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How the Mackinac Bridge was built

I took a drive up to Mackinaw City this past weekend. Along the way I saw numerous signs warning travelers that the Mackinac Bridge would be closed on Labor Day from 6:30am to 12:00 pm for the bridge walk. Not only that, but I was able to cross the bridge four times that weekend. It made me

How the Mackinac Bridge was built2021-09-03T07:19:54-04:00

Could Dan Seavey be the meanest pirate on the Great Lakes?

Though pirates are criminals, usually quite brutal and violent, their lives are often studied, esteemed, and shown as an exciting lifestyle in many stories and Hollywood movies, from Captain Hook in Once Upon a Time to Captain Jack Sparrow. Many of the well-known pirates sailed tropical seas, but the Great Lakes has had their fair share of

Could Dan Seavey be the meanest pirate on the Great Lakes?2021-08-03T01:34:28-04:00

Was there once a king of Beaver Island?

Beaver Island is the third largest island in Michigan and has been a popular vacation tourist destination since the 1860s. It is well known for its beautiful beaches, awesome forests, recreational harbors and its isolation from the mainland. In addition to this, did you know that it has a colorful and unique history? This is especially true

Was there once a king of Beaver Island?2021-07-24T12:02:55-04:00

Traverse City becomes the nation’s cherry capital

Most Michigan tourist towns have a frontier history, and Traverse City is no different. The Cherry Capital of the World is young compared to other Michigan cities, like Mackinaw, Detroit and Grand Rapids, but it still holds a rich history. I recently brought my eighth grade students to the city for a field trip and was reminded

Traverse City becomes the nation’s cherry capital2021-06-03T16:35:13-04:00

Women’s baseball teams find a place in league of their own

It’s spring, and that means getting out and playing sports. While looking around at all the active ball fields, I can’t help but think of the classic line, “There’s no crying in baseball.” Many people know the quote. It comes from the timeless 1992 movie, A League of Their Own and tells the story of the All-American

Women’s baseball teams find a place in league of their own2021-05-07T07:22:33-04:00

Michigan’s second, yet only, National Park

Michigan is home to many beautiful national landmarks, such as the National Lakeshores of Sleeping Bear Dunes and Pictured Rocks and our three National Forests, Huron-Manistee, Hiawatha and Ottawa. We have a National Historic Park at Keweenaw in Calumet and one National Battlefield Park, the River Raisin in Monroe. We also have one very special National Park, Isle

Michigan’s second, yet only, National Park2021-04-08T14:30:50-04:00

The first king of the horseless carriage in Detroit

Michigan has long been known as the automotive state. With innovators like Henry Ford and Ransom Olds, we are known around the world for our automobile manufacturing. One of the lesser-known entrepreneurs that played a role in Michigan's automotive history is an interesting man by the name of Charles Brady King. He was the first person to

The first king of the horseless carriage in Detroit2021-03-08T14:42:57-05:00

The turbulent triumphant life of the Queen of Soul

Aretha Franklin is one of the greatest American artists of all time. Her singing career covered six decades and reached millions of Americans. Nicknamed the Queen of Soul, she earned just about every award a singer-songwriter can win, and on January 21, 1987, she became the first female vocalist to be inducted into the Rock-and-Roll Hall of

The turbulent triumphant life of the Queen of Soul2021-01-14T16:55:32-05:00

Did the Civil War have a little drummer boy from Michigan?

Winters are not usually known for great battles, as historically, armies used the time to rest and regroup. That is not to say the cold and snowy weather hasn’t had a drastic effect on warfare. Who can deny the importance of Washington crossing the Delaware on December 25, 1776, when the ragged Continental Army defeated highly trained

Did the Civil War have a little drummer boy from Michigan?2020-12-30T20:16:26-05:00

Building railroads to build Michigan

The chugging and mournful sound of a train’s bellow can elicit feelings of contentment in your soul. Even today, when a train is used mainly to haul freight or for scenic, vintage rides, it is a hauntingly beautiful sight to behold. It has also created many a ferroequinologist (train enthusiast). The railroads have been integral in Michigan’s

Building railroads to build Michigan2020-10-01T18:11:39-04:00

The ‘Boy Governor’ who made Michigan a state

Stevens Mason wasn’t born in Michigan. He didn’t die in Michigan either, yet he is very well-known for being a true Michiganian, and his influence on our state is undeniable. Also known as the Boy Governor, Stevens was instrumental in Michigan gaining statehood. The month of September has quite a few important dates in our state, and

