Harry Bassett

Personal History:

Harry Bassett was born in Utica, New York in September of 1875. As a young man he aspired to be a lawyer, but found that working in manufacturing was a better fit for him at the time. Bassett got a job at the Remington Arms Company where he worked many years before being recruited to leave the company by Charles Mott. It was Mott’s idea to send Bassett to Flint to become the assistant superintendent of a factory he was opening. Bassett did many great things following his move. Eventually he would rise to the ranks of President of General Motors, to the surprise of no one who knew him. Bassett was considered to be one of the workers. He spent more time in the plants then he did in his office. He was known for being able to relate and manage workers better than anyone. In addition to the relations Bassett gained with his workers, he was also a great business innovator. His idea was that every new year model must contain new innovations and looks, and that those features must be throughly safety tested before the public got their hands on them.

Flint Connection:

Bassett Place with Bassett Park to the left. Photo Credit: Flint Expatriates

Bassett Place with Bassett Park to the left. Photo Credit: Flint Expatriates

Given Bassett’s reputation as a great labor leader, it is little surprise he was enshrined in Flint history. Bassett eventually had a park and the street adjoined to it named after him. Called Bassett Park and Bassett Place, respectively. Although both are still around today, they are nothing like the utopia they once were. There were times where this area was one of the best places in the country to live. Children would spend their evenings in the park playing hide and seek with their neighbors, not worrying about anything that one would now. Today the area is full of vacant, blighted, and run-down homes that have been targeted by vandals and scrappers, who steal the aluminum siding and copper pipes.

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