Dearborn, Mich.
Thursday, July 20, 2006

Here’s something I don’t recommend: Trying to do the Ford Rouge Plant tour, The Henry Ford museum, Greenfield Village and the Automotive Hall of Fame all in the same day.

I didn’t make it.

After the Rouge tour, I hit The Henry Ford, a huge museum of transportation and other inventions of the “modern age.” The Rouge tour (which leaves from The Henry Ford) got me back there by about noon.

I had to rush and still didn’t see everything by the time they threw me out at 5:30 p.m.

A few high points.

  • Julian Stage: To my surprise, one of the first and oldest vehicles there was a stagecoach that once ran from San Diego to Julian. A little bit of home.
  • Prototypes: The Mustang I and other dream cars. The Mustang I was a two-seat, running test a small, sporty car that Ford displayed in the early 60s. It lead to the Mustang. There’s also a display of the 1986 Taurus, which at the time was a very significant car… it saved the company.
  • The Galleries: The Henry Ford is a huge place, with several second-level viewing areas to take it all in.
  • Baseball As America: The special exhibit when I visited was all about Our National Pastime.
  • The Home of the Future: R. Buckminster Fuller’s Dymaxion House.
  • Rosa Parks Bus: The exhibit “With Liberty and Justice For All” covers the evolution of American freedoms.

I didn’t make it to the IMAX Theater or have much time to check out the exhibit of Baby Boomer toys and stuff.

I did have lunch in the Michigan Cafe, which has a Michigan theme and is decorated with blowups of postcards and travel posters. The food was fair… about typical for an attraction. I saw the Weinermoble Cafe but it was closed by the time I got to that end of the museum.

Back home, I checked out the excellent web site, especially the online showroom of automotive design.

It’s on my list of places to revisit.

Mustang I
Development prototype Mustang I lead to the 1964 Mustang production car.
Cars on display
Significant autos on display.
Through the years
Fords and other cars displayed in chronological order.
The place is big enough to hold a DC-3.


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