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February 11, 1892
At the council meeting held last Friday evening, a resolution was offered, submitting to the electors at the next annual charter election the question of issuing $25,000 for water works. The resolution was laid on the table until the next meeting.
A majority of the council favor the resolution and it will unquestionably pass, leaving it with the people to decide the matter. Meanwhile it will be well to remember that every town of any importance in Northern Michigan, except Charlevoix, already have water works.
February 25, 1892
We have it from reliable authority that train service will be put on the Charlevoix-Petoskey end of the road as soon in the spring as possible.
J. W. Kirby had $5,000 fall to him yesterday-it is a 11 1/2 pound boy.
Messrs. Burns and Cameron of this place have been awarded the contract for the construction of the Charlevoix freight depot. The structure will be 24 x 80, with a six foot platform on the track side, and a sixteen foot platform on the other three sides. It is probable that the building will be used for the passenger depot for a short time in the spring, for service on the Petoskey end.
March 3, 1892
Mrs. Paddock arrived from Ohio Saturday and is visiting her parents, Mr. and Mrs. John Nicholls.
Will See, eldest son of Mr. and Mrs. See, arrived here from his home in Oregon Monday, on a visit, and everybody is glad to see him.
For nearly the entire year past, Mr. John Burns has been acting President of Charlevoix, and has discharged his duties well. His nomination for President was a very popular thing to do.
March 17, 1892
There is one feature of the results of the vote on water works, that will be conceded by all, and from which all will reap the benefit, and that is the activity which will result from the construction of the plant the coming summer. It is estimated that between $7,000 and $8,000 will be expended here for labor. This in addition to the activity that will prevail by reason of railroad construction, the building of depots, etc., will make a lively summer for Charlevoix. We predict the liveliest summer in the history of Charlevoix.
March 24, 1892
William Laister moved his business, a general merchandise store to Charlevoix in the spring of 1869. A motley assortment of merchandise occupied one side of the room, and in charge was a character who afterwards figured in the early history of Charlevoix. A tall, gaunt, cold-featured man, gruff and repellent, stiff and unbending in nature and stiffer by reason of his high, stiff collar and generous old-fashioned neckerchief-William Laister; an Englishman by birth, a pessimist and recluse; a mysterious, impenetrable stoic.
One winter day in 1872, William Laister became weary of this world, sick of life, and locking all his doors, he sat cooly down before a mirror, placed a big navy revolver to his head and blew out his brains. The first grave dug in Charlevoix cemetery received the mortal remains of William Laister.
March 31, 1892
Looking back to the early history of Charlevoix we find that in 1869 South Arm was in Antrim County. On the west side of the head S. G. Isaman kept a store and Sol had full sway. The little settlement about the head embraced the homestead of D. C. Nettleton, Mike Murphy, D. Hogan, "old man Rogers," Jake Keller, Chris Mayhew and a little further up the west side, D. J. Parish. Up to 1869 there was no postoffice and the colony took "turn about" in getting their mail from Charlevoix. The post office-"Nelsonville" was established in 1869 with David C. Nettleton as postmaster.
In those early days when the nearest railroad station was Grand Rapids and Charlevoix was a wooding station for a dozen or more lake propellers running between Buffalo and Chicago, the "skippers" lay close to all our hearts. Scarcely a day passed that one or more of them did not take possession at our outside dock for several hours.
Indians were in demand, and so was whiskey, a supply of which was kept on board to facilitate business. These old veteran lake captains still occupy a chamber in the memories of old settlers. Their distinct and striking personalities were made more conspicuous by their autocratic sway over everything within a distance of the length of their heaving lines.
One of the earliest to wood at the "Pine River Pier" was Capt. Jim Pratt of the St. Louis. That was the day of tyrants afloat and Capt. Jim was a tyrant-a veritable despot, yet kind-hearted when you broke the crust of his crusty nature. You could hear him swear as soon as he checked down outside, and by the time his lines were made fast, everything was blue.
Then there was old Capt. James Drake, of the Oneida. "Old Jimmy Ducks" everybody called him, even the dock gamins of Buffalo guying him by yelling that cognomen at him as he passed up the river. He wore his high topped heavy boots in August, and while yet out in the lake he would begin swearing at Mr. Fox about the measurement or piling of wood. Fox always laid for the old Irishman, and yet relates with an air of satisfaction how after old Jimmy would throw the bottom logs of the pile into the lake, he would fish them out and measure them again in the Oneida's pile. Scarcely a trip that Uncle Amos and Capt. Drake would not have a ruction off the dock, the Capt. stamping and swearing until Fox would get purple and consign him and his boat to a locality where fuel was not required.
