Atractii Ale Americii

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From the steely heights of wartime manufacturing, to the explosion of the post-war years, Detroit has seen its share of surges. Now Motor Citys cultural renaissance throttles ahead at full speed. Downtown is being reborn, Detroits architectural history, from art deco to neo-gothic, is being revamped, the artsy Necklace District shines again and roulette wheels keep turning in the nations most populated gaming city.
Forget the tired cliches about Detroits demise. Remember that Motown began here in 1958 and changed Americas music charts for all time. In the early-80s, the intrepid beginnings of techno happened in the warehouses of downtown Detroit and the present-day success of Eminem continues to shine a provocative light on this citys cultural world. Museums abound, the Hydroplane Thunderfest draws thousands every year and Detroits People Mover keeps the city in motion. From the native Anishnabe tribe to early French colonials to present day Motowners, something about the banks on the placid waters of the Detroit River have always drawn, and kept, a loyal crowd.
When you click on points of interest in the panoramic photo of 1906 Detroit in the right frame, text and images will appear in this frame. Each picture within the pages can also be clicked on to provide more-detailed, higher-resolution photos.
The Detroit pictured here has been washed away in a tide of technological and social change more rapid, perhaps, than any in human history. Click on the photo at right, read the text below, and witness the transformation of Campus Martius from grand civic plaza to post-Industrial urban backwater.
This is downtown Detroit, 1906, on the eve of the automobile explosion. There are no automobiles in the three-picture perspective at right, even though Henry Ford had driven his first model through the streets of Detroit ten years earlier. People and cargo travel by horse or electric streetcar, and pedestrians roam freely through the streets. Detroit City Hall (1871) is in the center with its wide lawn sloping to Woodward, Detroits main street.
The scene has an aura of civic idealism, equal parts bustling metropolis and manicured garden; the dusty streets, striped by vehicle tracks, lend a rural air. Detroits major roads radiate from this public square known as Campus Martius. (Ironically, the city had been laid out in the shape of a spoked-wheel nearly one hundred years before Henry Ford manufactured the first Model T. ) All distances in Detroit were once measured from this point, including the Mile Roads that march into Detroits northern suburbs. Woodward Avenue, Fort Street, and Michigan Avenue meet here, and Gratiot and Grand River start only a few blocks away. These are main arteries along which Detroit is still developing in the outer suburbs. As the automobile transformed the country, Detroit quadrupled in population (1900-1930). Concrete was poured, skyscrapers soared, and the retail district, seen in the right ...


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