Ed. Note: Listen to Adriene's report on the Janesville GM Plant shutdown here. -AG
Janesville GM Plant Closes
The Janesville, Wisconsin, GM factory is one of the oldest in the country. According to the Rock County Historical Society
GM purchased land in Janesville back in 1919 for the Samson Tractor Plant. In September of 1922, GM decided to start buidling cars there.
But in 1932 the factory was closed. The newspaper headline read: "Chevrolet Plant Closing Order Declared Final." The VP of Chevrolet Motor Co. told the newspaper that "the plant here will be closed permanently. "
But permanent doesn't always mean permanent. The plant reopened the next year.
The paper's lead: "Happy days are here again! That will be the keynote of Janesville Jubilee Day--tomorrow--when the joy and enthusiasm over the reopening of the General Motors plants here will find expression in one of the greatest civic celebrations ever staged in this territory. " Schools let out early the day of the jubilee, so students could attend.
It's the sort of happy ending that a lot of people I spoke with in Janesville are hoping for this time around. The plant is scheduled to close, for good, December 23rd.