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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



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History Column 255 Dave Petersen This week we have some very rare images courtesy of the family album of Margaret Gustafson. Her family were fishermen who lived on the "Island" that little slip of sand we know as the Buttersville Peninsula. Finding photographs of the fishing families, their boats and homes is difficult and I'm happy to be able to share these new treasures. If you have any stories or photographs you would like to share with our readers please feel free to contact me at 757-3240 or davep@blackcreekpress.com. Mail in care of the Ludington Daily News PO Box 340 Ludington Mi 49431 Pic1 This little fishing boat was known as the "Teaser" and is reputed to be the first motorized fishing boat in the Ludington fleet. It was owned by Margaret's Grandfather John Gustafson who is the third man from the left. The Teaser was built here in Ludington. Pic2 Quite hardy group of fishermen standing outside by their nets on a cold wintery day. Ludington had quite a fleet of fishing boats up to about the 1920's operating out of the harbor here. There are very few remnants of that lifestyle left, fish-town in Leland being one of the last where any buildings were preserved. Charles Wilson is third from the left and Oscar Wilson is standing at the far right. Pic3 Although quite faded this early picture of a fishing family is one of the few remaining reminders of a heritage forgotten by many and unknown to most. Pic4 This is an early view of the lifesaving station on the south side of the channel where crosswinds Condominiums are currently located. Both the lifesaving station and lighthouse were originally on the south side of the channel. Pic5 This picture is of the Engineers Shed that was directly to the west of the Lifesaving Station. The Tugboat tied up there is the Peter Reiss which was built in 1906 at Sturgeon Bay Wisconsin. The tug was 76 feet in length and was in service until 1934 when it was dismantled. Pic6 This house was reputed to be the last house on Buttersville Peninsula when the picture was taken on Sunday December 5th 1926 By the mid 1930's all that was left on the peninsula were a few foundations and a lot of sand where once hundreds lived and made their living at Butters and Taylor's Mills and at Fishtown.

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