Why is the Ford Piquette Avenue Plant important?
This 1904 plant is the birthplace of the Ford Model T. It is one of the most historically significant industrial buildings in the world. It was here—before the introduction of the moving assembly line—that Ford became the world’s largest producer of automobiles. Henry Ford already had America’s best-selling car in 1906. But Ford knew the Model N could be improved. He gathered a hand-picked team in a small room on the top floor of Piquette to work on a new model. In October, 1908 they introduced Model T. The lightweight, durable, affordable car was a hit. The first 12,000 were produced at the Piquette Plant. By 1924, half the cars sold in the world were Model Ts.
The plant was purchased in 2000 with donations from the Henry Ford Heritage Association with the intention to not only preserve this nationally significant historic site but to transform it into a learning center and automotive museum that celebrates the spirit of innovation. It is a National Historic Landmark and is maintained and operated with volunteers through a non-profit corporation—not affiliated with Ford Motor Company. These volunteers dedicate countless hours in the authentic restoration of the plant and the interpretation of Detroit’s automotive heritage.
Phone: (313) 872-8759
Preservation of the building, public tours, and automotive events at the plant have already increased interest in Detroit’s rich automotive heritage, stimulated tourism, and contributed to the revitalization of the neighborhood. With exciting new exhibitions, continuing restoration, and enhanced outreach, the plant can take its place among the best industrial museums in the world. Its pivotal role in history gives this unique site potential for education, and encouragement of innovation and entrepreneurship.
Help Make History
Volunteer, become a member, or contribute to one of our projects.
- Rebuilding and restoring the roof with our “Raise the Roof” project
- Restoration of the Piquette Plant’s windows
- Re-creating and interpreting the Experimental Room to bring the birthplace of the Model T back to life
- Installing an ADA compliant elevator so all our visitors can visit the plant safely
- Ongoing security system, fire safety, and heating & cooling improvements.
Donate Now (Make checks payable to)
Model T Automotive Heritage Complex
P.O. Box 2127
Detroit, MI 48202