I'm heading to Michigan in another week and wondered if there were any suggestions of what to see and do? Obviously, we'll be at the Henry Ford Museum and hopefully the Walter Chrysler Museum as well, then headed up to Mackinaw City.
Is there anything I shouldn't miss out on while on the way up there as well as up in that area?
The Gilmore Museum in Hickory Corners, Michigan is my favorite car museum in the US.
The Fairlane Estate is closed but the grounds outside are open, The Picquette plant, Miller's Bar on Michigan Avenue (no relation to me)
About 2hrs west of St Ignace on the Garden Pennisula is one of only two standing original smelting ghost towns. It is a state park called Fayette, and is worth the trip. Just south of Fayette is the highest cliff on Lake Michigan. Back in the old days the locals use to get together on the weekends with their home made XXX and party on top of the cliff. They got their thrill by lighting Model T's on fire and pushing them off the cliff. If you go to the bottom of the cliff along the shoreline you will find tons of Model T's growing out of the trees as high as 30-40 foot up. Traveling to Fayette involves US 2 which is rated as the most scenic drives in the nation. You can also make a stop at Kitcha-ta-picki Big Springs and witness where a river is born. It is also a State Park and is one the many spots that Ernest Hemmingway enjoyed as he wrote his books.
In the distance of the second picture is the cliff where the Model T's are piled up..Tons of history in this area.
Not a easy life before roads and railroads emerged. When the factory closed its doors the last ship came in to Snail Harbor and annouced to everyone it was their last chance to get out. They were allowed one trunk and whatever they could wear. When I was kid the original furnishings were still in the buildings just where they were left. The State has since removed the items and put up their typical displays.
"Quaint" Fayettes' marina is now being re-fitted and commercially run; probably be a Hooters there by next year ;-((. That cliff is called Burnt Bluff BTW. This is me and dad in 1969. ws
The Piquette Plant, birthplace of the Model T Ford, is on Piquette at the corner of Beaubien in central Detroit. On your map, it is just north of I-94 (Edsel Ford Freeway) and east of M-1 (Woodward Avenue). Hours are Wednesday through Sunday from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm, or by arrangement.
Edsel Ford's house at Gaukler Point in Ste. Clair Shores is interesting, too.
When you are near Mackinaw City, visit Historic Mill Creek State Park. They have a very interesting up and down saw mill in operation.
On hour way north on I-75, plan to stop at Hartwick Pines. Original white pines such as were cut to rebuild Chicago after the big fire. Not quite as big as redwoods, but still very impressive. You might even see a Kirtland Warbler or two.
Should you go across the Mackinac Bridge, Continue on north to Sault Sainte Marie and see the locks between Lake Superior and Lake Huron. ALso, White Fish Point is nearby with the old lighthouse and the Great Lakes Ship Wreck Museum. Just outside of Paradise. (While talking about that, you can also visit Hell when you are here.)
Don, I didn't know about the cliff near Fayette, but we have been there a few times. Remind me to tell you about the ghost encounter.
You never know what you can find in the U.P.
Dad walked back to the car to get his fishing pole at Fayette. You shoulda seen the laker he pulled out from under the dock. It was so big it scared the kids.
If you have plenty of insect repellant, you can tour the ruins of the Onaway Wood Rim plant. The fire in 1926 forced many manufacturers to drive their cars off the line with adjustable wrenches after the world's primary steering wheel supplier was forced to relocate and resume production.
Also, Don't forget to stop into Frankenmuth, Michigan's Little Bavaria.
In the Detroit Area you may wish to visit the Stahl Museum in Chesterfield Twp. Also the Arsenal of Democracy on 9 Mile in St Clair Shores.(not too far from the Elanor Ford Mansion.
In the Upper Peninsula and 4 hours northerly from Mackinaw City is the old Ford Lumber Mill in Baraga that is now part of the Michigan Technological University.
The Detroit Institute of Arts in Downtown Detroit has a large collection of Ford donated art, including the famous Rivera Murals.
Driving north through Flint you might stop at the Sloan Museum. Lots of GM history there. Lunch at Frankenmuth on your way up north is always fun. In Bay City there is a Fire Engine Museum and huge antique market.
Westerly from Detroit, on your way to the Gilmore Museum is Ypsilanti with several good automotive and fire engine collections. Ypsi was the home of Tucker and the Tucker automobile.
After visiting the Gilmore you might want to duck down into Indiana 2 hrs to see the Auburn Cord Duesenburg museum, ww2 museum and a few other places in Auburn Ind.
That is just the tip of what there is to see in the region.
While you can only see the outside of the remaining buildings, I have to recommend the Ford Highland Park Plant in Detroit at Woodward Avenue and Manchester. It is a magnificent sight when you think of all the incredible history that occurred there. It's not that far from Piquette. Not the best neighborhood so it might be wise to visit early in the morning before the crackheads wake up.
Also, consider the Dodge's Meadowbrook Estate.
Check with the Chrysler Museum, they no longer have regular hours and are open for special events only.
Also, not far from Piquette & Highland Park is Henry Ford's house at 140 Edison Ave., in Detroit. It's a private home and not available for tours, but still a great thing to see!
Whatever you decide, WELCOME TO MICHIGAN!
Used to be a two story out house at Fayette. They were a subject of a previous post.
Look familiar?? ws
No pictures of the Model T remains at the bottom of the cliff?
Roger, I have mostly video and beta-max at that. The last time I was there was in 1992. I do hope to go back and take some stills of the mangled T's. Here are some pictures of the glory days of Fayette.
Chris, if you decide to go to the Soo Locks you should consider taking the boat tour through the locks. It is a very well done history lesson of the area and how shipping was born on the Great Lakes. They also have a ship museum there you can go on. It is worth every dime to take the tour.
I was at "The Henry Ford" last Saturday and it was great! You will spend all day looking at stuff!
I went to the Gilmore on Friday.We spent 6 hr.s
looking at everything.