The pattern of abundance

4 December 2008

p833380_assembly-highlandpark

From a plaque at the entrance to Ford’s Highland Plant plant in Detroit, where in 1913 the first cars were made on a conveyor belt – and therefore one of the most significant locations of industrial society:

“Mass production soon moved from here to all phases of American industry and set the pattern of abundance for 20th-century living.”

I loved the notion of the ‘pattern of abundance’ and the implicit idea that it belonged to the 20th century – one of those phrases that means more with hindsight. It’s a wasteland now, of course.

The picture is from the University of Michigan’s materials on the role of the automobile in life and society.

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