Now that Edison has gone into the world of light, there is only one American left who is known in every corner of the world. The name Henry Ford is a label of the man; he might just as well have been called John Doe or Richard Doe, John Smith or Henry Ford; and yet this name expresses his character and habits more accurately than a spectacular appellation. For, apart from his genius and the wealth it created, he is an average American; sensible, practical, honest and honourable, faithful to his ideals.
In 1931 Henry Ford made my family and me a magnificent present. He gave us one entire day. It often happens, especially in America, that the richer a man is in money, the poorer he is in time. I know prominent men who literally have not one hour to spare; they cannot afford it. Well, Mr. and Mrs. Henry Ford sent word to us that they would set aside for our pleasure one whole day; and it happened to be perfect autumn weather.
About nine o'clock we all met in a suburb of Detroit at the house where Henry Ford was born. This modest structure of wood he has preserved and kept in perfect condition. Outside a dazzling white, inside spotless order. Kitchen, bedrooms, parlour, and workroom are exactly in the condition that they were in 1863. Stoves, lamps, candles, wallpaper, pictures, all correct. We saw the room where he was born; and the first lathe he used, the first watches which he had taken apart and repaired. From earliest childhood he loved to see the 'wheels go round.'