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The first moving assembly line at Henry Ford's automobile factory in Detroit, Michigan


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Do you know why Detroit is known as "Motor City?"

Long recognized as the historic heart of the American automotive industry, Detroit took on the nickname "Motor City." The state's automotive industry provided the model for mass production that other industries later adopted. Henry Ford pioneered the use of the assembly line in manufacturing automobiles. Using conveyor belts, factory workers put different parts together quickly and relatively inexpensively -- like a mechanical puzzle. Ford's Model-T was the first car produced in this fashion, and it could be assembled more quickly and consistently than had ever been possible before. Do you know why?

Each person who works on an assembly line is responsible for doing the same job on each car. For example, someone might be responsible only for attaching the rearview mirror. This person would do the task so many times that he or she would become an expert at it and be able to do it very quickly.

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