Adam Hats building at 2700 Canton St. Photo courtesy of Google Maps.

The first Ford assembly plant in Dallas was built in 1914, less than a decade after founder Henry Ford built the first Model T.

It was located in Deep Ellum where the Adam Hats building is, at 2700 Canton St. The four-story, red brick building was designed by John Graham, the architect behind many of Ford’s assembly plants.

By 1925, Ford had outgrown its space, so the company moved to a new spot at 5200 E. Grand Ave. near Fair Park. This location offered plenty of room and convenient access to the rail yard. Most of the cars produced there left with a sticker that read “Built in Texas by Texans.”

The plant shut down 1933-34 because of the Great Depression. And during World War II, Ford plants were used to build military vehicles, airplanes, bombers, armored tanks, generators and more.

Normal production at the Dallas plant resumed in 1945 with production of the 1946 model.

The plant closed Feb. 20, 1970, according to the City of Dallas Office of Historic Preservation. Below, see footage of the plant and hear from its workers when it closed.


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