Do You Know These 52 Things About Michigan?
I was burning some internet time and stumbled across some things I knew and mostly didn't know about the great state of Michigan.
1. Michigan is the only state that consists of two peninsulas that include an upper and a lower. Florida is known for being called the Peninsula State...but we know who the real peninsula state really is.
2. Sault Ste. Marie was the first European settlement in the Midwest back in 1668. Its also the 3rd oldest settlement west of the Appalachians.
3. In 1846, Michigan was the first to do away with the death penalty for all crimes other than treason.
4. Many refer to Michigan as the Wolverine State. The first wolverine that has been spotted in 200 years was in Huron County in 2004. No wolverine has been spotted since.
5. If you like hamburgers and steak, the world's largest Holstein herd is located at Green Meadow Farms is the village named Elsie...great cow name.
6. Rogers City is the home of the world's largest limestone quarry.
7. Colon may have a sh@#%y name but its a town known for magic. There are several magic supply manufacturers in the town and is also the resting place of Harry Blackstone Sr.
8. 1939 was when the first air conditioned car was built by Detroit's Packard Motor Car company.
9. You can't go to the U.P. without stumbling across a band called Da Yoopers. Dey're pretty famous for singin' 'bout deer huntin' an' farts. Ah, good ol' deer camp!
10. People in the U.P. are referred to as Yoopers. But everyone in the U.P. refer to everyone who live below the Mackinac bridge at "Trolls". A couple more Lower Peninsula names are flatlanders and lopers.
11. Michigan has the highest payback for returnable bottles and cans, with 10 cents back for most products. Michigan leads the country in recycling but because of our greedy neighbors like Ohio, Indiana and Wisconsin who fraudulently cash in are costing the state over $10 million for their dirty deeds.
12. Traverse city is the cherry pie capital of the world. If you love cheery pie then make sure and visit the National Cherry Festival each July.
13. The cereal capital of the world is in Battle Creek. The home of the Kellogg Company. Frosted flakes...mmmmmmmm!
14. The oldest soft drink on the market is Coke...no...is Pepsi...no...its...Vernor's Ginger Ale which was created by a Detroit druggist.
15. The Michigan Dogman is a folklore beast that was allegedly spotted in Wexford County in 1887. Over the years several others have said they have saw the elusive Dogman...which would mean there would have to be a Dogwoman to help create more or the Dogman is nearly a 140 years old.
16. While we are on folklore there is a whole other breed of Michigan call cryptid or the melon heads of Ottawa County. The story goes as that some children with hydrocephalus that lived in an insane asylum near Holland's Felt Mansion. The kids somehow mutated, escaped and went feral and are allegedly still hiding in the woods waiting to attack.
17. If you remember the Gordon Lightfoot song, the Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald then you know about the shipwreck. The bell from the ship is displayed at the Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum at the Whitefish Point Light Station.
18. If you love freshwater...Michigan has a ton of it...well actually the nation's longest freshwater shoreline.
19. The total distance of Lake Superior's shoreline is equivalent to the distance between Duluth to the Bahamas.
20. Of the five great lakes, Michigan touches four of them that include Erie, Huron, Michigan and Superior.
21. The world's only floating post office is located in Detroit and is called the J.W. Westcott II. The ship delivers mail to ships as they pass under the Ambassador Bridge.
22. Where is the only remaining hand cranked chain ferry in the United States? It is located in Saugatuck and was built in 1838.
23. Michigan also has the first three tunnels that are legally connect to two different countries. The St. Clair Tunnel connects Port Huron with Sarnia, Ontario. The Michigan Central Railway Tunnel and the Detroit Windsor Tunnel both connect D-town and Windsor, Ontario.
24. In 1879, Detroit was the first city in the nation to have phone number. The city had grown so large the operator couldn't route the calls by a persons name. This may be mind boggling to those who only know of cell phones.
25. In 1908, Detroit was the first city to have a concrete paved road.
26. If you are into weathervane's...the largest one ever built was made by Whitehall Metal Studios of Montague. It is 48 feet tall and is located on the corner of Dowling and Water Streets.
27. In 1901, a ship by the name of Ella Ellenwood sank during a storm. Although the ship was never recovered, the nameplate from the ship floated a shore in Montague a year after it sank.
