April 2006, Issue No. 40 -- Published by Bay-Journal.com
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- Featured History Subject -

The Wenonah Hotel and Wenonah Park.

The graphic depicting this month’s history subject is labeled, “Twin Wenonahs,” as the Wenonah Hotel and Wenonah Park were conceived together. Speaking of the history of the the Wenonah Hotel would be incomplete without including that of the Wenonah Park.

Bay City entered the 20th Century feeling great about its future. As the center of Michigan's lumbering boom over the previous two decades, the city growth in population and industries was staggering. Then in 1905 it doubled in size with the merger of West Bay City, making it the third largest community in the state. While lumbering had already reached it peak, the city had well established industries lead by a second generation of businessmen. Many of these companies were among the leaders in their field, and were not dependent on lumbering to survive.

It is with this background that many of these prominent businessmen rallied together to build a new hotel worthy of the city's prominence as a city on the go. The location of the old Fraser House (hotel) was considered the ideal spot (s.e. corner of Center Ave. and Water St. - now occupied by the Delta College Planitarium), but the estate holding the property was not receptive to the idea of updating or selling the property. That all changed in December 1906 when the hotel caught on fire and was completely distroyed. The headline regarding the fire in the the Bay City Tribune on December 24, 1906, read,


Ruins of the Fraser House.

Alfred E. Bousfield who owned the nation's largest wooden-ware business, took the lead in advancing the new hotel proposition. He invited a group of the city's top businessmen to his home on Center Avenue for their support in forming a coalition to build a new hotel. Their vision called for not only a world class hotel, but for a new city across the street from the hotel. Their dramatic called for the reshaping one of the oldest business areas in the downtown area. Several buildings would be demolished and businesses relocated. One of those businesses was the upstart boat works of Harry Defoe, that developed into the Defoe Shipbuilding Company.

Read the following article about the history behind the Wenonah Hotel and Wenonah Park, which includes photos and links to related history pages on Bay-Journal.

Articles/ {Recalling Bay City's Wenonah Twins.}

- Bay-Journal Commentary -BJ Comments by Marvin Kusmierz, Editor

Mar. 2006
Visits: 47,037
YTD 2006
Visits: 69,508
Pages: 1
Since Apr. 2002
Visits: 726,256
Views: 1,122,735
Pages: 1,049

If you are a regular viewer of Bay-Journal you and visited the website the first week of April, you may have been wondering what happened to the April issue of the magazine as the March issue was still being displayed.

I could give you a long story, the short of it is that my grandkids from the Chicago area were staying with me the last week of March consuming much of my time. On top of it I picked the Wenonah Hotel and Wenonah Park as featured history subjects for the new month. Then I realized I need more gather more information on the subject. I searched for hours on the micro-film machine at the new Wirth Library looking for some dates the information I didn’t have. It wasn’t until April 5th that I was prepared to do the article.

I can’t tell you how difficult it was in doing this month subject, nor will I try. But, I’ll say this... I don’t want to go the experience again. It took two days to complete an article that should have taken no more than two hours.

While I'm on the subject. If you or your grandparents have had the experience of being at the Wenonah Hotel or remember the old design of the Wenonah Park, it would be if you would share these memories on Bay-Journal so viewers might get a better sense of what they were like during early times.

- Featured Websites -

Featured websites from Bay-Journal's White and Yellow pages directories.

  • Contact us for a free listing.

    View White Pages!
    Bay City Bowling Association
    Bay City [Visit Website]

    If you like bowling like most the people in the Bay City, you'll truly enjoy visiting the website of the Bay City Bowling Association. They have done a nice job in making the historical records of local bowling easily available to the public. You'll find records for bowlers in the Hall of Fame, All Time High Scores, Event Photos, Weekly High Scores, and much more.

    View Yellow Pages!
    Bay Cycle Sales, Inc.
    3800 South Huron (M-13) - Bay City [Visit Website]

    Bay Cycle Sales has grown substantial since 1966 when it was founded. They offer whatever a cycler wants at their new facilties, including sports garments and accessaries that'll make you look almost as good at the cycle you ride. Their website has a "shopping cart" service so its easy to order whatever you want online no matter where you are located.

