Located in southeast Michigan, Eastpointe is typical of many suburban cities of middle America. During its development phase, Eastpointe's businesses and residents became involved in work or services related to the automotive industry. Structural changes occurred at a rapid rate as population density and diversity, technology, and economic changes impacted the community in rapid succession. When the automotive industry slowed, the income to Eastpointe residents, schools, and the city also slowed, yet the resiliency of the community allowed the city to survive.
Eastpointe was first settled in the early 1800s by Irish and German immigrants, who had traveled to a new country to find a better life. The inherent values of strong education, hard work, and love of home and family have continued throughout the city's history into modern times. In the past 200 years, many locals have become legendary as they strived in various ways to pursue excellence. As notable as the achievements of hometown hero astronaut Jerry Leninger and the athletic power of All-American Ron Kramer, there are also the stories of unsung heroes, which are now told.
Politics, Labor, and Race in a Modern American City
Author: Heather Ann Thompson
Publisher: Cornell University Press
Heather Ann Thompson focuses in detail on the struggles of Motor City residents during the 1960s and early 1970s and finds that conflict continued to plague the inner city and its workplaces even after Great Society liberals committed themselves to improving conditions.
Babson recounts Detroit's odyssey from a bulwark of the "open shop" to the nation's foremost "union town." Through words and pictures, Working Detroit documents the events in the city's ongoing struggle to build an industrial society that is both prosperous and humane. Babson begins his account in 1848 when Detroit has just entered the industrial era. He weaves the broader historical realties, such as Red Scare, World War, and economic depression into his account, tracing the ebb and flow of the working class activity and organization in Detroit -- from the rise of the Knights of Labor and the American Federation of Labor in the 19th century, through the Congress of Industrial Organizations and the sitdown strike of the 1930s, to the civil rights and women's movements of the 1960s and 1970s. The book concludes with an examination of the present day crisis facing the labor movement.
Once America's "arsenal of democracy," Detroit over the last fifty years has become the symbol of the American urban crisis. In this reappraisal of racial and economic inequality in modern America, Thomas Sugrue explains how Detroit and many other once prosperous industrial cities have become the sites of persistent racialized poverty. He challenges the conventional wisdom that urban decline is the product of the social programs and racial fissures of the 1960s. Probing beneath the veneer of 1950s prosperity and social consensus, Sugrue traces the rise of a new ghetto, solidified by changes in the urban economy and labor market and by racial and class segregation. In this provocative revision of postwar American history, Sugrue finds cities already fiercely divided by race and devastated by the exodus of industries. He focuses on urban neighborhoods, where white working-class homeowners mobilized to prevent integration as blacks tried to move out of the crumbling and overcrowded inner city. Weaving together the history of workplaces, unions, civil rights groups, political organizations, and real estate agencies, Sugrue finds the roots of today's urban poverty in a hidden history of racial violence, discrimination, and deindustrialization that reshaped the American urban landscape after World War II. In a new preface, Sugrue discusses the ongoing legacies of the postwar transformation of urban America and engages recent scholars who have joined in the reassessment of postwar urban, political, social, and African American history.