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Looking Back

Published August 9, 2017

WARREN — Warren’s history was written by many residents. But right now, it’s being researched and recorded by just a few. 

The members of the Warren Historical & Genealogical Society are hoping to change that.

The group is inviting any current or former residents with an interest in the history of the city and the families that settled it to join them.

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Published August 2, 2017

TROY — The over 160 quilts that will be featured in the “Threads” exhibit at the Troy Historic Village offer a glimpse of history and art pieced together and stitched in textiles. 

The quilts will be exhibited in the Caswell House, the General Store, the parsonage, Old Troy Church, Troy Town Hall and the main building Aug. 7-18 at the village. 

Loraine Campbell, executive director of the Troy Historic Village, said the quilts will be draped on furniture, quilt racks and beds. 

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Published August 2, 2017

FARMINGTON — Gentlemen, dust off your three-piece suits, and don’t forget to curl those mustaches.

Ladies, ready your pleated-skirt evening gowns and fitted bodices — it’s time to celebrate 1860s style with a 150th anniversary gala at the Governor Warner Mansion.

“Men have had pretty much the same style over the years, except that from time to time the number of buttons on the jacket changed, and sometimes the length of the jacket changed,” Warner Mansion Volunteer Coordinator Jean Schornick said via email.

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Published August 2, 2017

ROCHESTER — The Rochester Historical Commission is gauging interest in a new book it hopes to release this year called “Rochester and the Detroit United Railway.”

The book, written by longtime Historical Commission member Robert Michalka, tells the story of the Flint Division of the Detroit United Railway, featuring photos and information pertaining to areas on the DUR Flint Division route — including Detroit, Royal Oak, Rochester, Washington Township, Romeo, Almont, Imlay City, Lake Orion, Oxford, Ortonville and Flint.

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Published August 2, 2017

On Aug. 8, 1864, Adm. Farragut attacked Fort Morgan in Mobile, Alabama, which led to the capture of the fort by Union forces two weeks later.

What, exactly, does this have to do with Birmingham? That’s among the many questions the staff at the Birmingham Museum is asked.

People who drive past the museum might have noticed a very large rock at the end of the driveway that reads, “From Fort Morgan,” which begs the question of what connection a fort on the Gulf Coast of Alabama could have with Birmingham.

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Published August 2, 2017

With the dog days of summer approaching, we present a chill photo from the winter of 1941. A group of Green Glen Park visitors enjoys one of the park’s toboggan runs. Park co-owner and operator Bill Frys can be seen with the group, second from right. Today, most of what used to be Green Glen is part of Holland Ponds, near 22 Mile and Ryan roads. Green Glen Park was one of many parks operating along the Clinton River at the time in Shelby Township and throughout Macomb County.Read More

Published August 2, 2017

The building at what is now 24800 Jefferson Ave., near 10 Mile Road, was moved there around 1911 from Gaukler Point in Grosse Pointe Shores.  The Kramerhof (Kramer Inn) became a popular spot, especially because it was so near the water. From the very beginning, Mathew  Kramer hosted yacht and ice boat races, and people swam there in the summer.

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Published August 2, 2017

The Beddow family has deep roots in southeastern Michigan.  Around 1910, John Beddow, who owned a large farm at 27619 Lahser Road — at the corner of 11 Mile and Lahser roads — was postmaster of a town in that location. The town was known as Beddow as seen in this map from 1910. Thomas Ranier Beddow sold his father’s farm to the city of Southfield in 1958, and it was later incorporated into what is now known as Southfield. 

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Published July 26, 2017

BIRMINGHAM — On Fridays, nearly 200 local men file into The Community House in downtown Birmingham.

There are retired attorneys, board presidents, local politicians, corporate leaders and business legends. And the conversation that ensues is enthusiastic and full of grand plans.

But no deals are being struck.

As Bloomfield Township resident Bob Hayes calls it, it’s “chit chat.”

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Published July 21, 2017

School is out for the summer, and it is hard to tell who is the most excited — the students or the teachers.

At the Lakeside School on Jefferson Avenue in Harrison Township, in 1924 the student most unhappy to see school end may have been Virginia, in the center of the middle row. She had had to convince the teacher, Miss Williams, that she should be allowed to attend the school, despite the fact that she was only 4 years old, indicating that school was a special place for her. She managed to keep up with the older students in her lessons and so was allowed to stay.

