#TBT: Shining in Cheyboygan with the Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw

USCG Mackinaw, Cheybogan

Shining in Cheyboygan, photo by Bill Johnson

Here’s a neat “Throwback Thursday” (TBT), a photo of the United States Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw on May 25, 1993 when she was still in service. Bill writes:

This is the original Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw, WAGB 83, wearing its silvery whitish colors, in its home port of Cheboygan, MI. This beauty was built in 1944 to aid the war effort by keeping the Great Lakes open during the winter. The cutter was intentionally built too wide to get through the Saint Lawrence Seaway in order to keep her in the Great Lakes. She was moved to Mackinaw in June of 2006, decommissioned, and turned into a museum at the Chief Wawatam docks. Today, she wears the red hull that she was retired in.

You can see the current look of the Icebreaker Mackinaw and get information about visiting on the Icebreaker Mackinaw Maritime Museum website.

View Bill’s photo background big and see more in his Boats, Ships, and Stuff That Floats slideshow.

More Throwback Thursdays on Michigan in Pictures.

Wienerlicious

Wienerlicious, Mackinaw City

Wienerlicious, Mackinaw City, June, 2016, photo by Norm Powell

Remember folks: I don’t take the photos, choose the titles … or name businesses Wienerlicious. That said, have a Wienerlicious Wednesday Friday!

View Norm’s photo bigger, click for more of his Pure Michigan photos, and view & purchase photos at normpowellphotography.com.

More Roadside awesomeness on Michigan in Pictures.

Today in Spoiler Alerts: July 3, 1776

MEG_0653

Untitled, photo by Marvin Graves

I hope everyone has a great Independence Day weekend … though I suspect the Redcoats won’t.

View Marvin’s photo bigger and see more in his really great Fort Michilimackinac 2009 slideshow.

PS: If you ever get a chance to visit Colonial Michilimackinac in Mackinaw City, I heartily recommend it. Definitely one of Michigan’s coolest museums!

PPS: Love the Bridge peeking up just to the right of the flagpole.

 

Opening the Mackinac Bridge, November 1, 1957

Opening of Mackinac Bridge - November 1, 1957

Opening of Mackinac Bridge – November 1, 1957, photo by daveumich

An Absolute Michigan feature via Michigan History Magazine on the opening of the Mackinac Bridge on November 1, 1957 says (in part):

With the bridge ready for traffic, but fearing inclement autumn weather at the Straits, officials decided to have an official “opening” on November 1, 1957, but an official “dedication” in late June of the following year.

Amazingly, the weather on the first day of November (preceded by two days of rain and fog) was sunny and pleasant. However, the weather in late June was so cold and wet (with six-foot waves on the Straits) that some of the events were shortened or canceled altogether. According to one observer, it “was a bleak, gray day, more like March than June, and the only parader who looked happy was a snow queen from Cadillac, who rode on an ice throne float, throwing snowballs made of popcorn.”

…On November 1, after paying the $3.25 toll (taken symbolically by former U.S. Senator Prentiss Brown, who chaired the Mackinac Bridge Authority), Governor G. Mennen Williams crossed the bridge (driven in a car by Mrs. Williams because the governor had forgotten his driver’s license). Then, according to United Press International correspondent Thomas Farrell, cars lined up for one mile on both sides of the Straits “swarmed” on to a bridge whose size “staggers the imagination.”

In his opening day remarks, Governor Williams predicted that the bridge would add $100 million annually to the state’s tourist trade. He continued, “Michigan at last is to be one state, geographically, economically and culturally, as well as politically.”

I think we can probably agree that it’s had a tremendous impact on Michigan! About this photo with a unique view of the festivities, Dave writes:

A friend found this large format color slide earlier this year and I scanned it at high resolution. It shows Governor G. Mennen “Soapy” Williams at the tollbooths on the St. Ignace end of the Mackinac Bridge on the day it opened, November 1, 1957. I have seen many photos of this day, but never one quite like this.

Be sure to check this out big as the Mighty Mac to see the faces in the crowd and jump into Dave’s slideshow for more.

Michigan in Pictures has lots more on the Mackinac Bridge and you can get a comprehensive look at the bridge on the 50 Year feature on the Mackinac Bridge at Absolute Michigan.

The Deadliest Game: Fort Michilimackinac Massacre of 1763

British Troops at Fort Michilimackinac

British Troops at Fort Michilimackinac, photo by Robert Fred

This year marks the 250th anniversary of the most dramatic event at Fort Michilimackinac. On June 2, 1763 the fort was captured by Ojibwa & Sauk warriors, who gathered under the guise of playing a huge game of baggatiway. Elizabeth Edwards of Traverse Magazine has an in-depth article about the massacre that begins:

Under an unusually hot sun on a late spring day on the Straits of Mackinac, British Major George Etherington, commandant of Fort Michilimackinac, was suffering from an acute case of cultural blindness. And there was no excuse for it. Relaxed at the sidelines of a rousing game of baggatiway (similar to lacrosse) outside the fort, the major should have seen the danger signs in this Ojibwe versus Sauk contest of sweaty, half-naked bodies painted with white clay and charcoal.

The 30-year-old officer was born in the colonies, and most likely grew up on stories of Indian uprisings. He’d even served in the just-ending French and Indian War, in which the English had wrested control of North America from the French—a victory that had put this previously French fort in Etherington’s care. Though the major had been raised on American soil and had fought on it, he was still English. And in that country, a battle was a battle, and a sporting event was a sporting event.

Perhaps that explains why the major missed the clues…

Definitely read on for much more at Traverse! Every Memorial Weekend on Saturday, Sunday & Monday, they re-enact this event and much more of the fort’s history in the  annual Fort Michilimackinac Pageant. Next Sunday (June 2) they will commemorate the 250th anniversary of the attack at Michilimackinac at the fort as they open the new South Southwest Rowhouse.

Robert has some more good information about the events at the fort including a link to the painting The Conspiracy – Fort Michilimackinac by Robert Griffing that imagines the planning of the massacre. See his photo background bigtacular and see more in his My Neighborhood slideshow.

More from the Straits of Mackinac & Mackinac Island on Michigan in Pictures.