October’s Full Moon: a super Hunter’s Blood Moon in eclipse

sandhill moon

sandhill moon, photo by Frank Kaelin

EarthSky reports that for the full moon on October 8th, there’s a whole lot going on!

In skylore, the Northern Hemisphere’s Hunter’s Moon on October 7-8 will be called a Blood Moon. Plus the October 7-8 total lunar eclipse – the second of four total lunar eclipses in the ongoing lunar tetrad – has been widely called a Blood Moon. Voila. Double Blood Moon.

Hunter’s Moon the name for the full moon after the Harvest Moon, which is the full moon nearest the September 23 autumnal equinox. This year, the Harvest Moon came on September 9. That’s why tonight’s moon bears the name Hunter’s Moon.

…In 2014 and 2015, a new usage of the term Blood Moon sprang up. Surely you heard about it at the total lunar eclipse in April 2014. It’s the name being used for the four eclipses of the ongoing lunar tetrad – four total lunar eclipses in a row, each separated from the other by six lunar months. (more on this on Michigan in Pictures)

The partial umbral eclipse begins at 5:15 AM EDT on October 8, with the total eclipse starting at 6:25 AM, peaking at 6:55 and ending at 7:24.  On top of all that is the question as to whether or not October 8th’s moon is a supermoon:

At least two commentators – Richard Nolle and Fred Espenak – disagree on whether the October 8, 2014 full moon should be called a supermoon. Is it? You’re likely to see all sorts of conflicting information in October, 2014. If you define a supermoon based on the year’s closest perigee and farthest apogee, then the October 8 moon is not a supermoon. If you define a supermoon based on the perigee and apogee for a given monthly orbit, then it is a supermoon. And not just any supermoon, but a super Hunter’s Blood Moon in eclipse!

I guess with Frank’s photo from October 2013, we could add “Sandhill Moon” to the list! He writes that he took this at the Phyllis Haehnle Memorial Sanctuary where counts were as high as eight thousand sandhill cranes a day during last fall’s migration! View his photo bigger and see more in his Landscape slideshow.

Lots more full moon magic on Michigan in Pictures!

 

Cass Gilbert, controversy and the James Scott Memorial Fountain

Rising Above

Rising Above, photo by Tom Hughes

“Mr. Scott never did anything for Detroit in his lifetime and he never had a thought that was good for the city.”
~ J.L. Hudson

Sometimes when you peer into history, you see things you didn’t expect, and that’s definitely the case with today’s subject. The Cass Gilbert Society’s page on the James Scott Memorial Fountain on Belle Isle explains that the fountain was completed in 1925, designed by noted architect Cass Gilbert (designer of the US Supreme Court Building in DC), and executed by sculptor Herbert Adams

The fountain was the result of a bequest from millionaire playboy James Scott, a figure of much controversy in Detroit at the turn of the century. Detroit’s fountain of mirth  from the excellent Rearview Mirror series in the Detroit News (removed, but see The Wayback Machine) tells of the opposition from prominent citizens and clergy like J.L. Hudson and Bishop Williams that a playboy, loafer, gambler and vindictive practical joker like Scott be memorialized solely because he was able to plunk down a vast sum for his own monument. While public opinion kept the project scuttled for years after Scott’s death, influential Alderman David Heineman and others took up the charge, likely seeing how a vastly expensive fountain could enhance Detroit’s island park.

Speaking to reporters gathered in the office of Mayor Philip Breitmeyer, Heineman said: “I can look around this office and see pictures of men who played poker with Jim Scott. I say the bequest should be accepted.” He also recalled that “Jim always liked Belle Isle and loved to see the children there.”

The mayor agreed with Heineman. “I don’t believe the city has a right to insult any of her citizens by refusing a gift for such a good cause,” he said.

In the end, their view prevailed. It took more than 15 years, but Breitmeyer lived to attend the fountain’s dedication in 1925. Cass Gilbert, the New York architect who planned the Detroit Public Library, won a competition for design of the glistening white memorial at the lower end of the city’s pleasure island.

Read on at archive.org and see Wikipedia for more on Belle Isle.

Tom took this shot on Sunday. See it bigger and see more including a detail view in his slideshow.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This post previously appeared but sadly the photo was deleted by the owner. It’s one of my favorites so I re-blogged it!

