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tv   American History TV  CSPAN  November 16, 2013 10:20am-10:36am EST

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[ applause ] thank all of you for coming tonight. drive safely. good evening. >> thank you very much. >> very good to meet you. >> really glad to meet you. i never saw anything like it when i landed. there was broken equipment. there was bodies all over the place. they hadn't yet to bury anybody. either the japanese or the american americans. there were bodies without arms, without heads, completely eviscerated. there's a smell that you never get over. to this day, i -- when i drive by a cemetery and especially if they're using recycled water, i really think i can smell the dead bodies.
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>> one of the reasons they took iro jima is they would come and fly 1,000 miles but they had to go over iwo jima to get to tokyo. iwo jima would forewarn them by radar. they also had shoot planes there that could shoot down the injured b-29s when they were returning. in fact, it got so bad that a friend of mine by the name of general randal, who was there, he told me that they had submarines almost every 50 miles between tokyo and saipan to pick up the flyers. >> today at 5:00 eastern. part of american history tv this weekend on c-span 3. all weekend, american history tv is featuring ann arbor michigan, home to the university of michigan. the school wallace mos moved fr
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detroit to ann arbor in 1837 and fuels most of the city's economy. hosted by our comcast cable partners, c-span's local content vehicles recently visited many sites showcasing the city's history. learn more about ann arbor all weekend here on american history tv. >> today you're at ypsilanti automotive heritage museum in the city of ypsilanti, michigan, 30 miles west of detroit. where we have created a museum attempting to tell the automative history of our area here. and right this minute, we're in a hudson dealership that started out as a dodge dealership in 1916. became a hudson dealership in 1933. continued as a hudson dealership until hudson went out of business in 1957. what's unique about it is the dealership has the feel and the look of a 1930s, 1940s car
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dealership and has that feel because it is absolutely original. after world war ii ended, didn't need bombers anymore. there was a giant factory, the biggest one under one roof in the world, and two industrialists got together and decided to manufacture car. there was a pent-up demand for consumer goods after world war ii. they went tomorrow. created a company called kaiser frasier using their last names. and cakaiser frazier manufactur here until the end of 1953. 1953, they were -- sales had declined. they were consolidated into toledo, ohio. in that factory then general motors took it over and needed a factory after losing their hydromatic plant from a fire in
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lavonia outside of detroit. they moved here to ypsilanti to manufacture hydromatic transmission, and they took half of the factory and used it as an assembly plant. we've got general motors story here. kaiser frazer story here. major auto streets in the last half of the 20th century. hudsons were not manufactured here in ypsilanti, they were manufactured in detroit. we have a hudson dealership that's a very good example of car dealerships in the early part of the 20th century. we used the dealership then also to tell the hudson story. we're in the front of our dealership where the showroom was, where you come and look at it, at your car that you were looking to shop and buy. here in our showroom, we have displayed a 1933 terra plane. we're in a hudson dealership.
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1933 terra plane was designed and planned by hudson motor car company to compete with ford, general motors and chrysler. to compete with the plymouth car. hudson was sort of a midpriced car. in order to stay competitive, they went down into the marketplace to compete with ford, plymouth and chevrolet. visitors who come to our museum look at it and say, hey, that looks like a gangster car. the era of the gangsters was prohibition, 1930s. 1933 car. so cars of that period of time had this design. it's called a terra plane. kind of a play on terra earth and plane, airplane. you know, air travel in the early 1930s was becoming much more popular. so it would be a name that was really a catchy name that went with that period of time.