In contrast to these characters of fire and brimstone, was the quiet and gentlemanly Capt. Perkins, who succeeded Capt. Welch in the propeller Fountain City in 1869. Poor Capt. Perkins' bad health soon compelled him to leave the lakes, and he died at Painesville, Ohio in 1871.
One of the favorite captains of those days was Capt. Burton Penny, Master of that queen of passenger steamers, the Idaho. With what regularity she alternated with the Fountain City-"up" every other Friday night and "down" Thursday morning. Those were red letter days at the old dock. That chime whistle only gave one long blast but it was a long one, and it was music to our ears. Capt. Penny was a portly and bluff old sailor and as kind as he was big. He retired some years before this time. (1892)
The "Commodore" of the entire fleet was honest old Captain James Gibson, who sailed the Fountain City after Perkins left her. He always loved Charlevoix, and was the only one of the lot who had the courage to bring his boat inside after the river was dug out. A trip with Capt. Gibson was a social event. Fatherly, candid, high-minded and clean-tongued, he was a sailor gentleman. Always considerate of the comfort of his passengers and especially kind to children. When the Fountain City left the route everybody mourned.
April 14, 1892
The Scribe Revives Recollections of the Past-Persons and Events.
There are but few, comparatively of the present inhabitants of Charlevoix, who knew Seth F. Mason-one of the earliest settlers of this place. The scribe remembers him as a quiet and pleasant old gentleman who, in the autumn of 1869, harvested an excellent crop of oats on that portion of the present corporation Charlevoix bounded by Bridge, State, Antrim and Mason streets. With his family he dwelt in a log house where Newman street now runs, in front of the machine shop. The beautiful balsam tree growing there was brought by Mr. Mason in an open boat from Huron county and transplanted by the door of his modest domicile.
Only about three years was the scribe permitted to know this genial old gentleman. Inured to the water, he had the reputation of being one of the most expert small boat sailors in these parts. The summer of 1870 he built a fine "clinker" sail boat, which in honor of the paper just started, he named the "Sentinel." Coming from Northport one stormy fall day, he missed the river, drifted into the old dock, capsized and was drowned, his body being recovered several days later on North Point. The sorrowful event cast a gloom over the little community that the scribe yet vividly remembers.
It was about at this period that stalwart Henry Morgan came upon the scene of action. Stalwart in stature, stalwart in honesty and stalwart in good old-fashioned Presbyterian piety. Henry Morgan passed through the struggles of those pioneer days but was denied participation in those following. Well does the scribe remember the sturdy old Scotchman, with a hand like a ham and a heart as big. He began his career here as a merchant and shipper. His store on the corner of State and Mason streets, is still an ancient landmark. [now City Hall-R. N.]
The first dirt removed from the mouth of the river-not taking into account what Wm. Laister scraped down-stream with his hand shovel-was taken out by Mr. Morgan with a long-handled scraper, operated over the side of a scow swung athwart the stream, with a team on either bank as the propelling power. His energy was phenomenal and his power of endurance equal to his energy. It was he who built the old north "pier" under the swamp land contract, with D. C. Nettleton as local commissioner. In the early harbor improvements he gave his energy and ripe judgment and much that was accomplished stands to his credit. About 1875 he went west for a time when consumption seized him, and he was taken to his old home in Mitchell, Ont. to die.
Contemporary with Mr. Morgan was that brave soldier, genial companion, and intelligent gentleman-Capt. Walter Clifford, 7th U. S. Infantry.
April 21, 1892
Lieut. Walter Clifford, U. S. A., was a brother of the Newman's of this place. In anti-bellum times his name was Edward Walter Clifford Newman, but in a moment of thoughtlessness he enlisted as a private in a regular regiment under his two middle names. His courage and ability won him promotion, his warrants and commissions bearing the name "Walter Clifford." Under this name he was married at Sackett's Harbor, N. Y., and later, in this county, he had that name legalized in the probate court.
The scribe was one of a crowd that welcomed the propeller Fountain City from Buffalo, the first trip in the spring of 1869. Someone remarked that "Lieut. Clifford" was aboard. Jack Ingalls observed; "Clifford is a Captain now" and so he was; and one of the first to land was Clifford. For three years he remained here "unassigned" and may be classed as a prominent figure in the pioneer history of Charlevoix. Clifford was, during those years, the life of our social circle, and an enthusiastic believer in the future of Charlevoix. Indirectly he went into merchantile business here with his brother, W. C. Newman and built a store building on the south side of Round Lake, known as the "Tip Miller place." His residence on the south terrace, was afterwards occupied by O. D. Wood and lately burned.
