My Daughter tells me that Henry Ford Senior was anti-semantic and favored the holocaust. This has been told to her by her Jewish Step dad. Is this true about the founder of the Ford Motor Co?
Sara Salzman Responds:Hi. I'm Sara, one of the volunteers who answers questions at The Holocaust History Project. You may receive other answers from my colleagues.
Henry Ford, Senior, was indeed extremely anti-Semitic. I refer you to the excellent book, Henry Ford and the Jews: The Mass Production of Hate, by Neil Baldwin.
From the liner notes:
"The same formidable willpower and organizational instincts that led to Ford's renown and success as the inventor of the automobile assembly line, the same obsessive determination and singular focus that created the Ford Motor Company, resulted in the destructive mass production of hate. With America heading into World War I, Ford's media campaign took off and continued well into the 1930s, as he published "The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion," "The International Jew," and for ninety-one consecutive weeks, an uninterrupted serious of venomous essays in "The Dearborn Independent." Declaring "I know who caused the war," Henry Ford became ever more convinced that these "parasites, these sloths and lunatics ... apostles of murder," the "German-Jewish bankers," were liable for society's ills."
An interesting note is that Hitler had a large framed portrait of Henry Ford, Sr. in his private office.
In his later years, Ford apologized for his anti-Semitic remarks, but many believe it was insincere.
I hope this helps. Mr. Baldwin's book should be able to answer most other questions you might have.
Thanks very much for your question, Sara
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Last modified: September 18, 2004