Howell and Graves

Florence Alabama Lakeside Highlands Blueprint Plat Map Muscle Shoals

Lakeside Highlands located on Lake Wilson, Lee Highway, Wilson Dam Highway and Adjoining the Wilson Dam Property

DESCRIPTION: Rare original blueprint plat map of the Lakeside Highlands subdivision on the east side of Lake Wilson in the Muscle Shoals District at Florence in Lauderdale County, Alabama. With a small scale inset context map (1 inch = 1 mile): "Muscle Shoals District Showing Location of Lakeside Highlands." G.P. Nicolopoolos Owner and Developer. Date ca. 1930.

Drawn by W.A. Dealy, the map includes insets of a suggested tree-lined street section and a suggested business section designed by landscape architect Frank M. Button ("The highest type of Architecture is our aim.") Streets shown include the existing Lee Highway and Wilson Dam Highway (South Wilson Dam Road), and the proposed Center Drive, Shoals Boulevard, and Lakeside Drive, East Lakeside Drive and two bridle paths.

Henry Ford, the famous industrialist and founder of Ford Motor Company, had a vision in the early 1920s to build a "75-mile city" centered around the Wilson Dam in Muscle Shoals, Alabama. The dam, which was left incomplete after World War I, presented an opportunity for Ford to combine his various ideals, including pacifism, new urban design, opposition to the gold standard, and distaste for Wall Street.

Ford offered to lease the dam and nitrate works for 100 years, promising to complete the dam, build another upstream, and convert the nitrate plants to fertilizer production. He proposed using fiat currency backed by the dam's value to fund the project, which gained support from farmers but faced opposition from bankers.

Despite Ford's promotion of the plan, which included a visit to Muscle Shoals with Thomas Edison, the project faced opposition from Senator George Norris, who believed the dam would be better off in public hands. Norris blocked the sale in the Senate, and Ford's dream of a 75-mile city never materialized.

The dam was eventually completed in 1924 and became part of the Tennessee Valley Authority during the New Deal era. Although Ford's vision was never realized, Muscle Shoals is now a small city known for its recording studios and streets named after Ford and other Detroit figures. The story of the proposed 75-mile city remains a fascinating example of Ford's ambitions and the challenges of realizing grand urban design projects.

Kazek, Kelly. "Could Muscle Shoals have been a hub rivaling Detroit? Henry Ford thought so". January 14, 2019.

CREATOR: Howell and Graves



BODY OF WATER: Tennessee River

CONDITION: Good.  No issues.


ENGRAVER: W. G. Johnson.

SIZE: 28 " x 23 "


PRICE: $300


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