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Ronald Ahrens

resident mechanic As a child, Betsy Ancker-Johnson said she spent more time taking apart her bicycle than riding it. Growing up in the Depression era, “we didn’t have a lot of new things,” she said. // Courtesy of Alamy

New Standards

Betsy Ancker-Johnson had much to learn upon joining General Motors as vice president for environmental activities in February of 1979. The distinguished physicist, 51 years old, had worked in academia, industry, and government while...
Bridging the Divide - The Gordie Howe International Bridge that will connect Detroit and Windsor is scheduled to open in late 2024. Once operational, it will compete with the privately owned Ambassador Bridge, which opened in 1929. // Courtesy of the Gordie Howe International Bridge Project

Balancing Act

On a recent Tuesday, Bridget Espinosa was fighting the onset of her annual springtime allergies and trying not to cough too loudly in La Palapa del Parian, where she was taking a midmorning break....
typeface William Burt introduced the “typographer,” a forerunner of the typewriter, in 1829. // Courtesy of Alamy

Ore Fathers

As deputy surveyor for the Northwest Territory, which in 1833 included all the lands north of the Ohio River and east of the Mississippi River, William Burt kept running into the same problem with...
Edsel Ford, Charlie Chaplin, Henry Ford

Celluloid Service

Starting more than a century ago, Detroit’s automakers commissioned thousands of films that rivaled Hollywood’s output through the 1950s.
Western Market

Market Play

Before grocery stores, open-air markets were the major source of food in Detroit.
Detroit Photo Engraving Co. workshop

The Daily Beat

From tearsheets to broadsheets to tabloids, Detroit’s early newspapers covered daily life, business, politics, sports, and, over time, national and global news. But now, as print gives way to digital, how will the papers thrive?
Albert Kahn

Master of Modernism

Albert Kahn revolutionized industry, yet never lost sight of classical architecture.
Nankin Mills

Majestic Byways

Wayne County’s Jesse Merle Bennett showed the nation how to develop well-designed vistas along its burgeoning motorways.
Mat Ishbia

Shore Up

Mat Ishbia transformed United Wholesale Mortgage from a local player in metro Detroit to the nation's second-largest mortgage lender. Then the COVID-19 crisis hit.
Helene Rother

Open Design

Helene Rother may be best-known for her pioneering work in automotive interiors, but her creative talents spanned stained glass to silverware.