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June 12, 1992 - Image 22

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1992-06-12

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

CLOSE-UP

N

(I)

VV

I t h $ 1 0 in his pocket

Holocaust survivor Harold

Perlman came from Poland to Detroit in 1947 in search of a better life. +

Yet finding employment was not easy. He took a job at Chrysler Corp.,

where, for $40 a week, he helped assemble cars on a production line. +

"We didn't have much money, but we made a living," recalls his widow, Sylvia, who now

lives in Miami Beach. "He was a very, very hard-working man. But it wasn't easy work for

him." + Not many Jews worked on the line, Sylvia Perlman says, adding that her husband

was anxious to leave Chrysler. After a year, he quit the factory job, opting to work at a

relative's furniture store. Several years later, he started a home remodeling business. +

Mr. Perlman's story mirrors tales of many immigrants. Some arrived in Detroit in the

early 1900s, lured by Henry Ford's offer to pay exorbitant $ 5-a-day wages. + Yet many

found that assembly line jobs at the time were tough to secure. Henry Ford was anti-

Semitic, and many Jews couldn't get work even on the line. + Some did. + Here is a

contemporary look at the lives of assembly line workers as told by three Jewish men —

Richard Feldman, Jerry Weinhaus and Bernie Hamburger— who work at the Ford Truck

Plant in Wayne, which produces the Bronco and Ford pickup.

BY KIMBERLY LIFTON / PHOTOS BY GLENN TRIEST

22

FRIDAY, JUNE 12, 1992

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