DIEGO RIVERA MURAL “DETROIT INDUSTRY” REMINDS ME OF MY GRANDFATHER



Over the holidays, I visited the Detroit Institute of Arts in Detroit, Michigan (the Motor City) and as always, I spent a fair amount of time in the Rivera Court of the museum. 

I love to look at the “Detroit Industry” mural painted by the Mexican artist, Diego Rivera, that graces the walls of this great hall.  I took the three small photos above of a few areas of the mural. 

The bottom photo is a family photo of my grandfather, a Polish immigrant and line worker (fourth from the left with hand on hip) in the Toledo, Ohio, Willy’s Overland factory in 1937.  Willys Overland built military jeeps for World War II and is now the Jeep division of Chrysler.

Although Rivera painted “Detroit Industry” for Edsel Ford, the story in the mural is the same for auto workers of all companies during that era in Michigan and Ohio who supported their families working on the lines. 

The Diego Rivera mural reminds me of my grandfather and the hard work of all immigrants. To this day, there is brand loyalty among my family so that “you get a talking to” if you don’t have a Jeep or Chrysler product in your driveway.

Do you have a similar story?  Do you have brand loyalty for a certain vehicle?






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