The Ford Lamp Factory Complex
This complex was part of Henry Ford's "village industries" plan to decentralize production by building plants in rural areas. Designed by Detroit architect Albert Kahn, the early-1920s complex comprised a factory with hydroelectric generators, a dam, and a water filtration plant that supplied water to the village. A 1926 newspaper announcement predicted: "Flat Rock Will Grow Like a Forest Fire." The availability of hydroelectric power and factory jobs did spur the growth of Flat Rock and sustained it during the Depression. Between 1923 and 1938, 52 million lamp assemblies were made here. The factory produced a variety of lamps and lighting systems for automobiles, and World War II vehicles, before ceasing operations in 1950.