The History Center of Cheboygan County

The History Center of Cheboygan County We EXPLORE the history of Cheboygan County so you can DISCOVER your connection to the past and IMAGINE how you can help shape your community's future.
HCCC is a local history museum located in Cheboygan County Michigan.
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Our museum campus is comprised of an 1880s Sherriff's Residence and Jail, a 1912 jail addition, a 19th century log cabin, and a modern exhibit hall. A World War II troop car was recently added to the collection and campus. Our exhibits tell the story of Cheboygan County from the time of the earliest european settlers in 1846 to the present.

Mission: Through exhibits, vibrant programming and rich historical resources, the History Center of Cheboygan County explores the history of Cheboygan County so that residents and visitors can discover their connection to the past and be inspired to help shape their communities future.

04/16/2019

Our new cover photo is meant to show the sheer enormity of the world's largest sawdust pile, right here in Cheboygan, Michigan!

The History Center of Cheboygan County's cover photo
04/16/2019

The History Center of Cheboygan County's cover photo

This painting of the Cheboygan River was recently donated to us from the Benzie Area Historical Society. A Benzonia area...
04/16/2019

This painting of the Cheboygan River was recently donated to us from the Benzie Area Historical Society. A Benzonia area lady, Dorothy Hensel, painted it while here on vacation. Date of the painting is unknown, but this is a memory a volunteer for the Cheboygan County History Center has of it:
“The building on the far left is Cheboygan Fuel Co. aka Gar Atchinson’s building, next is Millard Girard’s Market and the house along side, kind of behind, is his brother, Art Girard’s house. The next building facing State St. at one time was Brown’s Radiator Repair Shop. I think it is a veterinarian shop now. Next to that on the river is the old DNR building that was moved out on the Riggsville Road as a home, and the two buildings on the far right on the river at one time belonged to the Passenos, torn down long ago.”.
We are hoping someone can help us an approximate year of the photo.

Still known by some simply as the “Garment Factory”, it actually started as a cigar factory. This building sits at t...
03/31/2019

Still known by some simply as the “Garment Factory”, it actually started as a cigar factory. This building sits at the northeast corner of Main Street and Mackinaw Avenue and was built by the City in 1920 on property formerly housing the Ming Livery Barn. The city made an agreement with the American Cigar Co. that they would build it if American would rent it for a certain number of years. In 1927, Alpena Garment Co. rented the still city-owned building and continued as a large employer until 1940, when Great Lakes Garment Co. took over until 1955. Various leasers used the building until 1978 when it was purchased from the City by several Cheboygan residents and has been used primarily as office space by a myriad of other enterprises ever since.

Cheboygan's greatest threat of catastrophic flood - 1922 FORTIETH YEAR,   NO.    6.CHEBOYGAN,   MICHIGAN,   THURSDAY,   ...
03/14/2019

Cheboygan's greatest threat of catastrophic flood - 1922

FORTIETH YEAR, NO. 6.
CHEBOYGAN, MICHIGAN, THURSDAY, APRIL 13. 1922.
AL. H. WEBER, EDITOR.
CHEBOYGAN RIVERS ON RAMPAGE
RIVERS RISE TO HIGHEST POINTS IN HISTORY, AND ERRONEOUS STORIES PUT PEOPLE
IN A NERVOUS STATE. FLOOD AT ITS CREST AND SNOW ABOUT GONE

GREATEST LOSS WILL PERHAPS BE AT TOWER AND TO MULLET LAKE RESORT PROPERTY

For a week high water has been threatening- the dam in this city, and also the Cheboygan Electric Light & Power Co. dam on the Black River at Alverno. Almost every day the water has crept to a higher mark and there halted, and it was thought the crest was reached, but augmented by another downpour again the flood has risen until it has long ago passed the highest water mark ever known on the Black or Cheboygan or Indian Rivers.

