Historical Albion Michigan
By Frank Passic

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VICTORY PARK 100 YEARS OLD

Morning Star, July 21, 2019, pg. 10

It will be one hundred years ago this coming October that the City of Albion purchased 40 acres of land in honor and memory of our soldiers and sailors who served in World War I. That land was subsequently developed and named Victory Park. A "Victory Park Committee" was established in 1919 to secure the purchase of private properties in the area that would make up the park. Those included properties owned by Dr. Samuel Dickie, Harry Harton, Mrs. Nora Cogswell, and the Maple City Creamery next to the waterfall. The committee of Albion businessmen leading the project consisted of Dr. E. L. Parmeter, chairman; George E. Dean, Walter S. Kennedy, George T. Bullen, Homer C. Blair, Afton A. Dibble, and Richard T. Baldwin.

The official fund-raising campaign occurred in October of 1919, although by the time the campaign started, $2,500 had already been secured. Factories, clubs, organizations, individuals, and even school children gave to the cause. The park was designed to be for recreational purposes, "as beautiful as our city, and a place that will bring a direct benefit to many hundreds and thousands, now and through the years to come," stated the Recorder on October 6. The fund-raising campaign was a huge success. In just one monthís time, over $20,000 was raised for the purchase and development of the park. The names of the donors and the amounts they gave were published in the newspaper.

From our Historical Notebook this week we present the headlines from the Albion Evening Recorder of October 10, 1919, touting the support for the fund-raising project from Albion Public Schools superintendent Donald Harrington.

Today, Victory Park is still Albionís major recreational and family attraction. It is one of Albionís great assets, thanks to the vision of our citizens one hundred years ago. Many Albion service clubs and organizations have contributed to erected various structures and playground equipment through the years, and continue to do so. How many of our readers have been to Victory Park lately? I encourage you to attend the weekly "Swinginíat the Shell" concerts on Sunday evenings (6 pm) the remainder of this summer to experience just one of the many activities available to our citizens at our great Victory Park, now one hundred years old.


Victory Park 1919

Next: Albion 100 Years Ago - AUGUST 1919

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