, the GM Detroit-Hamtramck (Poletown) Assembly Plant, Milwaukee Junction, New Center (old GM Headquarters and Fisher Building), and TechTown, where we will learn how industry is evolving with advanced technology. Tour dates are available seasonally one day each month. For more information please visit


SWD AHG Msthd 5.7.20


Welcome to the Southwest Detroit Auto Heritage Guide, a resource chronicling the auto legacy built by the entrepreneurs, workers, businesses, and unions of Southwest Detroit. 

1 FIRMS SITES WelcomeVisit Firms & Sites for the stories of key Southwest Detroit businesses and places. The recommended order of viewing sites outlined there offers a chronological arc of the neighborhood’s auto legacy.


2 COMMUNITY HISTORY WelcomeCommunity History puts into context the trends and topics highlighted in the stories of individual firms and neighborhood sites.


3 LABOR ROOTS WelcomeLabor History posts explore the emergence of the United Auto Workers union in the late 1930s, its achievements, and the challenges it confronted in the decades that followed.


4 WE AUTO KNOW MORE WelcomeThe We “Auto” Know More page explains our interest in profiling other firms. We anticipate paying tribute to the ties of various ethnic communities to the auto industry while documenting the histories of Teamsters Local 299 and the United Steel Workers Local 1299.


5 BUILD THE GUIDE WelcomeThis section introduces you to those responsible for developing the Guide and outlines how you can help contribute to future Guide updates.


6 MAP WelcomeThe Map harnesses Google Map features to permit viewers to locate the sites that are featured in the Guide. The thumbnails featured there allow easy access to our site profiles while identifying other important cultural resources that highlight Motor City auto history.



Detroit Historical Society
Lincoln Motor Car Company / Ford Local 600 Women’s Auxiliary Workshop

Detroit Public Library, National Automotive History Collection
DeSoto Plant

Walter P. Reuther Library, Archives of Labor and Urban Affairs, Wayne State University
Michigan Central Station Passengers / GM Cadillac Sit Down Strike Pickets


Map Test