More black & white photography and more Belle Isle on Michigan in Pictures!

The Wizard of Belle Isle’s Scott Fountain

 

A Cheat, A Liar, a Cad, But A Damn Fine Fountain, photo by Derek Farr

A Cheat, A Liar, a Cad, But A Damn Fine Fountain, photo by Derek Farr

Sherri Welch has a great feature (with video) in Crain’s Detroit entitled Underneath Belle Isle with the Wizard of Scott Fountain:

Far, far below Belle Isle, in a domed-ceiling building few know exist, Robert Carpenter keeps watch, switching levers, hitting buttons and adjusting valves like a modern-day Wizard of Oz.

But his motions aren’t designed to produce an apparition.

They’re focused on producing a plume of water that jets 20, 30, 40, 50 feet or higher into the air, along with countless other smaller bursts of water.

Carpenter is the unofficial caretaker of Belle Isle’s massive, antique James Scott Memorial Fountain.

It’s not a paying gig for him, but, truly, a labor of love.

Carpenter and his team did, restoring the pearly sheen to its marble basin, sculpted faces, animals and all five tiers.

Being the engineer he is, Carpenter couldn’t stop there.

He began scrutinizing the antique valves, pipes and drains, practically living in the domed structure under the fountain as he prepared it for operation through maintenance that included gingerly flushing its corroded, cast iron pipes and rushing to clean the resulting red water from the fountain’s marble bowl.

Read on for more at Crain’s and definitely check out the video – very cool to see what’s below this beautiful Michigan landmark!

Derek is one of my favorite Detroit photographers, and if you like his photos you can head over to his Flickr page for information about how to get them. In addition to taking great pictures, he often includes a brief story of the subject as is the case with this photo:

A Cheat, A Liar, a Cad, But A Damn Fine Fountain

Not exactly loved by all during his time on this planet, James Scott inherited a fortune from his real-estate-baron Father. He attempted to spend the majority of it during his lifetime, Building a large house ( it wasn’t large enough, he wanted his neighbors house as well. The neighbor declined so James built a huge addition to the front and top of his house, blocking out the sun for 3/4 of the day to get back at him ) , throwing large Gambling Parties oblivious to the amount he may have lost, suing any business partners ( or competitors ) that attempted to move in on what James thought should be his. He was described even by his friends as vindictive.

When he died in 1910 he left his sizeable fortune to the city under the specification that a memorial be created to honor him. It took 10 years for the city to agree to use the money for this purpose, and another 5 to complete this fountain – located on Belle Isle in Detroit. It was designed by Cass Gilbert and completed in 1925.

View Derek’s Scott Fountain photos or settle back for more fountain and more Belle Isle in his Belle Isle slideshow.

There’s more Belle Isle and more sculpture on Michigan in Pictures.

Happy 113th Opening Day, Tiger Fans!

Happy Opening Day Detroit!

Happy Opening Day Detroit!, photo by kellyanne berg

The Detroit Tigers open the 2014 season today at 1:08 PM at Comerica Park vs the Kansas City Royals. The Tigers got their start as a charter member of the Western League in 1894 and played their first American League game in 1900 when the Western League changed its name. It wasn’t until 1901, however, that the American League decided not to renew the original National Agreement, declare itself a second major league and compete with the National League for players. The Detroit Tiger timeline says:

On April 24, 1901, the Tigers prepared to take to the field for their first official American League game. A standing room only crowd was anticipated at Bennett Park, but unpredictable weather postponed the opening by a day.

On that historic afternoon, April 25, 1901, in front of 10,000 fans, the Tigers entered the ninth inning trailing Milwaukee, 13-4. A series of hits and miscues followed, moving the score to 13-12 with two runners on. With two out, Tiger Frank “Pop” Dillon faced reliever Bert Husting, and the lefthanded hitter rapped a two-run double to complete a 14-13 comeback win.

Kellyanne posted this shot from Comerica Park a couple of years ago. See it bigger and see more of her Detroit Tigers photos (which are mostly real tigers eating meat).

More Detroit Tigers and more Comerica Park on Michigan in Pictures. Play ball!

Roar

Roar

Roar, photo by Matt Gowing

Just sayin’.

