Ford Motors moved its assembly plant to Old East Dallas in 1925, when it opened at 5100 E. Grand Ave. It was big business at the time, with more than 100 employees building all of the latest models. Each car produced was finished with a “Built in Texas by Texans” sticker, which became the envy of the nation since no other cars were built in Texas at the time. Texans who had moved away begged for a sticker, but only cars produced on East Grand earned that badge. When WWII broke out, production switched to war vehicles and 94,345 Jeeps and 6,286 military trucks were manufactured at the plant. After 3 million vehicles, it closed in 1970 when it could no longer keep up with modern engineering, taking $17.5 million in payroll dollars out of the city at the time. In the undated photo at left, the plant marks the 2 millionth car coming off the assembly line, a Ford Fairlane 500. Today the site contains commercial buildings.


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