At the Commission meeting of March 1, 2018 our lease of the main building of City Hall was approved. We will be signing the lease on Monday, March 5 and we will begin initial demolition of the 1960's - 70's paneling and added walls soon after. We intend to carefully remove non-original material to get back to the original brick. We have some reason to think there may be brick arches on the north side of the main floor room. We intend to photograph and video tape this process as a way of documenting this history making restoration of City Hall.
2018 Calendar of Meetings, Events and 2019 Blue Denim Date
East China Community Big Band provided great swing tunes.
Georgia Phelan was our EmCee for the evening.
Friends President Becky Lepley spoke movingly about City Hall.
Heather Bokram was honored for her years of work devoted to saving and preserving City Hall.
HERITAGE DAYS 2017
See the Heritage Days page for more pictures and commentary
The East China Community Band opened Heritage Days Friday evening for our traditional evening concert.
The Michigan 15th Civil War re-enactors set up their encampment in Heritage Square.
Marge Guinther maintained the Information Desk.
Amy Bouren kept the popcorn machine in overdrive making free popcorn for our visitors.
A bicycle built for one very coordinated person.
Mass transit of a more deliberate variety.
Alicia, Margaret and Louise made all the delicious cookies they sold.
We didn't get their names but we admired their determination.
Keynote speaker Attorney Robert Davis spoke about the meaning of the word heritage and our responsibilities for keeping it.
Chief of PPolice MCPD James Heaslip presents a Ciommendation and the Police Department Purple Heart to Officer Robert J. Fults (Ret.) who was shot while on duty.
Historic District and National Register Signs
The Historic District sign was erected August 23, 2017 and has garnered quite a bit of attention.
Friends of City Hall is pleased to be able to share some of the history and achievements of Marine City. We welcome your contributions to assist us with this expense.
Although City Hall has been on the National Register of Historic Places since 1982 vedry few people knew about it. Friends of City Hall hope this investment will do a good job speaking for the building and telling of its place in history.
NEWS: Memorial Paver project now completed - see Paver page
History Preserved in Bronze
In 1981 a representative of the Michigan State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) came to Marine City to analyze City Hall and do research on its history. An application was then written and submitted to the United States Secretary of the Interior requesting City Hall be added to the National Register of Historic Places. That application was granted and City Hall was placed on the Register in 1982. A copy of that application and the acceptance letter are on file with city government. A few people who know some of the history of City Hall are aware of its placement on the Register and Friends of City Hall makes a point to mention this honor wherever possible. But, there has never been an effort to memorialize this special status with any kind of sign or plaque. The general public and casual visitors to City Hall do not learn of this.
In 2008 Heritage Square and City Hall became the first Historic District in Marine City. However, no effort was made to erect an Historic District sign. Historic Districts are a matter of community pride in the history and culture of its past. Having an Historic District identifies a community as aware of its heritage and mindful of preserving it. Of course Friends of City Hall makes constant mention of the Historic District but a formal, permanent sign is truly what is required. Neither the federal government or state government pay for Registry plaques or Historic District signs.
To correct these oversights Friends of City Hall has started a fund raising campaign to purchase and install a bronze plaque on City Hall which will tell of its listing on the National Registry of Historic Places. In addition, a traditional Historic District sign will be purchased and installed to face the street. Bronze was chosen for its durability and lasting beauty. Both the plaque and the free standing sign will be illuminated at night.
If you agree that City Hall and Marine City needs and deserves this recognition please make a donation to Friends of City Hall to help fund this signage. Friends is a 501 (c) 3 corporation and all donations are tax deductible. Your gift of $10, $20 or more will be a big help in completing this project.
Please send your donation to: Friends of City Hall P.O. Box 283 Marine City, MI 48039
Please write 'Plaque' on the memo line of your check.
Save your check and stamp and donate by PayPal below.
THANK YOU SO MUCH! We have been very touched by the community response to our project. Especially moving are the notes that people often include with their checks. It is clear that City Hall holds a very special place in the hearts and memories of people of Marine City and this region. Thank you for your generous gifts and your memories. It is much appreciated. Mr. and Mrs. Wm. Cullen Anchor Inn Motel Gloria Biermann Mr. and Mrs. Jim Cottrell Miriam Guyor Frances Welser Mr. and Mrs. Billock Claire DeCoster Mr. and Mrs. Tom Wegmeyer Mr. and Mrs. Bob Hill Mr. and Mrs. George Roegner H. Carole Beauchamp Janice Wiltshire Amy F. Bouren Mr. and Mrs. Steve Hoerr Mr. and Mrs. Gary Beals Mr. and Mrs. Robert Lepley Donald Kuchers Fine Arts Models
Judith White Marine City Gunsmith, Jesse White Christine Kady Georgia Phelan Nancy Molnar Marketing of America Marge Guinther Donna Tebeau
Community Pride and Heritage Museum Stephen Saph Mr. and Mrs. Ty Jobin Patrick and Amy Sullivan Michigan N otary Association Real Estate One North Bay Building Company Margaret and William Danneels
2017 Schedule of Meetings and Special Events
All meetings are held at Great Lakes Art and Antiques 123 N. Belle River Rd. immediately south of The Antique Warehouse
January 26 7:00 P.M. Annual Meeting February 23 7:00 P.M. Regular Meeting March 23 7:00 P.M. Regular Meeting April 27 7:00 P.M. Regular Meeting May 25 7:00 P.M. Regular Meeting June 22 7:00 P.M. Regular Meeting July Preparation and Mailing of 2018 Membershipp Drive details TBA July 27 7:00 P.M. Regular Meeting August 24 7:00 P.M. Regular Meeting September 9 10:00 A.M. Preparation Day at 300 Broadway for Heritage Days September 15 10:00 A.M Final set up at 300 Broadway for Heritage Days September 15 7:00 P.M. Heritage Days Opens with East China Community Band Concert September 16 10 ~ 6:00 P.M. Heritage Days September 17 10 ~ 6:00 P.M. Heritage Days September 28 7:00 P.M. Debriefing Meeting October 26 7:00 P.M. Regular Meeting October 28 3 ~ 6:00 P.M. Ghost Tours with the MCPD November Meeting will be held only if necessary December 7 7:00 P.M. Christmas meeting Please bring snacks and treats to share January 2018 7:00 P.M. Annual Meeting
To see more photos of the restoration process see the Restoration page.
South facade of City Hall with damaged bricks removed.
The Doyenne Begins to Reveal Her Secrets
Bit by bit, as the sealant is removed and the damaged brick taken away, the grand old gal is beginning to tell us fascinating snippets of her life story. The most surprising so far is what we are learning about the brick laying technology employed in her construction. Removing the outer layer of brick revealed no air gap/weeping space between the inner core of bricks and the skin. Instead, a very unique bonding method was employed. Where ever you see a row of darker, more reddish brick, it is the site of a clever technique for uniting the core to the skin, i.e. a bonding of two wythes (widths). Those darker red bricks are shaped to have a point jutting out the back. Bricks of the same course in the inner wythe are set in on a diagonal to form a v shape recieving gap. You can see a partial row of this "dog tooth" technique to the right of center in the photo. Just above you can see the end of a newly revealed iron restraining rod. This one was not decorated with an escutcheon (decorative face plate). To see more pictures of the restoration go the the Restoration page.
Friends of City Hall is a 501 (c) 3 corporation.
Friends of City Hall is an organization dedicated to preserving City Hall. "Friends" is a non-profit organization and has been granted 501 c 3 status. Anyone interested in architecture, its preservation and restoration, the history of Marine City or simply someone who loves this old building is encouraged to join.