Check Matt’s photo out background bigilicious and see more in his Street slideshow.

And oh yeah – go Tigers!

Bishop Baraga, the Snowshoe Priest

Bishop Baraga Shrine, L'Anse

Bishop Baraga Shrine, L’Anse, photo by RPM-Photo

Bishop Frederic Baraga passed away 145 years ago on January 18, 1868. He was born on June 29, 1797* in the castle of Mala vas in the Northwestern part of Slovenia, and for over half of the 71 years of his life Baraga covered a vast territory of over 80,000 square miles in Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Canada. The history page at the campaign for sainthood of Bishop Baraga explains that:

Father Baraga arrived in the New World on December 31, 1830. For the next 37 years he travelled the length and breath of the Great Lakes area to minister to the Ottawa and Chippewa Indians. His first mission (Arbre Croche, 1833-1835) was established along the shore of Lake Michigan at present day Harbor Springs to Cross Village. Fr. Baraga labored two years at Grand River (1833-1835) presently known as Grand Rapids, before moving his mission to LaPointe (1835-1843) and L’ Anse (1843-1853) on Lake Superior. During the summer months, Father Baraga traveled on foot and by canoe. During the winter months, he traveled on snowshoes thus giving him the titles of “Apostle of the Lakelands” and “Snowshoe Priest.” He wrote long and frequent accounts of his missionary activities including a three-volume diary. He also wrote seven Slovenian prayerbooks and authored 20 Native American books which inlcudes his monumental Grammar and Dictionary of the Chippewa Language , still in use today. He was the first bishop to write a pastoral letter in both the English and Chippewa languages.

From 1840 to his death, he ministered to the immigrants who came to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan to work in the iron and copper mines of the region. About the same time, he began the practice of rising at 3 a.m. in the summer and 4 a.m. in the winter to spend three hours in prayer, which he continued until the end of his life. His responsibilities grew even greater when he was named bishop of the newly created Vicariate of the Upper Michigan. He was consecrated bishop in Cincinnati on November 1, 1853. The lack of priests and money weighed heavily on his heart. Due to his hard work and dedication, Bishop Baraga was able to report to the Holy See a year before his death that his diocese rested on a firm foundation, with enough priests and churches for the fast-growing area. Sault Ste. Marie was his See City until 1866, at which time he moved to Marquette-a more centrally located and accessible city by both ship and train. In the Fall of 1866 while attending the Council of Baltimore, Bishop Baraga suffered a severe stroke. Afraid that his fellow bishops would not allow his return to the severe climate and remote regions of Lake Superior, he begged the priest who accompanied him (Rev. Honoratus Bourion) to take him back to Marquette. Understanding his bishop wanted to die among his flock, Rev. Bourion practically carried Baraga to the train for the long trip back to Marquette.

There’s a lot more about Baraga there including an excellent tour of Baraga’s life in the Upper Peninsula that I imagine would make a great vacation.

You can have a look at Bishop Baraga right here and read more in the entry for the Venerable Frederic Irenaeus Baraga in Wikipedia where I found the link for an online version of Father Baraga’s 1853 Ojibwe Dictionary. Here’s the direct link to the dictionary. You can read more about the Baraga shrine at Roadside America.

View RPM’s photo on black and see more in his Mich-ellaneous slideshow.

*Coincidentally enough, that’s my birthday too!

Deco Dance: Leaping Gazelle by Marshall Fredericks

Deco Dance

Deco Dance, photo by MichaelinA2

One of Michigan’s most renowned artists was Marshall Fredericks. He’s well known for the Spirit of Detroit sculpture, but this artist who spent much of his life in Michigan created many public works. Wikipedia’s entry for Marshall Fredericks has this to say about Leaping Gazelle:

This sculpture was the first commissioned work for which Marshall Fredericks was paid. In 1936, the sculpture won first prize in a national competition, and as a result, Fredericks became well known as a public sculptor. Since the gazelle is not native to Michigan, Fredericks made four animals that are, and placed them around the gazelle on Belle Isle. These animals are the otter, grouse, hawk and rabbit. Fredericks sculpted the gazelle in a characteristic movement called wheeling, which is when an animal quickly changes direction while being pursued by a predator.