  • - Highlighted Regional News & Articles -

    Please note: The featured news is an editorial service for our viewers. Its primarily focus is on local stories appearing in various public news sources. The headline and brief description for each story is prepared by the editor of Bay-Journal. Refer to the "Online News Sources" listing for additional coverage.
    Local & Regional News.
    National News.
    World News.
    Bay-Journal Articles.
    BJ Article

    Article Updates. Update
    Online News Sources:
    Saginaw Valley -
  • Bay City Times, The
  • Flint Journal, The
  • Huron Daily News, The
  • Midland Daily News
  • MyBayCity.com
  • Saginaw News, The
  • Vassar Pioneer Times
  • WEYI TV-25 (NBC)
  • WJRT TV-12 (ABC)
  • WNEM TV-5 (CBS)
    Other Regions -
  • Detroit Free Press
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  • Michigan Newswire (Gov.)
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    Bay County Court Calendar:
  • April 2006
  • May 2006
  • June 2006
  • Thinking Out Loud!
    Have Your Article Featured Here!
    April 1, 2006 (History)
    Recalling Bay City's Wenonah Twins. ~ Marvin Kusmierz
    March 7, 2006 (History)
    Missing 1863-64 Bay City Newspaper Now Available At Library. ~ Marvin Kusmierz
    February 1, 2006 (History)
    Relics of Shipbuilding in Bay City. ~ Marvin Kusmierz

    ^ Apr. 27 - Higher Energy Costs Undermine Record Sales Of Dow Chemical Co.

    MIDLAND: Inspite of setting record in quarterly sales of $12.03 billion, Dow Chemical Company's profits declined by 11 percent during the last quarter due to the higher cost of energy.

  • Article: [Apr. 27 Kathie Marchlewski - Midland Daily News]
  • Reference: [Apr. Press Release - Dow Chemical Co.]

    ^ Apr. 25 - Bay City Scholar Among Top 20 In Nation.

    BAY CITY: Adam D. Matthews, a student at Delta College, made the All-USA Community College Academic Team sponsored by USA Today, American Association of Community Colleges and the honor society Phi Theta Kappa. Adam, a former student at Central High School in Bay City, has maintained a 3.9 grade average at Delta College, and is on the staff that publishes the Delta Collegiate Online magazine. The award ceremony was held at Long Beach, CA.

  • Article: [Apr. 25: Jessica Soule - The Saginaw News]

    ^ Apr. 24 - State Attorney General Investigating Owners of Elm Lawn Cemetery.

    SAGINAW TOWNSHIP: Mikocem LLC, owners of 28 cemeteries in Michigan, is being investigated by the State Attorney General's office for possible failure to comply Michigan's trust laws regarding cemeteries. In early March the company made the headlines of the national news media when it was revealed that Mikocem LLC had substantially raised prices for burial lots in Detroit's Woodlawn Cemetery located near the crypt of Civil Rights leader Rosa Parks. Mikocem LLC owns Elm Lawn in Bay City; East Lawn, Roselawn Memorial, and Oakwood Mausoleum in Saginaw; Midland Memorial Gardens in Midland.

  • Article #1: [Apr. 24: Matt Franklin - abc12.com]
  • Article #2: [Apr. 24: Norman Sinclair - The Detroit News]

    ^ Apr. 24 - Deranged Essexville Man Commits Suicide.

    ESSEXVILLE: A 27 year old man fatally shot himself with a shotgun after threatening his mother. Police were called to the scene on Dreary Street and were unware that the man who had fled to the garage had already killed himself.

  • Article: Apr. 24: Tim Younkman - The Bay City Times]

    ^ Apr. 23 - Critical Election Could Set Direction Of Saginaw's Future.

    SAGINAW: On May 2nd Saginaw voters will be deciding what direct the city will go to combat its high rate of criminal actitivies and violence. Voters will decide on a five-year public safety tax of 6 mils, which is considered critical to reign in violence. If the tax is voted down, 26 police officers and 20 firefighters would lose their jobs.

