Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Designing a Class on Gen. Custer in the Civil War

Jo Brownlie, the coordinator for the Osher Life Long Learning classes called me today about a class for that program at SVSU in the fall. I was very pleased to hear from her and to have the opportunity to develop this course. I also thought about a course on the St. Louis World's Fair as a follow-up on the Columbian Exposition, but Custer won this battle.

I plan to put a few hundred hours into this project. It's necessary to spend that much time in preparation. At this point, I don't have a structure or a theme I want to develop so I will be doing some survey reading on Custer in the Civil War.

I'll take notes in my OneNote application and work the course up from there. It will be a blast.

Beautiful Video

This is a beautiful video that makes me want to add a projector and a laptop to our shows for the effects we could so easily add to the program.

A Day at the Museum

Tuesday anchors my week.  When I retired, in 2001, I started volunteering for the Bay County Historical Society.  That's one of the best decisions I've made.  The Society is a platform for so many discoveries and an place where I've met so many interesting people.  Tuesdays are the days I volunteer in the Butterfield Research Library located just inside the front door on the left in the museum.

It's a strange little room where so many discoveries are made.  Yesterday, we had a young man come in with a uniform shirt from the Bay City Brahma's, a semi-pro team from the 1990's in Bay City.  I had never heard of them because no one else had asked about them during my years at the library, but a quick look in the vertical files under sports, football brought out this big folder filled with clippings.  The young man eagerly went through the stack and his quest was answered.

A young woman, who is beginning her genealogical quest looking for information on 600 different relatives came in.  She is just beginning but the joy of discovery is in her eye.  She's beginning a long journey but one with enough discoveries to carry her well into middle age.  I bet she goes there.  I hope she comes back with reports on her discoveries.

That's the way it often is in the world of a library researcher.  When people leave with smiles on their faces, I know we are on the right track.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Dale Walicki's Style Pages

The picture at left is an example of the very helpful style guides found in Dale Wolicki's book "The Historic Architecture of Bayt City, Michigan" . There are about twenty of these pages in the book. If someone learned what was on them and did some neighborhood walks to see which elements he could identify on homes in his area, that person would be well on his way to an understanding of those homes.

We have the book for sale in the Bay County Historical Museum store. It is critical for understanding Bay City Architecture.
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Carroll Park Walking Tour

This group of people took part in the walking tour from Carroll Park in Bay City that I guided on tuesday morning. I worked about 30 hours on this tour but like to work more like 75 hours on material that I haven't given before. All turned out well though and the group was just super.

They were from the Bay County Council on Aging and had set up a lunch as well as the tour from this pretty Bay City park.

I told them that the D.H. Fitzhugh family had donated the land for the park in about 1875. I described how different parks were at that time and how cemeteries often filled that function.

Of course, I had to mention Frederick Law Olmsted's contribution to the design of this park. I believe that it is probable that his firm designed the layout of Carroll Park. Olmsted was the first landscape architect in America and the designer of Central Park in New York as well as Biltmore in North Carolina. He also did the grounds for the Columbian Exposition.

I studied Dale Woliki's book on Bay City Architecture once again to prepare for this tour. This time, I noticed how crucial understanding his pages on architectural style are to conducting a higher quality architectural tour.

One of the houses on the tour is shown on the left. This is the Gilbrith House on Center Avenue. It is a colonial revival home that originally belonged to the owner of the World Star Knitting Mills. This house is almost on the corner of Trumble and Center.

After the tour, I shared lunch with the group in Carroll Park. It was really a pleasant experience.
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Thursday, June 3, 2010

Leigh and Bob Nancarrow's Wedding

After twelve years, Leigh and Bob tied the knot on Saturday at their home by Sand Lake. The entire affair was very nice and was very enjoyable to all of us there.

Dave Deland met Sue and I at the intersection of M-55 and M-65 to follow us into the cabin. That is something of a trick since it is located about 2 miles of the main road. Once you know where to go it isn't a problem but until then it can be.

There were about forty people at the wedding. The deck on the cabin was able to hold all of us comfortably. The balcony up above the deck was perfect for the cermony. The minister who was a lady conducted the service well with an overtone of fun for all.

Bob was funny when he forgot the ring during the ceremony and had to return to the cabin t o get it.

Sue and I had brought up roast beef and chicken that Leigh had bought at Norm's in Richville. Dinner was very nice. Sue brought up her decorated cookies as well.

Sue and I stayed until the end of the day when we left to spend the night at Dave Deland's in Gladwin. All in all, it was a super time.

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