Benzie's Historical Crimes
Sep
12
4:00 PM16:00

Benzie's Historical Crimes

Interlochen Arts Academy instructor and BAHS Board President Brian McCall will present “Benzie’s Historical Crimes”, a short history of the most infamous crimes in the county at the Museum at 4:00 PM on September 12th as part of the Benzie Academy Lecture series.

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Aug
8
7:00 PM19:00

Benzonia Academy Lecture: The Blantyre Malaria Project

Lecturer: Dr. Terrie Taylor. University Distinguished Professor in the College of Osteopathic Medicine at Michigan State University

Terrie Taylor’s battle against malaria,which she refers to as the”Voldemort of parasites,” has been waged since 1986. An internationally recognized scientist and physician, Terrie spends six moths of the year in the African nation of Malawi,conducting malaria research and treating patients, the vast majority of whom are children. The Blantyre Malaria Project, established by Terrie and Professor Malcolm Molyneux (Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine) has carried out outstanding research and patient care in the area of pediatric malaria, specifically cerebral malaria a syndrome in which the brain is involved.

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Crystal Lake Woodies and Michigan Boat Building
Aug
2
6:00 PM18:00

Crystal Lake Woodies and Michigan Boat Building

The Benzie Area Historical Society is offering “Crystal Lake Woodies and Michigan Boat Building” at the “boat barn” of local resident Jon Peele on Friday, August 2, 6-8:00 p.m. Guests will be able to view his collection of vintage racing and wooden power boats dating back to the 1930s as well accessories, books, and memorabilia. All of the boats in Peele’s collection have been restored by professional boat restorers with great care taken to restore them to what they looked like when they left their builder’s plant.  All have their original engine or an engine built by the same company during the same time period.

Doors open at 6:00, and at 7:00 p.m., Peele will present “Michigan Boat Building” which will highlight Michigan’s role as the epicenter of boat building in our country with companies such as Century in Manistee, Chris Craft and Ventnor. 

Ned Edwards will give a brief presentation with photos of the Classic Boats of Crystal Lake, of which there are now about 25, from a 1930 Chris Craft Runabout to a 2015 Grand Craft Utility.  These mahogany wood boats were all built in Michigan and many have been restored by highly skilled craftsmen, including Mike Green of Traverse City, who is the great grandson of Chris Smith, founder of Chris Craft.  Most of the owners of these boats are members of the Water Wonderland Chapter of the Antique and Classic Boat Society, International, of which Ned is a board member and secretary. 

The event will be held at Peele’s boat barn located adjacent to The Granary on Crystal Avenue in Beulah (behind the Depot). For more information, contact the Benzie Area Historical Society at (231) 882.-5539.

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Benzonia Academy Lecture: The 100 Year History of Crystal Downs
Jul
11
7:00 PM19:00

Benzonia Academy Lecture: The 100 Year History of Crystal Downs

Lecturer: Dave Rosenberger

Location: Mills Community House

Dave Rosenberger is a tax attorney residing and working in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.  He played his first round of golf at age 13 and instantly was enamored with the game.  At that same early age, he met his future bride, Mary Ann Ross. 

Dave and Mary Ann married in 1972, and via a wedding gift from long-time friends of Dave’s parents, the couple honeymooned in a cottage on Crystal Lake and were treated to a round of golf and dinner at Crystal Downs Country Club.  After playing only the first two holes of the course, Dave recalls remarking to his wife that “this is the greatest golf course I’ve ever played.”

After that first encounter with Crystal Downs, Dave made annual return visits to the course during the two weeks each August that he and Mary Ann vacationed with her parents, Ivan and Betty, at the Hoot Owl Inn on Silver Lake in Traverse City.  On the return drive to TC, Dave remembers celebrating each round of golf with a piece of cherry pie ala mode at the Cherry Hut in Beulah.  History and traditions were being made.

In 1988, after a disappointing September vacation in Harbor Springs where Dave found it difficult to get a tee time at any of the many courses there, he contacted two of his law partners who were members at Crystal Downs.  Dave inquired of them whether there were any homes for sale on or near the course.  Both partners advised Dave that there were some “curious little cottages” behind the clubhouse that had been renovated recently and were available for purchase.  Two trips to Frankfort in November 1988 convinced Dave and Mary Ann that they were ready to commit to Crystal Downs, and in early 1989 they became homeowners and members.