  • Article: [Apr. 23: Scott Davis - The Saginaw News]

    Tempers Flare At Millage Meeting: Saginaw city officials held a public meeting yesterday to address the city's need for an additional 6 mil tax increase to sustain the city's present level of police and fire personnel. Frustrations ran high among those present which led to several heated exchanges.

  • Article: [Apr. 26: LaNia Coleman - The Saginaw News]

    ^ Apr. 21 - Caro Rebuilding Together Benefit Concert Is April 30.

    CARO: The 13th Annual Rebuilding Together Benefit Concert will take place at the church of the Sacred Heart. The concert is free. A free-will offering will be taken to help support this volunteer program which helps repair/refurbish homes of needy individuals and families.

  • Article: [Apr. 21: The Huron Daily Tribune]

    ^ Apr. 20 - Judge Clears Way For Saginaw River Dredging Spoils Site.

    SAGINAW: Bay County Cercuit Judge Lawrence M. Bielawski has ruled against an injunction that would have delayed dredging of the Saginaw River and the building of a spoils site that borders Frankenlust and Zilwaukee townships. Work on the site could begin with three weeks.

  • Article: [Apr. 20: Jeremiah Stettler - The Saginaw News]

    ^ Apr. 18 - Bay City May Cut 17.5 Positions To Balance 2006-7 Budget.

    BAY CITY: City manager Robert V. Belleman's budget proposal for 2006-7 will require a cut of 17.5 employee positions unless $1.5 million in new revenue becomes available. The police and fire departments were hit the hardest, each losing six positions. The fire department cuts would close the Smith Street firestation. The parks department would lose 4.5 positions. City commissions will consider whether or not to ask voters for a tax increase of up to 3 mils to maintain the present staffing.

  • Article: [Apr. 18: Scott E. Pacheco - The Bay City Times]

    Apr 25 - Details of budget dilemma: City manager Robert V. Belleman delivered the sobering details to city commissioners last evening for the 2006-7 budget that will require a $1.5 million solution. Asking voters for a millage increase may be one solution that is not available them.

  • Article: [Apr. 25: Scott E. Pacheo - The Bay City Times]

    Apr. 25 - Money available For mini-police station: In what appears be a paradoxical announcement, Bay City has come up with money to open a new mini-police station as it looks for $1.5 million to balance its 2006-7 budget, which may require the elimination of six policemen, six firemen and one fire station. It is reported that the new mini-police station is intended to address “possible” criminal activity coming from Saginaw. While this may be a good idea, it suffers politically from bad timing in light of the city’s ongoing economic problems.

  • Article: [Apr. 25: Scott E. Pacheco - The Bay City Times]

    Apr. 26 - Police cuts justified: The city commission began reviewing the 2006-7 budget Tuesday that had been presented the previous evening by city manager Robert V. Belleman. Mr. Belleman advised the commissioners that the cuts he recommends in police officers is justify by comparison to cities of a similar size. The data in our humble is irrelevant in our opinion without other statistical details regarding crime, geography, and other factors specific to the effectness of a police department in performing its law enforcement responsibilities.

  • Article: [Apr. 26: Scott E. Pacheco - The Bay City Times]

    Apr. 27 - Fire dept. cuts opposed: A different buget item last night drew the same sentiment as the previous night as the fire department cuts were reviewed.

  • Article: [Apr. 27: Schott E. Pacheco - The Bay City Times.]

    ^ Apr. 17 - Dow Retiree Shares Important WWII History About Company.

    MIDLAND: Franklin E. "Frank" Ford, now 95 year-olds, has with the help of his family donated documents to the Midland County Historical Society about Dow Chemical Company's important contribution during WWII. Mr. Ford was intimately involved in the company's ethylene plant that developed resins leading to the production of synthetic rubber that was vital to the WWII effort.

  • Article: [Apr. 17: Cathy Heng - Midland Daily News]

    ^ Apr. 17 - Clean Air Initiative To Increase Electric Rates.