No particular fears have been held that the major portion of either one of the dams would not withstand the extra pressure against them, but there has been the ever present danger that the water would go over the
approaches to the dams and in this way start a break that would perhaps soon develop into a serious washout that would cause no little damage. It was not thought possible that a flood would ever get high enough on the Black river to top the new construction work there, but the water
swiftly rose to that point Monday night, and it was only through the quick marshalling of sufficient help to build a dirt embankment to keep back the flood that stopped the threatened destruction of the dam.

All day Tuesday men and teams were kept busy adding more dirt to the embankments, building them higher, and fending off the ice cakes, stumps, logs and rubbish that came floating down the stream. Every possible gate and sluiceway was opened and ran full, making
quite a sizeable falls and rapids at the foot of the dam.
The flood rose a couple of inches Monday night, but only gained an inch Tuesday, this giving the workmen an abundance of time to perform Monday night the men working on the dam became thoroughly scared
and wanted to blast out the locks as an added means for the water to escape. Wiser heads, however, prevailed upon them to fight the battle against the flood out on other lines that would not threaten the destruction of the entire plant, as a charge of dynamite placed in the locks would perhaps have done and also sent the added flood down onto the Cheboygan dam.

In looking over the problem up there it does not seem dangerous in the least, now that the additional dirt embankments have been piled up around the face of the dam. Should the water get to a point where these
embankments won't hold it is easy for a few men to cut a channel across the highway leading down to the dam from the main highway.This would spill the water down across a field for about a third of a mile where it would enter the main channel again, and any cut out that the escaping water would cause there could very easily be plugged as the water receded.

At the dam at the paper mill in the city conditions are quite different as there is no natural spillway that could be opened up that would not threaten to cut out the whole structure. Perhaps the only solution of the problem confronting the men there is to cut out either the locks or the old water course that passed under the mill that was torn down several years ago. This water course was filled after the mill was torn down, but when the water first began to threaten two sluiceways were put in at this place, and these have been carrying off a considerable
volume of water. People below the dam have been somewhat alarmed since the water began to get so far above high water mark, as they thought the city's business section would be flooded and much valuable property carried out into the lake should the dam break. There has been no time when the dam proper seemed in danger, and adequate means will be resorted to as above mentioned before any unnecessary chances are taken that might bring about a destruction of the dam. Even though the dam would collapse and let the water all spill out, it is not likely that much of a flood would result below the mill, as there is not sufficient water in storage in close proximity to the dam to create any devastating flood. Above the John
F. bridge the river narrows down and continues narrow for over half a mile.
No great flood can come down that channel that the channel below the mill would not care for.
If the water is permitted to escape through the locks or by the other
ways proposed the river below the mill would not go out of its banks.
The principal concern is in the great loss it would occasion the Paper
Company to repair the damage and necessitating a cessation of operations
until repairs could be made

As a reminder, Daylight Savings Time starts this Sunday, March 10th. Did you know that back in the day, if you wanted to...
03/08/2019

As a reminder, Daylight Savings Time starts this Sunday, March 10th. Did you know that back in the day, if you wanted to know the exact time in Cheboygan, you would need to run down to the Fexer Jewelry Store. The store was on Main Street right across from the current Post Office.

1999 March Madness!
02/28/2019

1999 March Madness!

Lest we forget the already gone Gold Front. Earliest date we have of the building being in the McClelland family's name ...
02/15/2019

Lest we forget the already gone Gold Front. Earliest date we have of the building being in the McClelland family's name is 1937.

Ice Carnival 1945/46
01/28/2019

Ice Carnival 1945/46

Horse racing, on land or water, was a big pastime prior to the automobile.
01/19/2019

Horse racing, on land or water, was a big pastime prior to the automobile.

The History Center of Cheboygan County's cover photo
01/08/2019

The History Center of Cheboygan County's cover photo

Special edition of the Tribune but paperboy was the first paying job for many of us!
01/07/2019

Special edition of the Tribune but paperboy was the first paying job for many of us!

