I was born in Long Beach, California to Marjorie Crane and Fred L. Welsh during the last days of WWII. I grew up in the Vassar/Millington, Michigan area where I did a lot of farming in my youth. Then, it was on to Michigan State for a BA in history/pre-law. After graduation, I became an officer in the US navy serving on LST1160 Traverse County and DD931 Forrest Sherman as main propulsion assistant and CIC officer. After leaving the Navy in 1972, I managed a Manpower Inc. office in Flint, Michigan. Then it was on to General Motors for twenty-seven years as an Industrial Engineer. Now, I'm happily retired and very busy with a singing group, Brothers in Song, and with volunteer work at the Bay County Historical Museum.
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.