Clifford was an original and striking character. His rapid promotion in the regular army from the ranks to a captaincy is sufficient evidence of his ability and courage, while his geniality and keen appreciation of humor was proverbial. He was never happier than when perpetrating a practical joke upon some one. Straight as an arrow, soldierly in every way, courteous and kind, he was every inch an "officer and a gentleman;" but his propensity for fun asserted itself with astonishing frequency. "Corporal Tom Kelly" was his favorite victim and many a prank did he play upon the old veteran. The scribe did not escape his penchant for deviltry, and yet remembers one cold November night, when he was coatless and shivering, to sing "Larboard Watch" with him, release only being granted after the last verse had awakened every resident of the street.
The crack of a rifle could be safely set down as Clifford was shooting loons with his Winchester. He was a "dead shot" as the Indians in the White River campaign discovered to their sorrow. He was an enthusiast in harbor improvement matters, and contributed freely on all occasions. Although possessing an enviable war record, and two brevets for "meritorious conduct on the field," he was never boastful. His order to report for duty assigned him as Indian agent at Fort Berthold, Dakota, in which capacity he served for several years, winning warm commendation from his superiors, for his tact and courage, displayed in the management of semi-hostile tribes.
Later on, his assignment to the 7th Infantry, he was plunged into the Indian troubles preceding and succeeding the Custer massacre, and when Sitting Bull was rounded up, the Captain was detailed by Gen. Gibbon to bring the chief and his band, which he did, accompanied only by a sergeant and an interpreter. In the White River campaign he commanded a column sent in pursuit of the hostiles and was once reported dead. He was proud of his profession and his flag, but sometimes fell into disfavor with his West Point superiors by his "mustang" recklessness. It is related that once, while officer of the day, he doffed his uniform and soundly thrashed an impudent private who had remarked to the Captain that his shoulder straps were all that saved him from his wrath. But his straps were won in the smoke of battle and even West Pointers respected him.
His leave of absence was spent in Charlevoix and the last evening here he spent at the residence of the scribe, relating the stirring incidents of his Indian campaigns. He left Charlevoix the next day never to return again. He had but just reached his western post when he died suddenly of heart disease. Always popular with his men, his death was sincerely mourned by them and in that far off deserted military post, a beautiful monument, effected by his company, marks the last bivouac of a brave soldier.
The scribe, soon after, went personally to Gen. Sheridan, in Chicago, to arrange, if possible, for the removal of the remains to Charlevoix, by the absence of any army regulation covering the case, it could not be accomplished.
The Captain considered Charlevoix his home, and took a deep interest in its welfare.
April 28, 1892
The lumber for the Catholic church is being placed on the ground and the structure will be erected this summer.
Lelah and Myrtie Miller in their character duet, "Old Folks at Home" at Lewis Grand Opera House Friday evening, will alone be worth the price of admission.
The steamer Puritan was wind bound here all day Saturday and part of Saturday night, and was visited by hundreds of our citizens who have long been praying for electric lights in Charlevoix.
A. J. Mudge is opening a grocery store at his old stand on Antrim street.
May 12, 1892
Dr. Lamb, an M. D. and D. D. S. of Philadelphia, was here yesterday and decided to locate and open dental rooms. He will come Saturday to remain.
On Monday, Mr. H. P. Grover was here and closed the deal between the syndicate of C. & W. M. officials and Jos. R. Dixon, whereby the latter's 70 acre farm changes hands, in accordance with the option secured, same parties also secured an option last fall. Although but little can be learned of the purposes of the purchasers, enough is known to justify the belief that Charlevoix is and will continue to be an especial object of the favor of the railroad company in their plans for development. It is understood that the property will be platted for residences and resort purposes, and a large hotel erected. To Charlevoix it is the most important link in the chain of events that have occurred since the railroad became an assured fact.
May 19, 1892
The railroad company last week let the passenger depot contract to Pelton & Co., of Grand Rapids, and work on the foundation has commenced.
Saturday night the steel was laid to the Cassidy place in Banks. It is now in Charlevoix county in the vicinity of the Wm. Stevens farm, in Marion, and coming rapidly northward. With good weather the rails will be at the gravel-pit on the Hull farm early next week.