Another photo the History Center needs names, a year and location. Denny Jewell, we've heard you would probably be able ...
12/23/2018

Another photo the History Center needs names, a year and location. Denny Jewell, we've heard you would probably be able to lend some help here.

Getting to be this time of the year. Here is another donated photo that does not have names, date or a location. Please ...
12/16/2018

Getting to be this time of the year. Here is another donated photo that does not have names, date or a location. Please help us in identifying them,

11/26/2018

Apparently Elias Flagler was quite a con man. In 1914, he had nearly 200 Cheboygan unwary buyers of stock in the first subscription to build cyclecars here. He originally hired some workers and had some parts brought into the Co-op factory on Cuyler St. to give the illusion that every thing was going as planned. Excuses were plentiful, such as parts suppliers were backlogged, actually deciding to switch to a shaft drive instead of a chain drive and others. The company produced only a few vehicles and went into receivership in October of 1914. Supposedly Flagler drove off in one of the vehicles built here and was never seen here again.

A cyclecar was a type of small, lightweight and inexpensive car manufactured mainly between 1910 and the late 1920s. Cyclecars were characterized by their use of a bicycle-like chain instead of the drive-shaft of an automobile. They were largely contrived to fill a gap in the market between the motorcycle and the car, and inexpensive because the parts were obtained from wherever they could be gotten the cheapest. In Cheboygan, the parts would merely be put together and shipped out on the railroad. Strangely enough though, bicycle chains weren't used in the few vehicles assembled here.

Here is a list of those first Cheboygan subscribers. Recognize any names?THE SCAMMING OF CHEBOYGAN

