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.

RIVERSIDE CEMETERY

Morning Star, October 30, 1994, pg. 4

This time of year we can appreciate the beautiful fall colors which are seen on the many varieties of trees in our community. One particular place which is filled with colorful beauty this time of year is in Riverside Cemetery. Take time to stroll down its paths this fall season and enjoy the scenery. A few weeks ago, we gave a tour of the southern portion of the cemetery, and had a nice turnout. If you would like to take the tour yourself, we have the tour booklets available at the Albion Chamber of Commerce. The booklet features 50 selected interments. Also available is last yearís tour booklet, which focuses on the oldest portion of Riverside Cemetery, and Albionís pioneers.

Riverside Cemetery is easy to get to, as you know. you just cross the South Superior St. bridge, turn left, and you are there. For many years in the 19th century however, access to the cemetery was more difficult. Up through the 1850s, Superior Street ended at Irwin Avenue, then known as Homer Road.

Residents had to cross the Concord Road (now Haven Street) bridge in order to get to the south side of the Kalamazoo River. Then they followed the road westwards towards the cemetery, present-day Haven Lane, a private road and development today. The Haven Lane road then met what is today M-99 and continued southwards as it does today.

The Superior Street bridge apparently was not built until the late 1850s. It provided a direct access to Albion, and the Cemetery from the south, instead of having to detour around as had been done previously. The Haven Lane road continued to be used, but it was eventually abandoned and today is a private dead end drive, although it is quite apparent by the landscape that the road once went all the way between Haven Road and South Superior St./M-99.

From our Historical Notebook this week we present a photograph taken in the 1920s of the so-called Cemetery Bridge, taken from Crandall St. looking towards Riverside Cemetery. Notice the old style construction, and the fill dirt extending the road to the bridge. Albionís bridges were replaced in 1908 following their destruction in the great flood of that year. The bridge pictured here was replaced in 1938 to handle the M-99 traffic, which formerly ran via Irwin Avenue, and was known as M-9.


Cemetery Bridge, circa 1920

Next: DR. LAWRENCE J. HEIDENREICH


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