MSU homecoming Grand Marshall, Ernest Green, sat in on a special screening of the documentary The Road to Little Rock. The documentary tells the courageous story of one visionary judge and nine determined teenagers who are now known as The Little Rock Nine. Ernest Green, who was one of the nine students that were a part of this historic movement and subject of the film, talked about his groundbreaking time at Michigan State. “Any student coming here should see this as a lifetime opportunity and its more than going to classes, it’s getting to know people and building relationships,” said Green.
Women have overcome obstruction on their way to leadership positions, but plenty of obstacles still exist for women pursuing those roles. Hillary Clinton’s loss in the 2016 presidential election could be considered the ultimate heartbreak in a career of service and fighting to break through a glass ceiling of leadership opportunities, but her campaign for the presidency changed women’s history no matter the outcome. Meet other women, primarily from Michigan, who have also made contributions to women’s history and broke through barriers to achieve in many different fields of work.
By JOSH BENDER
Capital News Service
LANSING — Three Lake Superior lighthouses, including one in the Upper Peninsula, were recently added to the National Register for Historic Places. The Presque Isle Harbor Breakwater Light was built in 1941 to assist in shipping out iron ore mined in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, according to U.S .Coast Guard historian Daniel Koski-Karell, who applied to get the lighthouses added to the register. Standing in Presque Isle Harbor, the light is still used for this purpose today. The harbor is the ninth-busiest in the Great Lakes, according to the National Register application. In addition to shipping out iron ore, the harbor receives freighters bearing coal to fuel the Presque Isle Power Plant.
By ERIC FREEDMAN
Capital News Service
LANSING — The roster of Lower Peninsula sites on the National Register of Historic Places has grown by four with new designations in Saugatuck, Elk Rapids, Alpena and Detroit. Among them are a 1904 pump house and a turn-of-the-20th-century church, both now serving as local history museums.
“The National Register is the official list of the nation’s historic places worthy of preservation,” according to the National Park Service (NPS), which administers the program. Sites must be significant “in American history, architecture, archeology, engineering and culture” and “possess integrity of location, design, setting, materials, workmanship, feeling and association.”
Under NPS guidelines, they are “associated with events that have made a significant contribution to the broad patterns of our history or with the lives of significant persons in our past.”
In West Michigan, the brick Saugatuck Pump House on the bank of the Kalamazoo River marks where Saugatuck developed its water system after devastating fires wiped out a hotel and other buildings. No organized fire department existed at the time, and the village was gaining popularity as a tourist destination, connected by steamship to Chicago and by rail to Grand Rapids, according to the nomination. The building was abandoned in the 1930s because its pumping and generating functions were inadequate, and it was later renovated as a cottage by private tenants.
“Statues, what statues?” was what Kaylee Mead, legislative aide to State Rep. Tom Leonard, (R-DeWitt) said when asked about the historical statue pieces located on the front lawn of the Michigan State Capitol. “I have never noticed any statues before and I walk past them everyday,” Mead said. “I don’t know if anyone really notices them because we are all just focused on what we have to do for the day.”
Michigan State University advertising junior Ben Grider said he grew up in this area and had taken many trips to the state Capitol in grade school but does not remember any of the outside ornaments being explained in his tour. “I definitely have noticed the statues before because I thought that they were interesting but I never have known what they mean or why they are there,” Grider said. “ I think some students might notice them but I doubt anyone pays much attention to them.”
Austin Blair is the subject of the statue right down the front walkway of the Capitol Building and was chosen for this spot because he was the governor of Michigan during the Civil War, according to Phil Goodrich, legislative director to Leonard.
By ERIC FREEDMAN
Capital News Service
LANSING — They were shaped by the mines, forests and quarries of the Upper Peninsula — and by the companies that owned those resources. They were communities that drew workers to the UP from across the globe in search of jobs and opportunities. And today they’re largely gone. Some, like Ford River, Nahma and Pequaming, still rate a pinprick on the official Michigan Department of Transportation highway map. Some, like Simmons, Shelldrake and Emerson are nowhere to be found on that map, even with a magnifying glass.
Ransom Eli Olds, the founder of Olds Mobile Works, later to be called Oldsmobile, is remembered for the contributions he made to the automotive industry in Lansing by the R.E. Olds Transportation Museum at 240 Museum Drive. But how effective is the museum — so full of Lansing history — when not many know it is there? Photo Journal: R.E. Olds Transportation Museum
On a non-descript street in Grand Ledge is an old house that was set for demolition many years ago. However, instead of meeting its inevitable fate, a group of people decided that it was worth saving—and turned it into one of the most notable places in the town. “The home was owned by the Methodist Church, and they were planning to tear it down in order to make way for a parking lot,” Grand Ledge Historical Society president Marilyn Smith said. “It was just too interesting to let go. So we bargained with the city, and they decided if we restore the building and kept it in shape for five years, we could keep it.”
Hence, in 1984, the Grand Ledge Historical Society was born.