    ESSEXVILLE: Consumers Engergy will spend about $800 million in upgrades to two of its coal fired electricity plants. Upgrades at its plant in Hampton Township and West Olive will are expected to control the emission of nitrogen oxides and sulfur dioxide air pollutants. The investment complies with the Clean Air Interstate Rule established by Michigan and 27 other states.

  • Article: [Apr. 17: Jeff Kart - The Bay City Times]

    ^ Apr. 16 - Peek At Bay City's New Downtown Waterfall Park.

    BAY CITY: Visitors will soon have another reason to head to downtown Bay City. The new Water Fall park at the foot of Third Street is nearing completion. As the name implies, the park will feature a unique artificial water fall along the east bank of the river where the the city's first bridge connected with Midland Street on the west bank of the river, which was the city's busiest route throughout most of its history. The city has a historical relationship with another waterfall, the famous Niagara. Annie (Edson) Tayler while a citizen of this community, was the first person to successfully go over the Niagara Falls in a barrel on October 24, 1901.

  • Article (includes photo): [Apr. 16: Dave Rogers - MyBayCity.com]
  • Reference: Heritage Library/People/ {Annie "Edson" Taylor]

    ^ Apr. 16 - Midland Goes "Smoke Free" - Still "Not Pollution" Free.

    MIDLAND: The Midland County smoking ban starts Monday, April 17. Smoking will be officially banned in all private and public work places, except for bars, restaurants and tobacco stores. However, the smoking ban does not mean people in the county will enjoy "pollution free" air according to pollution figures available from Scorecard.com, the counties of Midland, Bay and Saginaw are among the dirtiest/worst 10% of all counties in the U.S. in terms of air releases of recognized carcinogens. This should be of equal concern to smokers and none-smokers alike. Those who felt strongly enough about the health risks of smoking to regulate their smoking neighbors should be equally concerned about the threat that other pollutants can have on their health. Unfortunately, these type of pollutants are tolerated because of their economic benefit. Below is a composite listing the top five chemicals discharged in the Tri-County area during 2002. (bold = highest value):

    Pollutant (lbs.)BayMidlandSaginawTOTAL
    Hydrochloric Acid2,300,00058,59355,8282,414,421
    Hydrofluoric Acid200,000----200,000
    Lead Compounds28,155--60,84258,997
    Manganese Compounds71,117--297,860368,977
    Zinc Compounds48,445--234,697283,142


    See the [Scorecard.org] website for detailed information the chemicals listed above. You'll also find a variety specific information for states and counties, as well as rankings for those among the worse in the nation. i.e., Texas is listed as the highest in the discharge of carinogen pollutants into the air with 7,820,753 pounds, while Michigan ranked 14th with 2,210,624 pounds. In addition, data is available specific to many companies by location.

    Since bars, restaurants and tobacco stores are exceptions to Midland County's smoking ban, it's clear that economics still over rides true concerns about health issues. One thing for sure is banning smoking has done nothing to minimize these environmental risks shared by both smokers and none-smokers alike.

  • Midland Smoking Ban Begins Monday. [Apr. 16: Kathie Marchlewski - Midland Daily News]
  • Scorecard.org pollution data for: [Midland County] [Bay County] [Saginaw County]

    ^ Apr. 15 - Vassar Residents Edgy About Annual Spring Flooding Fears.

    VASSAR: While residents of most communities have Spring fever this time of the year, Spring is a time when Vassar residents get edgy about whether Spring showers will cause the Cass River to overflow its bank and flood the community. Many are also upset that a 10 year old project to help reduce flooding concerns is at a standstill.

  • Article: [Apr. 15: Jessica Soule - The Saginaw News]

    ^ Apr. 14 - DEQ Creating New General Permit To Control Michigan's Shorelines.

    LANSING: The Department of Environmental Quality announce plans for a new general permit for controlling vegetation removal along Michigan's shorelines, and are recommending to the Legislature to let the current law expire on June 5, 2006. The DEQ has scheduled meetings in Bay City and Traverse City during May to review the findings of the March 2006 shoreline report and discuss the provisions of the new permit.

