Many people in Flint have seen an automobile assembly line in motion at one point or another, but I'm willing to bet there are very few (if any) people left that saw one in 1936.

I've always been somewhat fascinated with old Flint. Perhaps it's because I've had a front row seat for the gradual decline of the former automotive boomtown for my entire life. Seriously, we had the country's highest median income among workers 35 and below in 1980 --  the year I was born --  and it's been downhill ever since. I guess it's just intriguing to see reminders that this was once a great city with a bright future, and now, well... you know.

The automotive industry was at the center of both our success and failure as a city. It was all good when they were thriving here, but once automation and outsourcing began -- the whole operation went south... and some of the operations literally went south to Mexico. Before technology started doing most the heavy lifting, there were a bunch of hard-working, blue collar Michiganders slapping Chevys together as far back as the late 1800s. While there weren't any cameras around back then, you can take a look at what an assembly line looked like 80 years ago in the video below.


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