Fordlandia! Where civilisation conquers the wild and untamed heart of the great Amazon rainforest. A city forged in adversity, the triumph of will and the product of the daring imagination of Henry Ford. This is America’s new frontier; a wilderness transformed by technology, labour and innovation into the prosperous hub of the world’s rubber production.
To some it was a daring vision, a glimpse of the future from one of America’s, heck, the world’s most farsighted industrialists. To others it was another sign that the wheels were metaphorically and perhaps literally coming off a once great car-producing giant.
The United States of America is a vast country, stretching from sea to shining sea, its land richly endowed with iron ore, coal, oil, timber and rich pasture. From these natural resources she has at her disposal all the elements for the wonder of the twentieth century – the automobile. Steel, wood panelling and leather were all sourced from home – a relentless flow of goods entering Detroit and other factory towns to be turned into cars, vans and lorries.