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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

Article 328 History Column Dave Petersen This week I visited with Janet Marx who brought in her family album with some great personal photographs in it as well as some exceptional photographs of the interior of the Giles Boat Works that used to be in the middle of the City Marina. There were also a few other interesting pictures of the 1914 Million Dollar Harbor Celebration and of the lifesaving station. All of these pictures work together with the ones from other family albums to create some interesting tapestries of the events and lives that make up the history of Mason County. Another example is that there was a single picture of the collapse of one of the bridges that span the PM river flats, from another angle of the others I have collected copies of over the years. It goes to show how many people were out there with their Brownies taking pictures and how taking a picture from a half dozen albums goes a long ways towards being able to present a multi faceted view of local events. 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 Interior of Giles/Stearns Boat Works shows completed launches and personal boats of all sizes, if you recall the wonderful catalog that we had in a column earlier this year I see several boats that appear to be a match to the illustrations. The boat works was capitalized in 1909 with Justus Stearns as President. Pic2 Another great interior view of Giles/Stearns Boat Works, this one is showing all of the different parts being used in the construction of engines. Note the pulley system above that operates the machinery in the shop. Stuart B Kingsbury designed several of the boats produced by Giles Boat Works, the company continued as Stearns Motors until claimed as yet another victim of the depression and was subsequently auctioned. Pic3 The Union Tabernacle was directly to the West of the Library. Interesting to think about it being laced there but there were a number of open lots on the avenue in the early years. Come Get Right With GOD! It featured sermons by George T Stephans and a large Choir Chorus led by L.H. Wenger Pic4 The Parade in this picture appears to be the one that took place during the 1914 Million dollar harbor celebration. The harbor if you recall actually cost closer to 1.5 million by the time it was completed but no one was going to let a price increase mess with their naming and having a grand jubilee complete with a parade of boats down the channel. Pic5 Lowell and Clara Beach's Buttersville home where they raised their children. Marion "Min" Ruth "Poofie" and Robert "Bobby" It strikes me that we don't have Nic Names like in the past so much. In the carferry days all of the guys had handles such as Jibber Jabber comes to mind. They were used so frequently many did not know someone's given name. Pic6 This is an unidentified cabin in the Nordhouse Dunes area. It really struck me as being something significant. Possibly a building from one of the lumber camps, if it could tell us a story I wonder what it would say?

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