June 2, 1892
THE STEEL ALL DOWN
The Iron Horse Creeps in From the South Saturday
A continuous line of steel now connects Charlevoix with the rest of the world! Charlevoix is in touch with the "outside" and has felt the pulse-throbs conveyed to us through the "iron sinews of commerce."
At about nine o'clock Saturday morning the construction train pulled by C. & W. M. engine No. 144, with J. T. Cunningham at the throttle, S. Murphy as fireman, W. Hartford, conductor and Dan Kennedy in charge of the track-layers, slowly crept across the Stover bridge and toward the lake-front. At 4 o'clock the last rail was laid on the extension.
June 30, 1892
WE ARE IN THE SWIM
Charlevoix is in the full enjoyment of railroad communication.
June 26th was Sunday but nevertheless it was a great day for Charlevoix. There were no noisy demonstrations, but a good part of the town turned out to witness the christening.
The unfinished depot was filled, the platform crowded, the right of way back of the terrace about all occupied, the space between the track and the beach was thick with carriages and omnibuses and three steamboats lay at the railroad dock.
The train from the south was scheduled for 2:40 p.m. but at 2:10 a train appeared and was supposed to be the regular, but proved to be a special. It consisted of a baggage car, the vestibuled wagner "Lawrence" and General Manager Heald's private car. Engine 160 pulled the outfit. She side tracked, and twenty minutes later Engine 161 pulled in the regular train of three coaches and a baggage car. There was no demonstration but had it not been the Sabbath the crowd would have made itself heard at Boyne City.
A crowd of Charlevoix people boarded the train for the run to Petoskey which was made in 21 minutes taking the 10:30 train back in the evening. There was music in the brakeman's voice as he shouted "Charlevoix" to the passengers returning to their homes happy in the thought that the days of compulsory staging and steamboating were things of the past.
July 7, 1892
CHARLEVOIX SUMMER RESORT ITEMS
The windmill for the well on the upper terrace, came Wednesday and will soon be placed in position. Pipes are to be laid to the Belvedere, and a number of cottages. It is understood that one or more fountains are to be placed on the grounds soon.
A number of the new cottages have been painted in bright colors, O. M. Allen's being light and dark blue, with vermilion roof. H. P. Parmalee's bright green trimmed with vermilion. Mr. Bishop's cream and Indian red. Mr. Allen's cottage is to be named "The Allen," Mr. Bishop's "Sunrise," and Mr. Parmalee's "Breezy Point."
July 14, 1892
WELL, WHAT NEXT?
For many years Charlevoix looked forward to uninterrupted navigation between Lake Michigan and Pine Lake. The blessing was secured.
Then we cast our eyes forward for the sight of a locomotive. It is here. Charlevoix has now what we have long years hoped and prayed for-a harbor and a railroad. We have-or soon will have-a fourteen foot channel into Pine Lake, and the main trunk line of one of the best railroad systems is ours.
To what shall Charlevoix next turn its attention? Or shall we set down contented with what has been accomplished? By no means has Charlevoix reached the fullness of her destiny. There is yet much to be accomplished for Charlevoix. What we have accomplished is only the beginning.
August 16, 1892
Mrs. Hattie Clifford, formerly of this place, is still residing in Washington where her son Walter has a position in one of the folding rooms of the Senate. In a recent letter Mrs. Clifford relates an interesting incident. In a conversation with Senator Walthall, of Mississippi, he asked if her husband was an officer in the 16th Infantry. She replied that he was. The Senator arose from his chair, and, bowing with true southern courtesy, said: "Madam I captured your husband at the battle of Chicamauga." He at once became interested in the matter in which she was seeking his aid, and went with her to the other Senators.
August 16, 1892
At the Congregational Church at 11 o'clock today, by the Rev. W. H. McPherson, was celebrated the nuptials of Miss Effie Berdan, of this place, to Mr. A. E. Clayden, of Jackson.
Miss Lottie Mason, the business partner of the bride, was the bridesmaid, and Mr. E. A. Berdan, the bride's brother, was the groom's best man.
The newly wedded couple left on the afternoon train for a two week's trip to Jackson, Wayne and Detroit. They will return to Charlevoix, where of course, they will remain. The business of Mason and Berdan, will continue at the old stand, although a change in the firm name will probably follow. Miss Berdan, as a member of one of our most enterprising business houses, has acquired a wide acquaintance and many friends, and it goes without saying that she has the best wishes of all, as has also the fortunate groom, Mr. Clayden, who formerly resided here and where he has always been well thought of.
