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Mason County Memories

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

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Article 327 History Column Dave Petersen Last week we were looking at some long past businesses and we will continue along that line this week as well. If you have photographs to share with our readers please contact me at 757-3240, e-mail to davep@blackcreekpress.com, or mail in care of the Ludington Daily News, P.O. Box 340, Ludington, MI, 49431 Pic1 This is a nice birdseye view of the area directly behind the freight shed. You can clearly see South James street and the St. Simons Church, Rectory and School. The back of the Johnson building that houses the brew pub and a number of homes and other businesses are visible. Directly below is the freight yard. Pic2 While it doesn't feel like it with the last storm that came through, the Fourth of July is coming fast. Maybe the snow will be gone by then? You can see a line of Milk trucks coming down the avenue, the third one down is driven by Earl Taylor as they move past the Elks building on Ludington Avenue. The Elks is being converted to house the Sand Castle children's museum and sports a nice bright new awning today. Pic3 Another parade picture and this one is showing what I remember as Newberg's Shell Station on the corner and the building in the background at one time was home to the Fire Escape Youth Center. The float in the foreground is the Carrom Company showcasing the hospital furniture they built at one time. Pic4 The National Bank building has housed many businesses over the years. As you look down South James street you can spot Schohl's Jewelry Store and Schnieder's Store for Men. Ludington used to be the home of many competing clothing stores for both men and women. Pic5 We can see three vanished icons of Ludington's past in this view. The bathing beauties of the Star Watch Case are showing off for the crowd on a flatbed truck owned by the Ludington Lumber Company. In the background you can see Hansen's Pharmacy. A trip downtown to do your shopping and errands took you to a dozen different businesses by the time you were through. It was as much a social trip as anything. Just as expressed in the Cheers opening, everybody knew your name. Pic6 The biggest little store in town where they cut the price and not the quality was Gibbs downtown in Ludington. It seems we have gone a bit backwards in the 21st century. We have become consumers in places where no one knows our name, and the mantra that David Gibbs lived by 70 years ago seems to be topsy turvey.

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