The ‘Boy Governor’ who made Michigan a state2020-09-02T17:51:12-04:00

Taking a glimpse into the past at Detroit’s Historic Fort Wayne

The year was 1841, and the United States faced another possible threat from Great Britain, the same nation from whom it had won freedom only 65 years ago, and who tried again to retake it 28 years prior. In August of this year, Congress appropriated hundreds of dollars to build a chain of forts from the East

Taking a glimpse into the past at Detroit’s Historic Fort Wayne2020-08-01T15:19:57-04:00

Legendary Dorothy Zehnder inducted into Michigan Women’s Hall of Fame

Once you meet Dorothy Zehnder, it’s hard to forget her. She may be a tad diminutive in stature, but she’s definitely not short on kindness, charm or energy. In fact, the 98-year young matriarch of the Zehnder family still works full time six days a week! She is the co-founder and co-owner of the Frankenmuth Bavarian Inn,

Legendary Dorothy Zehnder inducted into Michigan Women’s Hall of Fame2020-07-27T00:07:30-04:00

Examining the legacy of Selfridge Air Base

America’s Number One Hornet’s Nest. Home of Generals. Home of the MiG Killers. These are all nicknames for a historic military base in Michigan. The Selfridge Air National Guard Base, formerly known as Selfridge Field, has been an important training ground for our troops since World War I. Today, it hosts many of our nation’s military units,

Examining the legacy of Selfridge Air Base2020-07-02T11:13:42-04:00

The storied past of the Soo Locks and Michigan’s oldest city

Sault Ste. Marie is a beautiful city in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, located on the St. Mary’s River, and home to Lake Superior State University. It’s also not far from the Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum and the picturesque sights of Tahquamenon Falls and Pictured Rocks. However, it is most famous for its Locks, which are an amazing feat

The storied past of the Soo Locks and Michigan’s oldest city2020-06-05T09:13:23-04:00

The life and times of Detroit’s beloved Belle Isle

Belle Isle is known to many in Michigan, especially those on the east side of the state, as a haven from the crowds of the big city. Located in the middle of the Detroit River, between the city of Detroit and Windsor, Canada, it is a 982-acre island park consisting of one main island and several surrounding

The life and times of Detroit’s beloved Belle Isle2020-05-06T15:00:59-04:00

Cuban treatment prompts Michigan men to fight in Spanish-American War

The Spanish American War is likely the least-known war in American history, and it’s no surprise, considering the fact that it didn’t even last a year. Needless to say, it did happen, starting in April of 1898 and Michigan led the way in many aspects of the war. In the 1890s, Cuba was under the rule of

Cuban treatment prompts Michigan men to fight in Spanish-American War2020-04-17T14:43:05-04:00

Pioneering aviator Michigan’s Harriet Quimby breaks barriers

All lives are molded, more or less, by our first teachings. True courtesy, sympathy, and sincerity are the most powerful factors for good in either home or public life.~Harriet Quimby March is Women’s History Month, so while researching a topic for this month, I began looking at notable women from the Mitten State. There are many illustrious

Pioneering aviator Michigan’s Harriet Quimby breaks barriers2020-04-17T14:44:27-04:00

125 reasons to visit Mackinac in 2020

While there’s hardly ever a reason not to visit Mackinac Island and the beautiful area that surrounds it, 2020 presents a particularly magical opportunity. Mackinac State Historic Parks is turning 125 this year and, as such, its team has created 125 days of events throughout the 2020 season, spread across its family of sites and parks. Many

125 reasons to visit Mackinac in 20202020-03-04T13:35:35-05:00

The founding of Holland, Michigan

Beaches. Lighthouses. Tulip Time. Dutch Village and Windmill Island. Hope College. The birth of WWJD Bracelets. City of Churches. The Felt House. Civic Theatre. An awesome Civil War muster in the fall at Van Raalte Park. Most Michiganders know the city that includes all of these things--Holland. Located on the shores of Lake Macatawa and just minutes

The founding of Holland, Michigan2020-03-04T13:42:16-05:00

Southern Michigan and the War of 1812

As alluded to in last month’s article regarding Mackinac Island, the War of 1812 has more than a few conundrums like being named after one year, and lasting for more than two. The primary reason for the war, impressment of American sailors, ceased to be an issue before the war officially began. Remarkably, the biggest battle occurred

Southern Michigan and the War of 18122020-01-15T15:25:53-05:00

Mackinac in the War of 1812

Since the Treaty of Ghent was signed in December of 1814, I decided to write about what happened in Michigan during the war. When I started my research, I learned there was a lot more to report than I had anticipated, so this month, I will just focus on the Mackinac area during the war of 1812.

Mackinac in the War of 18122020-01-15T13:01:06-05:00
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