September 15, 1892
On Saturday seventeen members of Baxter Post, G. A. R., leave for Washington to attend the reunion. Good fortune attend the old Vets. on their journey.
Harrison Bedford and Will Hampton are meandering around the southern part of the state on their bicycles.
September 29, 1892
Work has at last been commenced on the waterworks pipe under the river. A diver was at work Monday cleaning out a hole in the sand on the bottom of the river for the pipe, and a novel method was adopted. The Silsby steam fire engine was brought to the bank and the diver took the hose down with him and plowed out a ditch across the bottom and up the banks. Flexible joints are employed, which are fastened by the diver after the pipe is laid. The pipe will be in this week.
October 13, 1892
Rev. A. M. Parmenter, the founder of the Charlevoix Baptist Society, and for several years pastor here has been in town the past week. He sold his residence on the south terrace to Capt. Berdan.
The council on Monday evening employed E. M. Guard as waterworks engineer at $500 per annum.
November 3, 1892
The pupils of the Charlevoix school have the proper idea about the celebration of Halloween. They took up a subscription among themselves, and spent the proceeds in charitable deeds. One poor family received a cord of wood from the High School pupils.
December 1, 1892
One day last week the writer of this and a friend were standing at the bridge when a muskrat swam across the river and entered the slab pile on the north side. Our mind went back about eighteen years to an autumn day, when, standing in about the same spot, but upon the old wooden bridge, we saw a large otter come out from under the old fish-house that stood at the corner where the site of the warehouse is, and swim the stream. But a short time before that "Lance" Aldrich shot one of the beautiful animals through a crack in the floor of the same fish shanty; and sometime after, he shot one as it rose through a hole in the ice of Round Lake.
And while we are speaking of otter, we are reminded of an incident that occurred in the early days in which Wm. M. Miller, of this place, figured as a hero. Mr. Miller was coming down between Twin Lakes when he heard a terrible squealing on the ice below him. He soon came in sight of two large otters engaged in a very lively scrap, out a short distance from the shore. They were fighting so savagely that Mr. Miller was enabled to creep up to them without alarming them and was soon on them with his knees and had both animals by the throat. Mr. Miller would soon have killed both but in the fiercest of the struggle the ice broke and in went the whole party. One of the animals escaped, but William crawled out on the ice with the carcass of the other and brought it to town.
Otter and mink fur was secured about here in considerable quantities in those days. Capt. Aldrich, every fur season for a good many years, had a "string" of traps out on the surrounding creeks and lakes and a great many foxes were caught by the poisoning process. It was not so very long ago that uncle James Beauvais went out one morning to his fox-baits and found the carcass of a monstrous gray wolf which, with its mate, had been prowling around the woods and beach between here and Ironton.
And when we hear these bold deer hunters relating their exploits we remember that in those days more deer were killed within half day's walk of Charlevoix, than are now brought in from their long trips, north and east. Many of our citizens will remember the day that the deer ran the length of Clinton street and jumped into Round Lake, coming ashore on the north side to be captured by the mill hands.
Now things are different. We can't catch trout with a fly from the bridge or at the mouth of the river as we used to do. A muskrat swimming the stream now calls a crowd, and a pair of antlers protruding from the back of a wagon-box attracts the multitude.
December 15, 1892
The Council is deliberating on the question of electric lights, with the start already made in providing a building and steam power the undertaking does not seem to be an unwise one.
December 15, 1892
C. F. Barnes of the Lansing Iron and Engine Works, is expected here daily for the final test of the water works. Superintendent Baldwin says everything is in fine shape, and that the system will come out in flying colors. A pressure of 100 pounds to the square inch is kept now and everything is tight. The engineer's living rooms over the pump house are receiving the finishing touch and engineer Guard will soon be settled there. They comprise a kitchen, dining room, two bedrooms, and closets. Water is being put in for domestic and closet purposes. The rooms are very neat and convenient, and will be warmed by steam radiators.
December 22, 1892
Frank E. Wood and George Pappin are putting in an ice skating rink in the vacant space back of the postoffice. It will be 80 x 100 feet in size. Water will be taken from the hydrant on Clinton street.
Charlevoix bestows upon herself a Christmas gift. She puts in her own stocking as fine a system of water-works as any town the size in Michigan can boast of. It bespeaks enterprise and a spirit of progress, and will be more far-reaching in its influence upon our town than appears upon the surface. The system will soon be self-sustaining. Now give us electric lights, a big city hotel and Charlevoix will be all wool and a yard wide, with a broad frill around the edges.
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