Having settled on Frankfort as a summer residence, Dave decided to learn more about the city’s origins, the logging era, the car ferries, and in particular, how such an outstanding golf course and unique summer residential community at Crystal Downs had come into existence in the somewhat remote northwest Michigan area.  A friend, fellow lawyer and golfing partner gave Dave some old Frankfort postcards, which started Dave on a quest for every local postcard he could find.  That collection branched into a search for historical maps, newspaper articles, promotional brochures and anything else that could shed light on Crystal Downs and the surrounding community.

In his presentation for the Benzie County Historical Society on July 11, Dave will recount where and how he looked for historical information and will share many of the photographs and other items he has recovered over the years.  The talk will focus on the story of how renowned golf course architect, Alister MacKenzie, who also designed Augusta National and Cypress Point in the U.S., Royal Melbourne in Australia, the Jockey Club in Argentina, Titirangi in New Zealand, Lahinch and Cork in Ireland and other renowned courses worldwide, happened to visit such an out-of-the-way place as Frankfort, and who were the individuals who conceived  and implemented the Crystal Downs community.  Dave also will cover the connections between Crystal Downs, Frankfort, the Congregational Summer Assembly, Crystal Lake and Lake Michigan, and recount stories about local residents who have been integral to the club’s operations and preservation of its traditions.

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Benzonia Academy Lecture: Women Warriors
Jun
13
7:00 PM19:00

Benzonia Academy Lecture: Women Warriors

Lecturer: Pamela Toler

Location: Mills Community House

Author Pamela Toler will present Women Warriors on Thursday, June 13, 7:00 p.m. at the Mills Community House as part of the Benzie Area Historical Society’s Benzonia Academy Lecture series. 

From Vikings and African queens to cross-dressing military doctors and WWII Russian fighter pilots, Women Warriors author Pamela Toler reclaims lost stories of women for whom battle was not a metaphor, debunking the pervasive claim that women do not, and should not, fight.

For the most part, women warriors have been pushed into the historical shadows, hidden in the footnotes, or half-erased. But in fact, women have always gone to war—or fought back when war came to them.  

In Women Warriors, historian Pamela Toler examines the stories of historical women for whom battle was not a metaphor: using both well-known and obscure examples, drawn from the ancient world through the twentieth century and from Asia and Africa as well as from the West.  Looking at specific examples of historical women warriors, she considers why they went to war, how those reasons related to their roles as mothers, daughters, wives, or widows, peacemakers, poets or queens—and what happened when women stepped outside their accepted roles to take on other identities.

Armed with a PhD in history, a well-thumbed deck of library cards, and a large bump of curiosity, author, speaker, and historian, Pamela D. Toler translates history for a popular audience. She goes beyond the familiar boundaries of American history to tell stories from other parts of the world as well as history from the other side of the battlefield, the gender line, or the color bar. Toler is the author of eight books of popular history for children and adults, including Women Warriors:  An Unexpected History.  Her work has appeared in Aramco World, Calliope, History Channel Magazine, MHQ: The Quarterly Journal of Military History and Time.com.

For more information, contact the Benzie Area Historical Society at 231.882.5539.  The suggested donation is $5.

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Manistee and Northeastern Old Railroad Grade and Depot Tour
Apr
27
9:00 AM09:00

Manistee and Northeastern Old Railroad Grade and Depot Tour

This is a  return of our popular motor coach tours of local railroad history.  In the spring of 1887, the Buckley and Douglas Lumber Company of Manistee began building a railroad to transport logs from the forest to its sawmill in Manistee.  They named the railroad the Manistee and Northeastern.  Our tour route starts at the Museum, follows the M & NE railroad grade route to Benzonia, Honor, Lake Ann, Interlochen, Karlin,  Nessen City, Platte River Junction, Copemish,  Thompsonville, and  Kaleva. A highlight will be a tour of the historic Kaleva Depot Museum, which was rebuilt in 1908.   A commemorative book, the Museum tour and lunch are included. 

This tour is a collaboration  between the Benzie Area Historical Society and the Kaleva Historical Society. 

$75 before April 15, $80 at the door.  Reservations are required - to make reservations,  either contact the Museum at 231-882-5539 or use the Buy Now button below to buy tickets using a credit card or a PayPal account.  No paper tickets will be issued, the PayPal receipt is your ticket.  Please bring a copy of your receipt the day of the tour. 

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Dec
1
to Dec 31

Coat Drive

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Nov
5
12:00 PM12:00

Turnip Harvest

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Feb
18
7:00 PM19:00

Professor Eugene Thompson: Winter Sustenance Throughout History

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