  • Article: [Apr. 14: Michigan Newswire - Michigan.gov]

    ^ Apr. 13 - Retired Bay County Library Director Hired As Fill In.

    BAY CITY: The Bay County Library Board has hired Linda Heemstra as a temporary director to fill the position that has been vacant since the former director was discharged in March. Heemstra held the position before retiring two years ago with a pension of $57,000 annually.

  • [Apr. 13: Ryan J. Stanton - The Bay City Times]

    ^ Apr. 12 - New State Tax Abatement Renaissance Zone To Help Midland.

    MIDLAND: Three new state Renaissance Zones have been created the will aid development in the communities of Wisom, Gaylord and Midland. The program provides a virtual "tax free" zone for years to aid in a communities economic development. Dow Corning's plant in Midland is seek state approval to have portions of its facilities included in the new development zone.

  • Article: [Apr. 12: Cheryl Wade & Kathie Marchlewski - Midland Daily News]
    Dow Corning. [Apr. 13: Cheryl Wade - Midland Daily News]

    ^ Apr. 12 - Group Seeking Clarification On High Dioxin Levels In Saginaw River.

    SAGINAW: Recent test results of the Saginaw River showing dioxin levels 180 times higher than state regulations allow, has raised concerns regarding the safe consumption of fish caught in the Saginaw River. More than two dozen individuals and environmental groups are asking the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for help in clarifying the risks associated with consuming contaminated fish from the river or bay.

  • Article: [Apr. 12: Jeremiah Stettler - The Saginaw News]

    ^ Apr. 11 - Road Work Scheduled On Area State Highways.

    LANSING: Several state highways in the local area are scheduled for road work according to the Michigan Newswire - Michigan.gov website as of April 11:

  • [Bay City: M-25 between Livingston & Pine, begins Apr. 17.]
  • [Buena Vista Twp.: M-15/I-75 interchange, begins Apr. 17.]
  • [Frankenmuth: M-83 between Dead Creek & Main St., begins Apr 17.]

    ^ Apr. 11 - Miss Michigan To "Deal Or No Deal" On TV This Wednesday.

    LAPEER: This year's Miss Michigan, Danelle Gay from Elaba Township, will be a participant in the the popular "Deal or No Deal" television show this Wednesday at 8 p.m. She'll be the lovely young lady holding briefcase number 10.

  • Article: [Apr. 11: James L. Smith - The Flint Journal]

    ^ Apr. 11 - Bay City's Projected Budget For 2006-07 is $1.5 Million Short.

    BAY CITY: Bay City is projecting a $1.5 million deficit for its 2006-07 budget, which could result in cuts to the police and fire departments without additional revenue. The decision may lie in the hands of voters this coming August if the city seeks a millage increase of up to 3 mills.

  • Article: [Apr. 11: Schott E. Pacheco - The Bay City Times]

    ^ Apr. 10 - Bay-Journal Off-line Since Sunday, April 9th.

    ESSEXVILLE: If you tried to reach Bay-Journal since Sunday or this morning you couldn't because our host server was having problems. Unfortunately, When this happens there is no warning and we have no way of community the situation to visitors. It appears the host served has resolved the problem and we're now back online.

    ^ Apr. 09 - Hemlock Student's Sharp Shooting Earns Six National Awards.

    HEMLOCK: When it comes to trap shooting, Collin C. Wietfeldt, a student at Hemlock High School, is one of the best in the country. Collin took six awards at the 2006 Southern Grand American Championship in Odessa, Florida, during March. The 15 year old took first place in two two events.

  • Article: [Apr. 9: Jessica Soule - The Saginaw News]

    ^ Apr. 09 - New H.H. Dow Academy Part Of Overall Plan To Reshape Tri-Cities.

    MIDLAND: Dow Chemical Company will soon ad the H.H. Dow Academy, a science and education center, to its long list of investments in Midland. But, the company's vision goes beyond its home base in Midland. Dow envisions and is planning to aid the Tri-Cities in become a business hub and attraction. Andrew Liveris, CEO of Dow Chemical, commented, "The company is proud of where it is. It's a good thing. Let's go from here. Let's wrap ourselves around the Tri-Cities."