Henry Carrier H. J. Laway
Daniel Fisher Elmer Johnson
Al. H. Weber Chas. F. Kitchen
Chas. Abernathy Chris. Finneauf
F. E. Brackett Philip Londreau
Ohas. J. Doherty J. B. McArthur
Ernest Lehahn John O'Grady
C, J. McArthur George LeBianc
J. A. Bohn A, Frambach 0.
Wm. h. Gingrich John Lighthali
G. Schultz Julian Siankiewicz
Vet S. Moloney Arthur E. Garland
F. S. Mordaun Mrs. Geo. Langdon
J. F. Moloney E. A. Bouchard
William D, Gaynor Frank Y. Lagary
J. A. Gallagher Dr. C. B. Tweedale
Albert E. Birdsall J. B. Lund & Sons
Lyon & Chimner Kenneth McLean
Miss Effie Murphy John W. Karwick
Horatio McArthur Leon Karwik
Edward Karwik C. Gilmore
M. Carmody Alfred Gignac
Chas. Schaefer Geo. Sperry
Mrs. D. E. Dues John Murphy
Fred Steiner Chas. Rutzen
C. Mills Will Spies
Alien Lalonde Dr. M. J. Cain
'William Bourrow Alex Simpson
Arthur Girard Peter J. Bilitzke
H. A. McKinnon D. J. Galbraith
P. M. Zorn F. J. Stencil
G. MacKinnon S. H. Sprague
A. Rouville M. E. Sargent
S. J. Duffin Louis Lavigne
Edward Schmidt William Barrett
Arman*d Groulx Alfred Robert
P. M. Zorn. The Glover Co.
Minnie Johns R. B. Matt
Jas. F. Gerow Ella Larue
Fred Ritchie L. Marquott
Ingoald Olsen R. J. McCartney
Geo. P. Gardner George O’Brien
M. F. Malek E. M. Pennell
W. J. Lynn Francis Conway
Jos. Rousia Charles Dunn
W. A. Anderson J. M. Corkey
Jos. Buerger J. H. Myers
Raymond Myert J. H. Myert
A, M. Gerow J. C. Rittenhouse
D. J. Mc-Donald J. M. Donnelly
S. J. Sullivan H. W. Robinson
James F. Cain James F. Shepherd
Kenneth Penoyer Theo. C. Swontek
Theodore Jewell Charles E. A|rore
Thomas Simpson Frank S. Schramn
Alexander Lalonde A. W. Peppier
Dudley & Barber Frank J. Bashaw
Sangster & Riggs Ryam Richardson
A, B. MacGregor Charles Huntsler
Louis Guetschow Will Bourrie
J. I. St. Jean J. M. Zen Zen
J. R. Johnson Wm. O. Schenk
Walter Grisbrook Joseph J. Malek
Hugh Hoban Jas. Kwetansky
A. Bowen
John Dufresne J. F. Amo
Clyde Adams Emma Clune
Ella M. Stevenson Edward N. Durand
Chas. Le Baron R. H. Roussin
Jas. Dufresne Oscar C. Cook
James Ball Mrs. F, J". Hohler
C. J. Louisigneau W. Cain
Otto C. Scott Wm. C. Johns
Vincent Burger Will J. Wheeler
I. Frazer Dan Tracy
L. D. Hagerty C. P. Haberling
Fred Payer Ed. Monaghan
Fred Nelson John E. O'Neil
W. L. Lafond J. S. Jones
Richard Tobin D. M. Butterfield
C. A. Spence F. L. DeGowia
G. H. Wheeler M.. J. Cain
Jos. A Poirier E. F. Smith
Paul M. Bourrie A. J. Lalonde
Harry Tallman Jas. H. Irving
James A. Shields A. E. Belanger
Albert E. Jewell W. L. Martin
Walter Grisbrook Rose T. Metivier
Lillian Rabideau Vanda Swantek
G. A. Hugill Ray Lynts
Joseph Caswell Frank Dubois, Jr.
S. A. St. Amour
Pat Hoban Ed. Harvey
Jos. Gunsoius John. Laprairie
Mabel McRae Frank Duboise
George Lapoint Mrs. Charles Rutzen
Cheboygan Hardware Co.
George W. Thompson
Star Steam Laundry
J. H Clune Furniture Co.
Elizabeth C. Hamilton
Raymond P. Johnson
Stephen Stankewicz
Mrs, Walter Campy
James F. McArthur
Peter Nickles & Son
J.H. Barrowcliff & Son
Mrs. W, H. Conboy
James. Kwiatkowski
Mrs. J. P. Moloney
Capt. Samsul Hedegaard:
Mrs. E. A. Bouchard
Rev. Fr. J. B. E Magnan
Charley A. Sweeso
John B. Boucher
B. Meggitt & Son
Miss Mabel L. Dickson
Mrs. Vet S. Moloney
Jos. L. Beauchamp
Mrs. 0. S. Reilley
Mrs. Fred Steiner
Frank J. Sweeney

Just in case you missed it !
11/18/2018

Just in case you missed it !

Before there were playoffs, high school football teams were ranked. The 1963 CHS Chiefs ended up the highest ranked team...
10/29/2018

Before there were playoffs, high school football teams were ranked. The 1963 CHS Chiefs ended up the highest ranked team at season's end, thus proclaiming them The Class B State Champions.

This salt-well located on the east side of the Cheboygan River just below the Paper Mill was intended to reach a salt ve...
10/14/2018

This salt-well located on the east side of the Cheboygan River just below the Paper Mill was intended to reach a salt vein. It would then copy similar salt mining ventures near mills in Bay City, Saginaw, even Muskegon. At those sites, salt beds were so near to the surface they created briny springs along the banks of the rivers lumbermen were working on. In fact, salt formations were widely prevalent from a line across the state from these cities southward. The glaciers only left sporadic deposits further to the north. At mill sites where it was prevalent, the lumber barons would siphon the salty brine into kettles, boil it off and collect the salt. Salt was a very lucrative commodity at the time, especially for the storage of meat and fish. Fuel for the burners was readily available from the wood scraps and sawdust from the mill. There were multiple attempts to hit a salt vein along the Cheboygan River, beginning in 1881. A $40,000 stock company was even formed, of which Thompson Smith, who established Duncan City, gave $1,750 to the project. Unfortunately, no salt was ever found.

