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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Dearborn Independent - Dearborn Publishing Company

                   (1926 Issue of Dearborn Independent from Author's Collection)

Henry Ford bought this paper in 1918 with the help of Fred Black (I briefly covered Mr. Black in a prior entry) and William Cameron. I won't go into a detailed history here as there are other sites that have that aspect covered pretty good.

Ford required his dealers to sell a subscription to the Independent with every Model T or Fordson tractor sale. However most dealers just added on the $2.00 yearly subscription rate into the price of the car.

It was through this newspaper that Ford spread his comments & logic about the Jews, with one 1923 headline proclaiming "Jewish Jazz - Moron Music" However these notions ceased after the 1927 Sapiro trial.

Henry Ford had his own page in the weekly aptly called "Mr. Ford's Page", but Ford didn't write this page. That was left up to William Cameron a Ford spokesman for many years who gleaned topics for Ford's page through casual conversations with the automaker.

Magazine content contained short stories by popular author's of the day, one page of trivia, historical stories, and in later years sheet music & dance steps- part of Henry & Clara Ford's push to revive old fashioned dancing.

From the beginning of Ford's ownership of the Dearborn Independent, it was printed newspaper style until 1925 when it went to a more conventional magazine format using multi color covers & sometimes artwork accompanying certain articles.

In the photo is a copy from March 6, 1926. It shows Henry Ford, president,  E.G. Liebold, Vice-President & Treasurer (he was also Ford's main secretary for many years), C.B. Longley Secretary(Longley was Ford's legal counsel in this time period), W.J. Cameron, Editor. (here again Cameron was a Ford spokesman and later on went to give a short speech during the Ford Sunday Evening Radio Hour.)

I purposely chose to use this particular issue of the Independent due to the fact that it contained Ford advertising. For many years Ford refrained from advertising his own cars & trucks in the publication, but slow Model T sales in 1926-1927 made him rethink his decision.

The Dearborn Independent ceased publication in 1927.

Author's Collection of Dearborn Independent Magazines dating from 1922-1927
Henry's Lieutenants by Ford Bryan