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when the car was introduced, they even had amelia earhart christian the first terra plane to call attention to modern progress in air travel. we're looking here at 1953 hudson jet. in the 1950s, it was the beginning of what we now call the compact cars. hudson also got into the compact car business and built his 1953 hudson jet. little bit smaller. lower priced than the full-sized hudson. by then, hudson had discontinued their terra plane car. so this was also a kind of re-entry into the low-price market. next to it, we have a 1946 hudson. 1946 after world war ii the manufacturers that had cars that were manufactured prior to the
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war. after the war was over, they used their bodies and their guys that they had used for their cars in the 1930s and maybe updated the decoration, the grill a little bit. but essentially they were what we call rebadged cars. they took their 1930s, early 1940s cars. no production during world war ii. and brought them out again after world war ii, when the demand for cars was pretty big. so by 1954, when the sales decreased, they didn't have money for engineering to come up with a new design, a new car. they also with record to engines, they had a six cylinder engine. and then in the 1950s, major manufacturers were coming out with modern v-8 engines. hudson just couldn't keep up with the engineering. the money to do the engineering for a new v-8 engine. and then by 1955, they were out
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of business. we're in the kaiser frazer/tucker room of our museum. what we have here is a collection of cars that were manufactured by kaiser so of the anner tafter the war major manufactures were able to come out with cars right away in 1946. they didn't do any design work. they just used their plea wrewa models. they had to do their design work. kaiser and frazer were a little bit late entering the car market. because they had to do design work. what they did come up with, was something new, fresh looking. an example of a 1948 kaiser which was the first body style
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that kaiser and frazer came up with. what's brand-new is what's sometimes called slab styling. which is a full flat surface on the sides. and post war years, that was something brand-new and fresh. kaiser and frazer were very well received. first of all, it was hard to buy new cars because there was so many people wanting to buy them. in addition to that, it was a fresh new design. they were only in business for six years but in that six years they sold almost 900,000 cars in six years. because the demand and because of the fresh new look. henry j. named in honor of henry j. kaiser, one of the two partners that create the company. in 1951, they came out with, again, the henry j., which was one of the beginning compact cars in the ougautomotive indus. it was a very low priced car.
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rather primitive interior design. surely is something that is stark compared to modern day cars. it was inexpensive. price tag on it was $1,499 in 1951. there had to be a demand out there, but it wasn't the savior of kaiser frazer. i think probably the reason to do it was expand their market base so they could appeal to more buyer. what we have here is a precursor of what we now call our suvs. it's a car but the design of it is such that the whole rear section is a hatch back design. and the rear here. rear window lifts up. what we could call now a days a
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trunk. the rear trunk area opens up. so you could use it to haul your lumber. if you wish when you go camping you could sleep in the back. sort of the same function that suvs now serve to the auto industry. in 1952 consolidated their operations. left ypsilanti. went to toledo. they boat willies overland in toledo in 1953. they actually took some of their kaiser dyes and transported them to south america and they manufactured cars like the kaiser cars you'll see here in south america for a period of time before they eventually closed up and ceased operations. back about 10, 12 years ago, there was an effort in southeastern michigan to tell
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the story of the auto industry. by then, you know, we're talking about the year 2000. 1999. by then the auto industry in detroit was, you know, 100 years old. had accumulated a lot of history. and people would come to southeastern michigan to visit the auto history of our area. so at that time, a group of auto people in detroit got together and petitioned congress to create a national heritage area. national heritage areas are subsidiaries of the national park service. they're all over the united states. they are like a national park. except it doesn't have -- they don't have defined boundaries. southeastern michigan, our heritage area, which is called motor city's national heritage area, is telling the automotive history of our area. it's a consortium of auto sites
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all over southeastern michigan. the art museum. the house in gross pointe's part of the auto heritage area. so we're a collection of sites. and we try to market each other to tell visitors to our area places that they can go to view our automotive history of our area. the industry has downtimes. but it also has downtimes. collectively, the auto industry has been a very important part of our region. throughout the weekend, american history tv is featuring ann arbor, michigan. our local content vehicles recently traveled there to learn about its rich history. learn more about ann arbor and c-span's local content vehicles at
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jacqueline kennedy's time as first lady was defined as never before by images. a young family entering the white house. international fame. and the tragedy of a grieving widow all within three years. watch our program tonight at 10:00 p.m. eastern and sunday at noon on c-span. and live monday our series continues. >> mrs. johnson as first lady loved to show off the texas hill country and her home. the guests to the ranch would often informally gather here in the den. various heads of state came to visit. a few things that speak to her connection to the room here. one of the things she wanted to highlight was the native american heritage here in the hill country. we do have a small collection of arrowheads over there. she had an eye for copper and collected various items through the years. and had gifts from various friends. mr. johnson gave a tour of the
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house in 1968 that was filmed. she featured the china was purchased. it was very important because it provided such a respite from all the turmoil of washington. particularly later in the presidency where the johnsons could come home and recharge their batteries and make their connection back to the land and this place they valued so much. >> first lady, ladybird johnson. on c-span. >> up next, author and historian byron price. in the years following the civil war. because of the rigorous nature of the job many men would participate in only a few drives. rarely did any complete more than five. he's also the director of the charles m. russell center for the study of art of the american west at the university of okma


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