Synopses & Reviews
Surrounded completely by the city of Detroit, Hamtramck is today home to 24,000 residents, but its small size-just 2.1 square miles-belies its expansive history and the influence this remarkable community has had far beyond its borders.
Founded as a township in 1798, Hamtramck remained primarily a rural area until the early twentieth century, when auto pioneers John and Horace Dodge opened a factory on the south end of town. In just 20 years, the city's population increased by a staggering 1,600 percent. The majority of these newest residents were Polish immigrants, who brought with them a strong work ethic, a rich culture, a genuine joy for living, and an intense appreciation for democracy. Legendary to this day for its fiery politics, the solidly Democratic Hamtramck openly flaunted Prohibition, received a visit from President Franklin D. Roosevelt, strongly supported the early labor unions, and even served as a key headquarters for the Communist Party in North America. In Hamtramck: The Driven City, an engaging narrative combined with more than 100 black-and-white images will take readers on a fascinating journey into the past and breathe new life into the memorable characters and events, the conflicts and scandals that formed the city's distinctive identity.