The Leaping Gazelle is one of the most duplicated of Fredericks’s sculptures.

This particular sculpture is located near the entrance of the Detroit Zoo, one of many Fredericks sculptures on the Detroit Zoo grounds.

Also, I’ve been meaning to post a really cool exhibit that’s currently at the Dennos Museum in Traverse City titled Sketches to Sculptures, Rendered Reality: Sixty Years with Marshall M. Fredericks:

An exhibition of 31 small sculptures and 36 related drawings and sketches that showcases the creative process of Fredericks both as designer and sculptor. From simple pencil sketches to presentation drawings, the creative mind of Fredericks is on display as he transforms two-dimensional ideas on paper into three-dimensional sculptures. While many of the drawings in this exhibition resemble the final sculpture they would become, others only hint at elements of their outcome or point to a different outcome entirely. This exhibition is comprised of four genres that represent most of Fredericks’ work: architectural, commemorative, spiritual and whimsical. The exhibition was organized from the collections of the Marshall M. Fredericks Sculpture Museum at Saginaw Valley State University.

It includes some very cool maquettes – small, scale models of the finished Fredericks sculptures that are really amazing!

View Michael’s photo on black and see more in his Design, Special Settings, Lifestyle slideshow.

More sculpture on Michigan in Pictures.

Summer Solstice and the Annual Ring

Summer Solstice

Summer Solstice, photo by marshallfredericks

The Summer Solstice is the yearly moment when the sun’s apparent position in the sky reaches its northernmost point. You can think about it as throwing a ball up in the air – when the ball reaches its maximum height, that’s the solstice! It’s the longest day of the year and the first day of summer and it all happens today  at 12:16 PM in Michigan! More about the solstice from National Geographic.

The sculpture above is the Annual Ring by artist Nancy Holt and it shows the moment of the solar noon on the solstice at the. The photo was posted by the Marshall Fredericks Sculpture Museum, and they say the annual event includes poets reading, and a drum circle to welcome in summer. It happens today at 1 PM if you’re in the area and you can see more photos of the sculpture in their solstice slideshow!

Speaking of Marshall Fredericks, click his name for some information from Michigan in Pictures about Michigan’s most famous sculptor!

The Man on the Cross by Marshall Fredericks

Cross in the Woods

Cross in the Woods, photo by jimmythekid1.

The National Shrine at the Cross in the Woods says that the sculpture is titled The Man on the Cross:

The sculpture of the crucified Christ was titled “The Man on the Cross” by the renowned Michigan sculptor Marshall Fredericks. It is made of bronze 3/8″ to 1/2″ thick. It weighs seven tons, is twenty-eight feet tall from head to toe, and the outstretched arms span twenty-one feet. The figure of Christ is attached by thirteen bolts 30″ long and 2″ thick that were made when the figure was cast in Norway.

Fredericks wanted to portray Christ in a peaceful way. It was his dream to “give the face an expression of great peace and strength and offer encouragement to everyone who viewed the Cross”. Christ is symbolized just at the moment when He commends Himself to His Father. The sculptor received special permission from the Vatican to omit the crown of thorns and the wound on Jesus’ side.

Here’s a photo of Fredericks at the installation. They have more about the shrine and the sculptor. You can also see more of Marshall Fredericks work on MIchigan in Pictures.

See more views of the sculpture in James’ Cross in the Woods slideshow.

Rodin’s Thinker, Detroit Institute of Art

Rodin's Thinker, Detroit Institute of Art

Rodin’s Thinker, Detroit Institute of Art, photo by Robert Yanal.

The Detroit Institute of Arts has a collection of over 60,000 works of art across a wide range of media. One of the most visible is their cast of sculptor August Rodin’s iconic sculpture, The Thinker. More than twenty monumental size bronze casts of the sculpture are in museums around the world. Rodin made the first small plaster version around 1880, but the first large-scale bronze cast was not completed until 1902.

The DIA’s version sits outside the museum’s main entrance. It was cast in 1904 and donated to the museum by Horace H. Rackham in 1922. The bronze sculpture weighs about 2000 pounds and sits on a 12,000 pound granite base. You can see more views of The Thinker at the DIA.

Check this out bigger and in Robert’s Detroit slideshow.

More sculpture on Michigan in Pictures.