Posts of interest to local history buffs, written by local history buffs!

Col. John L. Burleigh was not "apocryphal."

submitted by Wystan Stevens

While I was doing a Google search on John L. Burleigh, I noticed an item about him in the online pages of Stanley Wertheim's A Stephen Crane Encyclopedia (1997), where he is referenced (p. 43) as being "probably an apocryphal character invented by Elbert Hubbard." Nay, it is not so.

Col. John L. Burleigh got his law degree, and his start in politics, in my home town of Ann Arbor, Michigan. Early histories of this area contain references to his activities, especially as the founder in 1878 of a weekly newspaper, the Ann Arbor Democrat. Two years later, it was noted that Burleigh had sold out his interest in that publication to a business partner and left to seek opportunities in Chicago. From Chicago he evidently migrated to New York. The New York Times on January 9, 1895, posted a reference to him as an attorney practicing in NYC:

A Washtenaw County (Michigan) history notes that Burleigh had been an alderman in Brooklyn. Burleigh's death notice (no obit, alas) appeared in the NYT on May 10, 1909, a day after his demise. His death notice in the New York Tribune (again, no obit) stated that the funeral would be held on May 11 at the Church of the Redeemer, in Brooklyn.

In 1877, Burleigh participated in ceremonies at the laying of the cornerstone of the Washtenaw County Courthouse in Ann Arbor (1881 History of Washtenaw County, p. 346).

Stunning, sharp view of Lower Town

lower town
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Stunning, sharp view of Lower Town from across the river shows flooding in slaughterhouse area. Date unknown. From the Burton Historical collection.

Submitted by Wystan Stevens

New old photo of Winchell octagon turns up.

Octagan house
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University of Michigan Professor Alexander Winchell's octagon house in Ann Arbor, 1904-06, built on the site where Hill Auditorium was later erected. From Early Detroit Images from the Burton Historical Collection.

The best-ever image of the lost landmark.

Submitted by Wystan Stevens

Online collections from the Art, Architecture & Engineering Library

Notre Dame detail
Notre Dame (Cathedral). Portal: “The Last Judgment” in North transept.; 1211-1427. Click image for larger view.

Whether you're looking for a local map from 1923 or the plan for the Piazza Del Campidoglio, searching for detail from a great work of art or architecture, consider browsing AAEL's Lantern Slide Collection, which includes thousands of digital images created from lantern slides showing architecture, cities, and landscapes from the late 19th and 20th centuries.

The AAEL also boasts a growing collection of Artists' Books in the form of art objects or art objects in the form of books. (The books require careful handling, so many are housed in the Special Collections Room and available by appointment.)

Bimbo's on the Hill and other lost Ann Arbor eateries


Bimbos on the Hill

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Anyone remember this restaurant? Check out some of the other names listed under Ann Arbor's Lost Eateries, a section of arborwiki dedicated to restaurants and watering holes from Ann Arbor's past. And if that doesn't fully satisfy your hunger for local history, the image above is taken from a collection of historical signs (mainly from the 1970s) we're currently adding to our gallery of local images. It includes other restaurants from the arborwiki list and many old signs and storefronts from area businesses.

Early Detroit Images from DPL's Burton Historical Collection

Michigan Central Railroad

Michigan Central Railroad Station; Bardwell, Jex, 1824-1902,
Early Detroit Images from the Burton Historical Collection.

In 2005, the Detroit Public Library was awarded the Library of Michigan Digitization for Preservation and Access Grant, providing for the creation of a digital database of 19th century and pre-1922 photographs of Detroit. Formats include glass negatives, lanternslides, cased images, albumen prints and stereograph cards from the Detroit Public Library's Burton Historical Collection. These images illustrate the social and cultural history of Detroit and document the many historical events that have occurred in the city.

Finding Your Way Through the Family Tree

familytreefamilytree

Looking for new ways to research the family tree? "Learning More at the Library of Michigan," a free annual genealogy seminar set for Saturday, March 29, will focus on utilizing online resources for family history research. The workshop runs from 1 to 4:30 p.m. at the Michigan Library and Historical Center. Seating is limited, so registration is recommended. Sign up online at www.michigan.gov/familyhistory, by e-mail at librarian@michigan.gov or by phone at (517) 373-1300.

Ann Arbor bids adieu to colorful citizens

from Dale Leslie

Someone much smarter than I observed, "Life is stranger than fiction." That remark was confirmed in the last few days with the passing of businessman Paul Lohr and his son Fred Lohr, coincidentally within hours of each other, and then later Fred Mammel, former City utilities head for at least two decades, and a fellow Kiwanian of Paul's, died at Arbor Hospice. Adding to the irony of these real-life events, all three final observances were held at approximately the same time on Monday, March 10th.

The Lohrs are pure-bred Ann Arborites. Undoubtedly, you know or know of at least one family member. The working Lohr farm was on Lohr Road near the Ann Arbor Airport where Paul caught the bug for flying. Ann Arbor Implement Company- known to many locals as Ann Arbor Imp-ment- saw the same family ownership over three generations, first by Grandpa Ernest Lohr- then son Paul Lohr-and Grandson Fred Lohr. (It was Fred- fighting illness for many years- who passed away after hearing of his dad's death.) Paul Lohr loved to show anyone the former wine cellars, spreading deep under their store at First Street and Liberty.

Create your own album and upload photos to pictureAnnArbor

art fairart fair

Do you have photographs of Ann Arbor you'd like to share? You can now sign up and submit your photos online to pictureAnnArbor. Just log in to your aadl.org account, fill out this form, and an album will be created for you. Upload as many images as you'd like to your pictureAnnArbor gallery. (There's a delay before your uploaded images will show up in your gallery, usually one business day.)

Walking and Talking Ann Arbor History

guideguide

The best walking the town brochure, Guide to Ann Arbor Architecture, by the Huron Valley Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, is now the best walking the town Podcast. Twenty different podcasts on the Law Quad, Nickels Arcade, St. Andrew's Church to name a few, are available for your viewing and listening pleasure. After viewing the videos online, load them on your MP3 Player and start rambling.

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