Monday, March 9, 2015

The Trial of Henry Ford

Former LHB Guest Blogger Victoria Saker Woeste has alerted us to the trailer for the documentary The Trial of Henry Ford, which when completed, will take up the trial that figured prominently in her book Henry Ford's War on the Jews.  (Caution: among the disturbing images in the trailer is that of a lynching.)  The documentarian, Michael Rose, explains:
 This is the trailer for our film, currently gearing up for production, that's about one of the most important libel lawsuits in American history, Sapiro v. Ford. This case pitted the richest and most famous man in America, Henry Ford, against an idealistic young lawyer, Aaron Sapiro, who was making a name for himself organizing farmers into cooperative associations during the early 1920s. Ford saw Sapiro as the vanguard of an international Jewish conspiracy bent on taking over America. Ford used his newspaper, The Dearborn Independent, to conduct a smear campaign against him. After failing to convince Ford to retract his wild allegations, Sapiro sued him in Federal Court for libel. This set in motion a two year-long roller coaster ride of battles and skirmishes in the courts and in the press until Ford finally publicly apologized in 1927.

This film will chronicle the characters, the actions, the issues and the themes of the trial that are embedded in the twisted history of American race relations, ethnicity and class.