Henry Ford's War on Jews and the Legal Battle Against Hate Speech

By Victoria Saker Woeste

Henry Ford is remembered in American lore because the final entrepreneur—the guy who invented assembly-line production and made autos cheap. principally forgotten is his aspect profession as a writer of antisemitic propaganda. this can be the tale of Ford's possession of the Dearborn autonomous, his involvement within the defamatory articles it ran, and the 2 Jewish attorneys, Aaron Sapiro and Louis Marshall, who every one attempted to prevent Ford's war.

In 1927, the case of Sapiro v. Ford transfixed the state. in an effort to finish the embarrassing litigation, Ford apologized for the only factor he may by no means have misplaced on in court docket: the offense of hate speech.

Using never-before-discovered facts from data and personal family members collections, this research finds the intensity of Ford's involvement in each point of this situation and explains why Jewish civil rights attorneys and non secular leaders have been deeply divided over the right way to deal with Ford.

Editorial Reviews
"Thoroughly researched and ably written, Henry Ford's battle on Jews lines [Aaron] Sapiro's valiant try and safeguard not just his reliable identify yet that of the Jewish people."—Rafael Medoff, magazine of yankee Studies

"The e-book turns out to be useful for the historian, scholars of legislation, and scholars of yankee Jewish history."—Chaim Seymour, organization of Jewish Libraries (AJL) Newsletter

"Drawing on new facts from records and personal kinfolk collections, this research information the intensity of Ford's involvement in each element of this example and explains why Jewish civil rights legal professionals and spiritual leaders have been deeply divided over the best way to deal with Ford."—Law & Social Inquiry

"Victoria Saker Woeste's Henry Ford's battle on Jews and the felony conflict opposed to Hate Speech contributes considerably to our figuring out of the dramatic libel lawsuit introduced through Aaron Sapiro opposed to the yankee car pioneer. Woeste's meticulously researched e-book thoughtfully examines the advanced conditions and personalities in the back of the case, the intricacies of the trial, and the consequences of its answer . . . Woeste's ebook deals a desirable and worthwhile account of Sapiro v. Ford, and what the case teaches us approximately hate speech, libel legislation, and the anti-Jewish campaign of an American icon."—Jessica Cooperman, American Studies

"A significant new booklet by means of American Bar beginning pupil Victoria Saker Woeste, Henry Ford's warfare on Jews and the felony conflict opposed to Hate Speech offers a startling new interpretation of a watershed episode within the lifetime of Henry Ford. . . never-before chanced on proof. . . new insights."—LegalNews.com

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Inside of a 12 months of the Armistice, “copies of the Protocols have been being circulated within the optimum echelons of [U. S. ] govt. ” one of the favorite american citizens who knew of its life or laid their arms on a replica have been ideal court docket Justice Louis Brandeis; former justice and 1916 Republican presidential nominee Charles Evans Hughes; Louis Marshall, American Jewish Committee president; and the individuals of a Senate committee taking a look into “German and Bolshevik propaganda actions. ” It was once the peak of the pink Scare; worry and suspicion saturated the air. sixty six The Protocols got here to Henry Ford via a byzantine chain of occasions and folks that eventually ran via a former professional of the Imperial Russian executive, Boris Brasol-Brazhkovsky. Brasol used to be dwelling within the usa on the time of the Revolution. The overthrow of the tsar so disgusted him that he resigned his publish and remained in exile. After serving as a exclusive adviser to U. S. army intelligence throughout the struggle, he took a task with the U. S. struggle exchange Board in 1919, the place he made pals with lawyer normal A. Mitchell Palmer and critical nativists within the battle division. From this perch, Brasol insinuated himself into the place of work of an army intelligence officer named Harris Houghton, provided Houghton’s assistant with a replica of the Protocols, after which helped translate the ebook into English. by some means, he and Liebold discovered Ford’s Megaphone   each one other—no one turns out to understand simply how—but Liebold started bringing Brasol into his self assurance and onto the Independent’s masthead in early 1919. sixty seven Liebold quietly emerged because the architect of Ford’s antisemitic crusade. His connection to Brasol introduced him into touch with different Europeans— Germans in addition to Russians—who have been trafficking within the Protocols and different kinds of antisemitic propaganda after the Russian Revolution and the top of the struggle. steadily, Liebold all started development a community of hyperlinks and fellow tourists on whom he may well demand corroborating info. those advancements have been an convey problem to Pipp and to the course during which he deliberate to take the newspaper. either, even though, have been susceptible. The “Fordized” model of a mass-circulation periodical used to be a bland, unremarkable product. Accepting no ads, the paper was once offered by way of road proprietors and allotted via Ford dealerships. a few buyers groused that the money will be larger spent on enhancing the version T. via 1927, the autonomous might do as badly because the vehicle, wasting greater than $2 million in all, yet Ford didn't care. He meant to make the self sufficient the typical parents’ primer on American tradition, literature, and political philosophy. The autonomous can have provided a window onto Ford’s brain, however it didn't make a lot of a distinct segment for itself in a crowded marketplace, discovering as “a susceptible, hybrid edition of the Saturday night submit, Collier’s, and Harper’s Weekly. ”68 nonetheless, Pipp’s demanding situations went past purely penetrating the newspaper industry in a down financial system after the struggle.

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