mexicantown-bakery-cornerIn the early 1920’s, the first Mexican families began to settle in the residential sections around downtown Detroit. They were drawn to Detroit because of the many job opportunities available within its rapidly growing industrial base. With time, they moved farther southwest into the area now known as Mexicantown. Today, the common perception of Mexicantown’s boundaries are Michigan Ave, W Fort St, Livernois Ave, and  Rosa Parks Blvd, With Clark park and the Ambassador bridge in the heart of the community.

The first Mexican families who settled in Detroit tended to not look back or talk about returning to Mexico. There were compelling reasons: many had escaped the Revolution of 1910; socioeconomic chaos ruled the day, displacing multitudes; and food, jobs, and peace were all scarce in Mexico.

Meanwhile, in Detroit, there was a company hiring people with basic skills and in some cases no skills, and paying $5 per pay, approximately $60 per day adjusting for inflation. Ford Motor Company was a big part of a local economy booming with jobs and brimming with optimism. People who moved to Detroit, Michigan, had the opportunity to become homeowners and provide a safe secure future for their families. There were no more worries about droughts if surrounded by the great lakes; and by moving as far north as Michigan, Mexicans escaped the overt and violent discrimination in the American Southwest. From their arrival in the 1920’s to today Mexican Immigrants have built themselves a strong vibrant community that is Mexicantown.