The Civil Rights History Project: Survey of Collections and Repositories
Oral history interview with Claude Harvard
Repository: The Henry Ford. Benson Ford Research Center
Collection Description (CRHP): Harvard's story is one that includes surmounting a number of discrimination-based obstacles in education, industry, and business.
Collection Description (Extant): Claude Harvard was born in Dublin, Georgia in 1911 and moved to Detroit, Michigan when he was nine. At fifteen he was accepted into the Henry Ford Trade School at Ford Motor Company's Highland Park Plant, where he became president of the school's radio club. At sixteen he became the first African American to earn an amateur radio operator license in Michigan and set up a station for the school. Harvard remained at Henry Ford Trade School for six years after graduating working on radio transmitters for Henry Ford's ships and conducting various experiments for the Ford Motor Company. Next, he was transferred to the Rouge River Plant where he continued inventing and developing machines and tools that resulted in numbers of patents for the Ford Motor Company. In 1938, Harvard left Ford to work for the Army Tank Automotive Command, retiring thirty-two years later.
Harvard discusses his mechanical interests and aptitude; his early and continuing interest in radio; his experiences at the Henry Ford Trade School and the Ford Motor Company; and his interactions with Henry Ford, George Washington Carver, Carl Johansson, and Charles Sorensen.
Origin Info: Interview conducted on September 13 and September 17, 1990, by LeNeysa Harris and Denise Grucz; recorded in Michigan.
Access Copy Note: Reading Room Use
Collection URL: http://catalog.dalnet.lib.mi.us/ipac20/ipac.jsp?session=131308K5038XW.98262&profile=henryford&uri=link=3100029~!2040706~!3100047~!3100038&aspect=subtab61&menu=search&ri=4&source=~!dalnettest&term=Oral+history+interview+with+Claude+Harvard%2C+September+13+
Digital Status: No
Existing IDs: Oral history interview with Claude Harvard
Extent: 4 sound cassettes (each ca. 60 min.), transcript (108 p.)
Interviewees: Claude Harvard
Rights (CRHP): Contact the repository which holds the collection for information on rights
African American inventors
Automobile industry and trade
Carver, George Washington, 1864?-1943
Ford Motor Company--Employees