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Published July 19, 2017

FARMINGTON — Fifty years ago, budding with optimism, Melvin Peters decided to move to Detroit from the South to create a better life for himself as a Detroit Public Schools teacher. However, the then-22-year-old did not realize that he had picked a tumultuous time — right before the summer of 1967 — to relocate. 

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Published July 19, 2017

C&G Newspapers

MACOMB COUNTY — The Lorenzo Cultural Center will present the exhibit “Flash Point: Detroit 1967” July 23 through Sept. 30. 

“Flash Point: Detroit 1967” — in partnership with the Detroit Historical Society’s D67 Project — comprises photographs and quotes from period documents and reports, and is accompanied by a series of presentations that reflect on the Detroit civil unrest that occurred July 23-27, 1967.

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Published July 19, 2017

C&G Newspapers

A riot. A rebellion. Violent civil unrest. Whatever you choose to call it, the chaos that erupted at 12th and Clairmount in July 1967 and ravaged Detroit for the next five days changed the city forever.

The experience echoes in the memories of those who were there, and 50 years later they recall in vivid detail the sights and sounds of their city as it was turned into a war zone.

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Published July 19, 2017

ROCHESTER — In this historical photo, Charles Case, the owner of Case Hardware, helps customers choose seed packets during the 1930s.

Case Hardware, located at 335 Main St., was destroyed in a fire in 1968.

A seed company known as D. M. Ferry and Co. purchased 113 acres in Rochester for experimental gardens in 1913. Later, it purchased 850 acres near Auburn and Rochester roads.

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Published July 5, 2017

These days, we take for granted having a fire department with the equipment to handle most any fire that might arise.

It might surprise people to know that until 1927, the Birmingham Fire Department was staffed by volunteers, and the force didn’t even have the necessary gear. As is often the case, it took a tragedy and the ensuing outcry for the then-village to realize it needed a professional staff and equipment.

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Published June 28, 2017

UTICA — On June 22, Utica kicked off its bicentennial celebration at Jimmy John’s Field with performances by local high school marching bands, remarks from local dignitaries, a short historical video, a vintage baseball game and a regular-season baseball game.

The four-day celebration coincided with the city’s annual Riverwalk Festival, but organizers pumped up the entertainment and the focus on history for the special 200th anniversary.

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Published June 23, 2017

CENTER LINE — Evelyn Herzog was born in 1915 and died in 1925. She was killed in an “aeroplane accident” and was laid to rest in the St. Clement Cemetery in Center Line, east of Van Dyke and just north of 10 Mile Road.

“There’s actually a newspaper article about it,” said Sandra Fortin, walking among the cemetery’s headstones and stone accoutrements, many recently dug from the earth, where they laid buried for decades alongside the graves of the dearly departed.

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Published June 22, 2017

DETROIT — The Michigan Department of Natural Resources, the Belle Isle Conservancy and the Michigan Press Association have embarked on a new campaign to save one of Belle Isle’s most well-known landmarks: the Newsboy Shelter.

Built in 1911 and officially known as shelter No. 1, it became colloquially known as the Newsboy Shelter due to its proximity to the nearby newsboy statue that was dedicated to the city of Detroit in the early 1900s by Detroit media icon James Scripps.

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Published June 21, 2017

Workers survey a train wreck near Yates Cider Mill in 1956. The Detroit-Bay City Railroad Co. operated the Yates Station, near Dequindre and Avon roads, from 1871 until 1964.

According to the Michigan Department of Transportation, in 1987, Michigan owned 872 miles of railroad. Beginning in 1998, the state began to divest itself of rail operations, and today, MDOT owns 665 miles of railroad.

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Published June 20, 2017

ST. CLAIR SHORES — Virginia MacHarg became the St. Clair Shores Public Library director in October 1959, after the retirement of Delia Waldner, the library’s second director. During MacHarg’s tenure, the reference collection was greatly expanded and, in 1964, the library joined the Library Network of Macomb. This allowed the library to increase the number of books available to patrons, at a lower cost. MacHarg also began the library’s Great Lakes and Michigan history collection (now the Arthur M. Woodford Local History Center).

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Upcoming Events

The events in our calendar were submitted prior to the coronavirus crisis. As efforts have increased to contain the spread of the coronavirus, many events have been canceled. Read More... On March 13, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer issued an executive order to cancel all events statewide that involve more than 250 people. It is recommended that you call ahead if you still intend to attend one of these events.
Bloomfield Hills
Grosse Pointe Park
‘Little Shop of Horrors’
8 p.m.
Pierce Middle School

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