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.

1940 BRICK STREET DEDICATION

Morning Star, December 3, 2017, pg. 4

If you wish to meet Albion's latest author, Dr. James L. Curtis, now is your chance. The book signing and sales of his new book "Memoirs of a Black Psychiatrist"(see the November 12 edition of this column) will be held this week. The date is Tuesday, December 5 at 7 pm. at Stirling Books & Brew at 119 N. Superior St. You'll be glad you came to this special community event.

When Albion's 1940 brick street project was completed, there was a big celebration in downtown Albion. A gala celebration and ribbon-cutting ceremony was held on Thursday October 17, 1940, officially opening Albion's brick Superior Street. Several thousand persons lined Superior St. to view a spectacular mile-long parade which featured three bands, an Army detachment from Fort Custer, marching school children, and scores of decorated automobiles.

The Albion Evening Recorder reported, "With curb flags in front of nearly every business place, the business section was a mass of patriotic color."The parade was the largest held in Albion since the massive centennial parade of 1935. In conjunction with the event there were sporting events, talent shows, entertainment groups, and exhibits throughout the downtown section. An estimated 12,500 free hot dogs and thousands of free cups of coffee were given away at a booth operated by Harold F. Wochholz, refreshment chairman. With the parade came the politicians in the midst of their final weeks of campaigning before the November elections only a few weeks away.

The ribbon-cutting ceremony was held at the intersection of Superior and Erie streets. It included State Highway commissioner and gubernatorial candidate Murry D. VanWagoner, Albion Mayor Norman H. Wiener, over fifty State Highway department, WPA, other officials, and local residents. Following the ceremony, a dedicatory dinner was held at the Parker Inn Hotel. Lavish praise was given to Mayor Wiener for his decade-long efforts to secure a new brick street for Albion.

From our Historical Notebook this week we present a photograph of the ribbon-cutting ceremony. Left to right are: Albion Mayor Norman H. Wiener, Patricia VanWagoner, an Albion College student; and her uncle, State Highway Commissioner Murray D. VanWagoner. Note: Behind and to the left of the mayor, the man holding the baby is Harold S. Shaffer, and the baby is Harold J. Shaffer. The brick pavement was funded by the Works Progress Administration at a cost of $55,500.

What type of gala ceremony will be held next summer to celebrate the conclusion of Albion's extensive 2017-2018 brick street project? I wonder.


Superior Street Brick Dedication October 17, 1940

Next: A METAL DETECTING DIG OF SUPERIOR STREET

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