An iconic Main Street building. Located at the corner of Nelson and Main, it currently houses the Crystal Gates, an anti...
09/09/2018

An iconic Main Street building. Located at the corner of Nelson and Main, it currently houses the Crystal Gates, an antique emporium, but started as a bottling factory and in between was an auto parts store, several car dealerships, a western store/ pawn shop, video rental and maybe some we missed!

How many of you remember this WCBY radio program?
08/19/2018

How many of you remember this WCBY radio program?

07/31/2018
Shanty Boys Base Ball Club of Cheboygan

Congratulations to the Shanty Boys Base Ball Club of Cheboygan, on their win over Ludington last weekend! Their final game of the season is Saturday, August 4, at 1 in Mackinaw City at the Heritage Village at Mackinaw, stop by and cheer them on!

The Shanty Boys were victorious against the Ludington Mariners by a score of 25 to 14. It was a hard-fought contest and both clubs played well. The Shanty Boys look forward to heading to Ludington in 2019 for a rematch.

Floor tile from Fralick's gas station, corner of Mackinaw Ave.and Main St. saved by his son Gary. Never met a nicer man!
07/24/2018

Floor tile from Fralick's gas station, corner of Mackinaw Ave.and Main St. saved by his son Gary. Never met a nicer man!

07/18/2018

Just a reminder, the History Center is open Wednesday thru Saturday 10 til 2. Take a tour or just come and see our new exhibits. You can't beat the price, it's free!

Just to take our mind off this heat wave.Skiing at Black Mountain, late 50's early 60's. Tow ropes only!  A reminder tha...
07/04/2018

Just to take our mind off this heat wave.
Skiing at Black Mountain, late 50's early 60's. Tow ropes only! A reminder that except for the 4th of July, the History Center is open for tours Wednesday thru Saturday 10:00-2:00. Tours are free but donations are encouraged.

The Commodore, best perch dinners ever!
06/27/2018

The Commodore, best perch dinners ever!

The History Center of Cheboygan County's cover photo
06/14/2018

The History Center of Cheboygan County's cover photo

The History Center is opening Wednesday, June 13th for the summer. Hours are 10:00 to 2:00 Wednesday thru Saturday. you ...
06/07/2018

The History Center is opening Wednesday, June 13th for the summer. Hours are 10:00 to 2:00 Wednesday thru Saturday. you can't beat the price, we're FREE !
One of our exhibits will focus on sports, featuring the Cheboygan Sports Hall of Fame. We need help identifying some things about one of our photos; the players missing names, the team name and the approximate year they played.
HOPE TO SEE YOU ALL AT LEAST ONCE THIS SUMMER!!!

Part of 1909 Cheboygan Plat Map. By then, there were two railroads coming through town, the Detroit and Mackinaw(D&W), i...
05/30/2018

Part of 1909 Cheboygan Plat Map. By then, there were two railroads coming through town, the Detroit and Mackinaw(D&W), identified on bottom left of the plat by the “RY.” and the Michigan Central(MC) just above that as “R.”. The two lines came in separately all the way and it looks like the D&W doesn't even go past the Depot, the first little dots on the MC line past Court St. As one who grew up near the railroad tracks, the D&W line running parallel to the MC all the way to at least Division St. is surprising.
Other interesting things are the two bridges going over the river to the sawdust pile, the definitive location of the Pea Canning Factory and what we know as the Co-op in the block along the D&W line between Seymour and Court streets. The brick Haut building there now wasn't built until 1918. The log booms in the mill pond probably weren't there much longer, as 1911 is near the end of the lumbering era in the area.

Address

427 Court St
Cheboygan, MI
49721

General information

The museum is open seasonally, Wednesday-Saturday, from June 1 to the last weeked in September. The hours are from 10:00-2:00. Admission is Free

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