28. The legend of Paul Bunyan is said to be derived from a French/Canadian lumberjack by the name of Fabian Fournier. He worked in the late 1800s for a lumber company in the Grayling area.
29. Oscoda says its the original home of Paul Bunyan...well since the first story written about Bunyan was in the Oscoda Press in 1906. Which is also the home of the Pual Bunyan Festival that goes on each September.
30. And the legend of Paul Bunyan continues on in Ossineke who have a giant statue of Paul Bunyan and his blue ox known as Babe.
31. There is a 24 foot high bronze equestrian statue that was built in the 1990s at Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture park in Grand Rapids. The design was based on a creation by Leonardo DaVinci.
32. These are hard to find but do exist since I saw two of them last year and that is Petoskey stones. These are made from 350 million-year-old fossilized limestone. You can really keep the kids busy looking for these...and they are pretty fun to look for, for you adults as well.
33. The city of Detroit sits atop a gigantic salt mine that according to some estimates, there is enough salt under the city to last the world 70 million years.
34. Michigan had the first tribally owned casino. It was named the Kings Club Casino that was operated by the Ojibwe Indians of Bay Mills.
35. In 1812 the British took over Detroit but in 1813 in the River Raisin Massacre, Detroit was reclaimed during the Battle of Lake Erie. This battle resulted in the largest amount of American casualties in our countries history of war.
36. The largest crucifix in the world is located at Woods Catholic shrine in Indian River.
37. Apparently it took a song written in 1942 by Glen Miller, "(I've Got A Gal In) Kalamazoo, for the country to learn how to spell Kalamazoo.
38. The first outdoor shopping mall in the United States was the Kalamazoo Mall.
39. Kalamazoo used to be the original home of Gibson Guitars. There was a low budget guitar also built in the city back in the 60s and 70s called the Kalamazoo.
40. In 1999, a Roseville man was convicted for breaking a law from 1897. The man fell out of a canoe and a few F-bombs came out in earshot of women and children and he got arrested. The original law prohibited indecent, immoral, obscene, vulgar or insulting language in the presence or hearing of any woman or child. In 2002 the mans conviction was overturned and the law was stricken from the books. So I guess you can F-bomb away the next time you fall out of a canoe.
41. There is still a law on the Michigan books that says its against the law to contumeliously reproach God...I think this coincides with the biblical law of not using the Lord's name in vain.
42. Flint passed a law in 2008 saying police could arrest anyone whose pants sagged so low as to expose their underwear or bare butts. I wonder how that law went over in the plumbers union?
43. Brighton and Grand Rapids both have a pretty funny law on the books that could be trouble for brothers and sisters. The is against being annoying. Not sure we have enough jails to enforce this one.
44. Before Grand Rapids was named one of the best cities in American to live, a Newsweek article in 2011 said it was one of America's Dying Cities. So the city all got together and made a youtube video of everyone in town singing the song American Pie which later made Newsweek disclaim the original article.
45. In 1817 the University of Michigan was founded but U of M was not the original name...and here it is...Catholepistemiad. Try having a bunch of cheerleaders do a pep rally having to chant that name.
46. John F. Kennedy made a speech in 1961 at the University of Michigan and referred to himself as a graduated of the Michigan of the East. This came from a reference of people referring to U of M as the Harvard of the West and JFK was a graduate of Harvard.
47. Here is a short of famous U of M graduates that include former President Gerald R. Ford, Madonna and Darth Vader also known as voice actor James Earl Jones. Luke...where is my diploma!
48. The very first agricultural college in America is Michigan State University.
49. U of M is not the only Michigan college with some famous graduates. The infamous missing Teamster Jimmy Hoffa, actor Robert Urich, director Sam Raimi and NBA superstar Magic Johnson.
50. The son of Henry Ford, Edsel Ford, died 14 years before the line of cars bearing his name came out. Edsel designed the Model A for his dad along with the braking and transmission systems.
51. Have you experienced the singing sand beaches of Grand Haven? Apparently when walking the beaches there the sand makes a whistling sound. I don't know about this one, I've walked there several times and never heard a whistle.
52. The hub of the Polish celebration of Paczki Day is based in Hamtramck.