Tuesday, November 15, 2011

J's Twin Cities Photos

The Green Bay shore, Menominee, Mich.

Dear George,
I haven’t gotten up to Menominee for three years. Our son J, though, flew up from New Orleans in August, along with his cousins Greg and Jennifer (from Seattle) and Abra (from Santa Cruz/Philly). The younger generation of nine cousins and their spouses are taking over the ownership and management of my parents’ Birch Creek farm property from my siblings and myself, and J and his cousins met there to do some sprucing up and renovation. J sent along photos he took of Menominee, its twin city Marinette, and Farm. Here are some favorite places.

This view in downtown Menominee looks out onto Ogden Avenue (now 10th Ave.), with the First National Bank building at the left and the Stephenson Building just beyond it. Washington Grade School, which we all attended, was just behind the Stephenson Building, though it’s long gone.

This was my grandfather’s drugstore building on Electric Square (now the Subway Sandwich Shop). In our grade school years my brother Steven and I ate lunch there every day in Uncle Kent’s office.

The Menominee marina is a major stopping point for boaters from Chicago, Milwaukee, and other Lake Michigan ports. We’d go fishing for perch at the marina and swim at the breakwater next door.

In my youth the Lloyd Building was the home of the Montgomery Ward department store and our town’s biggest movie theater. I saw my first nighttime movie there, “Meet Me in St. Louis” starring Margaret O’Brien.

Jozwiak’s tavern is our favorite local family gathering place (for Wabashes and beer by the pitcher). We’d hang out with my mom and dad in the 6-person booth at the rear.

Here are Farm workers Greg, J, and Abra taking a break and enjoying a softserve cone at Colonel K’s.

Dunlap Square is the center of Marinette’s downtown business district. We’d go to the movies there as kids, then stop in at Goodfellows cigar store to buy some penny candy.

Lauermans Department Store (left), now extinct, was the region’s most important shopping destination. I liked to visit the Boy Scout department in the basement and look at the camping gear.

Marinette and Menominee have grand old public library buildings dating back to the turn of the last century. Our Aunt Martha worked at the Stephenson Public Library in Marinette which was donated to the community by lumberman Isaac Stephenson in 1903.

Mickey-Lu’s, home of the world’s greatest cheeseburgers, is often the first stop for our family travelers driving into Marinette. It was there in my childhood years and seems to be doing even better today. There mere thought of Mickey-Lu’s makes me salivate.

My parents moved to their renovated Farm property in Birch Creek, about five miles north of Menominee, in the early 1970s. Here’s Birch Creek Road.

The farm house was built in 1886, fifteen years after the Peshtigo fire inundated Birch Creek. It’s hard to describe how gratifying it was for Vic and Doris to live here.

Here’s the Farm living room where we spent a lot of happy moments, kidding around, admiring our children, drinking beer, sharing reminiscences.

Not to mention the pool room, site of much family competition. Steven was indisputably the family champion.

My dad, with construction expertise and skilled labor from Jim D. and George J., built rooms for music, art, reading, and sleeping in the barn’s interior.

Here’s some of my dad’s stained glass work which brightens up the barn’s interior. Farm was a all-consuming, rewarding project for my folks, and they would be thrilled by its adoption by their grandchildren.

[All photos by JML, August 2011]

G-mail Comments
-Phyllis S-S (11-16): Dave, Love the photos - Justin looks more and more like you. And the drugstore - I'd heard so much about it, lovely to finally see what it looks like. Happy Thanksgiving - Phyllis

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