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Mason County Memories


"You can't depend on your eyes if your imagination is out of focus" ~ Mark Twain


History Columns are arranged by year of publication in the Ludington Daily News



david k petersen

History Column 233 Dave Petersen I hope you enjoyed last weeks column about the Fourth Ward grocery store started by George Hollick and Arvid Carlson back in 1917. I'd like to stress how important those stories are and how historically valuable are those old photographs that you might have tucked away in a shoebox in that upstairs closet. Your stories and family photographs are the most important part of the columns that I send in to the newspaper. I want to tell your family story and more importantly people are interested in the history and they want to see it. So I'm taking this opportunity to press everyone out there who enjoys our local history to take a look and see what you may have in the way of local historical photographs and stories that you might share. Did your family have a business? Did someone work in a local factory that is no longer here? Do you have vintage photos of parades, celebrations, grandpa's first car in 1950? Were there lumberjacks, farmers, carferry workers, school teachers? There is a story or two in every family photo album, in every shoebox. Help me tell your family story. If you have any stories or photographs and you would like to share with our readers please feel free to contact me at 757-3240, davep@blackcreekpress.com or in Care of the Ludington Daily News PO Box 340 Ludington Michigan 49431 Pic1 The Sainte Marie was built in 1913 by the Toledo Ship Building Company for the Mackinac Transportation Company. She served on the lakes until 1962 when she was towed to Ashtabula Ohio and scrapped. Pic2 Here is one for all of the mariners out there. Do you recognize this ship and can you place a name on her? Pic3 The Chief Wawatam was built in 1911 by the Toledo Ship Building Company for the Mackinac Transportation Company. She served on the lakes from 1911 to 1989. In 1989 she was converted to a barge. Pic4 The Grand Rapids as shown here could easily pass as one of our own carferries. It should as it was a Logan designed ship and a sister ship to the Pere Marquette 21 and 22. Built in 1926 this ship was owned by the Grand Trunk Milwaukee Carferry. She worked the lakes for that company until 1975. She was eventually scrapped in 1994. Pic5 The City of Petoskey looks quite grand in her white coat. Formerly the Pere Marquette 17 she was purchased by the State of Michigan, renovated, painted white and placed at the Straights of Mackinac to ferry cars and passengers over to the Upper Peninusla. She served in that capacity from 1941 until 1959 when the Mackinac bridge was completed. In 1961 she was sent to Ashtabula Ohio to be scrapped. Pic6 This is a wonderful evening view of Pere Marquette Lake. It was amongst a group of photographs that I purchased some time back and although the photographer was not identified I think that the composition, and the emphasis on the cloud cover in the photo make it likely to be a Harold Holmes photograph. Pic7 The Milwaukee of the Grand Trunk Line. The original ship was lost on Lake Michigan in late October 1929 during a fierce storm. The replacement ship served from 1926 to 1978 for the Grand Trunk Line and was chartered to the Ann Arbor Line after the Grand Trunks carferry service ended. She was eventually towed to Manistee where the ship is being preserved and is currently available to be viewed by the public.

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