Historical Albion Michigan
By Frank Passic

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Any photos not otherwise credited are from the personal collection of Frank Passic, Albion Historian.


Morning Star, June 24, 2012, pg. 14

Again here is a friendly reminder for you to have copies of my books "Growing Up in Albion," and "Albion in Review" at your Albion High School reunion this summer. Give me a call at (517) 629-5402.

This is a continuation of my previous articles about Dutchtown which appeared in the June 11, 2006, and August 16, 1998 editions of this column.

The official swimming place for Albion youth through the summer of 1957 was Dutchtown, located in the Kalamazoo River along S. Hannah St. There are still remains of this swimming hole at the site today. At this point a small dam diverted some of the water to the White Mill on E. Cass St. Hundreds of Albion children would swim here. This was an "all natural" site: no chlorine here! Swimmers received the full benefits of the Kalamazoo River, much like they do today in the Rieger Park swimming pond.

The director at Dutchtown during the 1950s was Walter McCormick. The Albion Recreation Department would stage an annual Water Ballet here at Dutchtown. The theme for the 1953 water ballet was "The Good Ship Lollypop." Do any of our readers remember this? From our Historical Notebook this week we present a photograph of the participants taken on July 22, 1953. The boys in the middle are holding the sign "END" signaling the end of the performance.

Front row, left to right: William Hawk, Vicky Fletcher, Lucky Hart, Bill Sharrar, Michael Broas, Dan Rahfeldt, Ted Henderson, (back) Larry Domingo, (front) Chipper Hart, (back, hidden) Gordon Martin, (back) Gary Hanks, (with hat on) Karen Willey. Center row of boys: John Norton, Sonny Stockton, Don Buckler. Back row: Marietta Andrews, Gloria Sharrar, Judy Schultz, Deanne Knoblauch, Shirley Andrews.

How many of our readers remember the annual ballets at Dutchtown?

July 22, 1953 Dutchtown Water Ballet (end scene)

Dutchtown, Part 1, Dutchtown, Part 2, Dutchtown, Part 4


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