Thursday, October 31, 2013

1995 Baseball

I absolutely love when someone walks up to me, hands me either photos or memoriabilia, and wonders if I would like to add it to the website.  The answer is always yes!  Yesterday, I was given three photographs, which will be added to the Fowlerville Historical Collection at the village hall, but first, I wanted to show you, my readers.
After doing a little research, the first is a baseball card for Al Kaline.  The second picture is how he looked in 1993 when he came to Fowlerville.  If you check out the photograph, you can see "Gehringer Field" hooked to the chain-link fence.  That field is where the Fowlerville High School baseball team plays their games.

The next photograph is a young Tom Brookens when he was a Detroit player, and following that is a more current-day photograph.  Not much has changed!

And then, the last picture given to me had a bunch of markings on the front and then the following on the back:
~~Feb. 1999 Tiger Fantasy Game, Marchand Stadium, Lakeland, Florida, Leon Vercruysse, Batting; Mickey Lolich, Pitching; Alan Trammell, Catching.
~~Rare Picture:  Lolich and Trammell never played together (different eras) (besides Trammell is a SS, not a catcher); Darrell Evans, 2nd Base; Jason Thompson, 1st Base; Al Kaline, right field; Pitch fouled off homeplate.

How cool is all of this!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

2013 Olden Days Storefront

Saturday morning, we had a late breakfast, or an early lunch for some, at Olden Days.  As we munched away, two men worked hard at the front of the building, painting and detailing.  When we were finished, we headed out the back entrance and walked around to the front, where there's still no traffic on North Grand Avenue because of the construction, and we were able to check out the progress (while the three kids with us danced and twirled in the middle of the road).

The first two pictures show where the door, to the left of the storefront, was open and we could peek up the staircase to the old Bell Opera House (you can search on this name and find all sorts of articles).  

 This picture shows the awesome new front to Olden Days.  What a great update:
And now, head back up to the first picture.  As I snapped the digital, I jumped back and laughed, saying to the young fellow with us that I saw a ghost.  He shrugged nonchalantly, but stepped back a bit.  We laughed a bit more about it and went on our merry way.  But, lo and behold, as I'm posting these pictures, check out the first one -- do you see a ghost?

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

2013 East Grand River Sidewalk

Work progresses on the East Grand River, northeast quadrant, sidewalk work.  The following two pictures were taken Saturday morning, as the construction workers labored away, but we were able to get a close enough look.

In the late 1800s, wooden plank sidewalks lined the sides of the main streets up to the storefronts.  Into the early 1900s, those planks were being replaced with cement sidewalks and always heralded as much-needed progress.

I might be getting a little ornery, but as some complain of the mess and traffic hold-ups, and anything else they can think of, I like to start blabbering on about progress and infrastructure upgrades and, I'm pretty sure, some stop listening.  But I think this is grand!!  The village council and staff are working hard to find grants and extra monies to improve the downtown area.

Just remember, in a few weeks, the mess and inconvenience will be a fading memory, and we will be enjoying new brickwork and asphalt.

Monday, October 14, 2013

2013 Coal Chutes Uncovered

Thanks to a local business owner, following are additional pictures of the coal chute in from of both Maria's and Edward Jones:

If you search, in the upper right hand box, on Edward Jones, you will find additional squint shots I posted of the basement below the offices.

And, by the way, there is caution tape around the coal chutes, so don't get too close!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

1898 Phineas Stewart

I received a call recently, the woman asking if I knew anything about a Phineas Stewart, b. 10.8.1794, d. 7.27.1898 -- 104 years old at the time of his death.  The name did not ring a bell with me, even if it seemed I got to know so many that came before us, through their names, while doing research.  

But with so much information gleaned from one headstone, along with the curious question of so many females preceding him in death -- five wives and two daughters, to be exact -- I couldn't resist doing a little extra research.

Phineas Stewart died a year before the West Howell Cemetery was established, but his monument stands. 

 On the front of the pillar, his name along with his first wife's name are etched in the stone:
 Then on the south side of the monument, two more wives:
 On the north side, another two wives:
 On the backside, or east side, his two daughters:
My curiosity was definitely aroused so I headed to the Howell Library for a dual purpose; family research and to see if I could find anything on P. Stewart.  As it were, I had luck on both counts.  When I reeled through microfilm from the Livingston Republican, I found the following article:
Curious, no mention of his five wives or of what he may have done for employment.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

2013 East Grand River Work

The work continues at the main four corners and I happened along an interesting moment on my way into Sweet Sensation for a chocolate fix (and a gift).  

I got into conversation with two of the village's DPW workers.  Old shut-off valves--corroded and barely usable--were being replaced with new ones.

Asphalt has been removed in the areas where there were recently parking spaces along East Grand River.  Eventually, bricks will be laid same as have already been placed on North Grand Avenue.  I can hardly wait to see all of this finished.

Friday, October 11, 2013

2013 Olden Days

North Grand was opened for Homecoming but then immediately closed again for more work.  On Tuesday morning of this week, there was an eight-foot hole in the center of the intersection and all of this equipment for the work at hand.
After checking out the construction, I also noticed the owners of Olden Days Cafe are doing something with their storefront entrance.  Old, and very dry, shakes were being thrown to the ground by one of the workers.  I asked what the change might be but got a noncommittal answer.  Guess we will just have to keep an eye out for what's happening.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

2013 Main Four Corners Work

As promised, following are three pictures taken the other day.  The first one is looking west from the front of the Edward Jones' storefront toward the intersection.
The second one is looking eastward from the same spot, showing how the road is closed and some of the asphalt has been removed.  (Note: Wayne Copeland, village president, can be seen at the far left as he inspects some of the sidewalk.) 
And then, another westward picture -- obviously the sidewalk is closed, or should it say "sidewalk missing"! 
Tomorrow, a couple of pictures looking southward from about the front of Olden Days on North Grand Avenue.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

2013 Coal Chute Hole

As work progresses in the downtown area, an interesting moment arrived for the workers.  While tearing up the sidewalk in front of Edward Jones and Maria's School of Dance, a sinkhole appeared.  As it turns out, it's not the Florida-type sinkhole, but one that is man-made.  

Below the sidewalk, a no-longer-needed coal chute was covered up.  Between the coal chute and the concrete sidewalk, there was a layer of plywood and some steel poles, but that was pretty much it.

I happened to be talking with Wayne Copeland and Kathy Arledge, from the village, and was allowed to sneak a bit closer to get a couple of pictures.  There's not much to see, but I can tell you, it would have been about a six-foot drop if anything gave way under my feet!  Here are the two pictures I snapped:

Tomorrow and the next day, there will be pictures of the intersection, both from East Grand River and from North Grand.