Welcome to the Catalog page of The Fowlerville Observer!

First I would like to introduce myself. My name is Audrey Glass and I am currently working on a project for the Fowlerville District Library to create a digital catalog of the Fowlerville Historical Collection, currently stored at the Village Offices. I’m excited to be working on this project as part of my internship with the Library.

I will be posting to the Catalog page updates about how the project is progressing and interesting things I come across about Fowlerville’s history.  When the catalog is complete our goal is to make it available to the public online or at the Library so accessing Fowlerville’s exciting history will be easier for everyone!

The Catalog currently has over 800 entries and more are being added every day!

- This post was written May 18, 2015

This Week’s Adventure in Local History: Houses & Landmarks

This past week I cataloged the Houses & Landmarks folder, containing a wealth of information about the historic homes of Fowlerville and the appearance and disappearance of local landmarks. One of the things that interested me the most was the 1956 Aerial Photograph of the village. The old water tower was shiny. A house once stood where there is now a parking lot in front of St. John’s Lutheran Church. The Community and Centennial Parks were nowhere to be seen. The fairgrounds could be identified by the Grand Stands. The schoolhouse on N. Collins St. was one of the larger buildings in the photograph with none of the current school buildings north of Hibbard St. yet built.

Historic Houses can be found all around. Some people might be living in an old house and not even realize how old it is. Thanks to records, historical collections, and photographs we are often able to find information about how old these houses are and what they once looked like. Some people endeavor to restore their old houses to the style of the original and this tends to get people’s attention.

Two houses in particular I found a lot of information in the Historical Collection about. The house at 701 E. Grand River Ave. which is in the Greek Revival style, and the house at 434 E. Grand River Ave. which is in the Victorian style. The Greek Revival house made it into the Livingston County Press. In a letter from a patron to the village historians at the time it’s shared that the Greek Revival house had once stood where the Chase Bank drive-up is now on the corner of 2nd and Church streets, but at some point was moved to where it now stands on Grand River Ave across from East St. An article appeared in the Fowlerville News & Views about the restoration of the Victorian which is on the corner of Grand River Ave. and S. Maple St. The Historical Collection also contains photocopies of a 1915 photograph of the Victorian house. Both houses also appeared in the Walking Tour of Fowlerville’s Historic Homes brochure. If you would like to learn more about historic buildings in Fowlerville this brochure is available at the Village Offices.

As it turns out my own house, a simple ranch with little or no value in way of historical architecture, is at least interesting in the fact that it is older than my family believed it to be. We were told it had been built in 1958 so I was surprised to find it in the 1956 aerial photograph. The addition of the dining room and carport hadn’t been built yet, a dirt drive circled the backyard where the fence is now, and there were no trees on the property. The trees in my backyard today are estimated to be about 60 years old so they must have been planted not many years after the aerial photograph was taken.

- This post was written May 25, 2015

Yearbook Quotes

Last week I cataloged all the Fowlerville High School Yearbooks in the Historical Collection. The titles of the yearbooks have a variety of names with The Commander being the most popular. Some of the early ones were called Tabularium, Aurora, The Gluck Auf, Tattler, Echo, The Chronicle, The Oracle, and The Marvel. Taking a peek inside a few of them I found some very interesting things. In the Aurora from 1911 each of the Seniors had a quote beneath their name and picture. It was fun to see the differences between some of the boys’ and girls’ quotes and how little has changed in the past 100 years as far as high school students go. While many of the girls’ quotes reflect their focus on their studies, being right, and fashion, most of the boys’ quotes on the other hand reflect some laziness, and their love of sleep and food. Personally I approve of both the girls’ and boys’ quotes. Below you can read the students’ names and quotes for yourself:

Evangeline H. Clements: “Loving and gentle until stroked the wrong way.”
Clare J. Canfield: “Shyness was neir thy blame.”
Joe L. Cook: “How I like a country school ma’am!”
Daphne D. Van Riper: “Procrastination is the thief of time.”
J. C. Sherwood: “Life is not so short but there’s always time to spark.”
Harry Loree: “Blessed is the man who invented sleep.”
Ival Fowler: “It’s hard to be wise on an empty stomach.”
Alta R. Berry: “Of all sad words of tongue or pen, the saddest are those at half past ten.”
Monnie A. Thayer: “There are always two sides to a question—my side and the wrong side.”
Bertha E. Thayer: “Do as you like, I don’t care.”
Mabel E. Andrews: “As well be out of the world as out of fashion.”
C. Harvey Smith: “Better late, than never.”

Yearbook Donations

At this time the Historical Collection is still missing quite a few Fowlerville High School Yearbooks. If you have any yearbooks from the dates below please considering donating it to the Fowlerville Historical Collection. As a part of the collection your yearbooks will be available for you, your classmates, historians, and anyone else who’s interested to look through. Each yearbook is a valuable resource for finding names of people who have lived in Fowlerville. Help us complete the collection!

If you have a Fowlerville High School Yearbook you would like to donate or would like more information about historical donations please contact Marion Cornett at by emailing her through this blog: The Fowlerville Observer.

Before 1900
1935, 1936

- This post was written June 12, 2015

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