  • Article: [Apr. 9: Kathie Marchlewski - Midland Daily News]

    ^ Apr. 06 - Governor Issues Directive For Affordable & Reliable Electricity.

    LANSING: Governor Granhold issued a directive today calling for a state plan that will assure affordable and reliable source of electricity to consumers in the near future. The state is expecting that it will need additional generation capacity by 2009.

  • [Apr. 6: Michigan Newswire - Michigan.gov]

    ^ Apr. 06 - Created For Caring Facing Desparation Situation.

    BAY CITY: Created for Caring could close its doors in the next two weeks if it does come up $20,000 in cash to meet its obligations. The charitable agency has been struggling in recent times and has been attempting to consolidate its operation to remain viable. However, increasing basic expenses for operations now has their monthly budget debt exceeding revenue. In order for the agency to continue its work with needy families it will need a commitment from citizens in the community who have the means to help the agency stay afloat by becoming a monthly contributor.

  • Article: [Apr. 6: Pati Lalonde - The Bay City Times]

    ^ Apr. 05 - Tug Boat Rescues Freighter Stuck To Bottom Of Saginaw River.

    SAGINAW: The vessel Alpen ran aground as it attempted to make a turn on the Saginaw River after unloading its cargo in Carollton Township. A tug boat had to be called in to help it get dislodged from the bottom of the river.

  • Article: [Apr. 5: The Saginaw News]
    Ship delivery next week could be last to Saginaw. [Apr. 8: Jeremiah Stettler - The Saginaw News]
    Rudders Of Ship Stuck In Saginaw River Mud Last Week Missing.
    SAGINAW: The freighter that was rescued by a tug last week because it was stuck to the bottom of the Saginaw River is missing two of its four rudders. Freighter shipments have been halted until they are found or determined not to be a navigation hazzard. -- Article: [Apr. 12: Dean Bohn - The Saginaw News]
    Missing Rudders Not Found - Army Has Remedy. Divers were not able to locate the rudders missing from the ship that got stuck to the bottom of Saginaw River near Carrollton. However, the Army Corp of Engineers has decided to dredge the area of the river used as a turning basin by freighters to keep navigation open. [Apr. 13: Jeremiah Stettler - The Bay City Times]
    Not A Done Deal. [Apr. 15: Jeremiah Stettler - The Saginaw News]

    ^ Apr. 04 - Feud Leads Resignation of Bay County Library Board Member.

    BAY CITY: The Bay County Library System which has been plaqued with more negative news than it can afford, made the news again Howard J. Wetters resigned from the board in a feud with other board members over the firing of the former library director. His letter of resignation stated he refused to participate the recents actions taken by the board which he considers irresponsible.

  • Article: Apr. 4: Ryan J. Stanton - The Bay City Times]

    ^ Apr. 03 - Township Shocked To Learn They Don't Own Local Cemetery.

    MUNDY TWP., GENESEE CO.: The Mount Hope Cemetery was been maintain and operated as a property owned by Mundy Township up until recently. A recent investigation old records for the cemetery that dates to 1836, showed the burials there may be on property owned is privately owned and has been taxed as such.

  • Article: [Apr. 3: Sally York - The Flint Journal]

    ^ Apr. 03 - Bay Area Family Y May Make The Move To Uptown.

    BAY CITY: The Bay Area Family Y may become the first to build on the Uptown At River's Edge property. The organization has been looking at a way to expand for some time as they have outgrown their present facilities located on Madison Avenue just south of Columbus Avenue.

  • Article: [Apr. 3: Ryan J. Stanton - The Bay City Times]

    ^ Apr. 03 - Consultant Being Hired To Review Debt Of Bay City Hotel.

    BAY CITY: The new Doubletree hotel which opened in 2004, has exceeded expections in all categories except one, its debt. Wenonah Park Properties Inc., a local group that owns the hotel, is seeking a private consultant that may help determine what can be done that'll assist the hotel in meeting its debt obligations.

  • Article: [Apr. 3: Scott E. Pacheco - The Bay City Times]

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