Welcome to Plymouth MI Discoveries!

4 Jul
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Jim, Andrea, Ava, Alicia, & Aaron

This page is committed to sharing the history and facts of historical structures and homes in Plymouth, Michigan. This page is dedicated to the past and present residents of Plymouth. As a Plymouth resident, my family is Proud of the richness of history, the great schools, and the great people of this wonderful community. After a visit to the Plymouth Historical Museum, we became very interested in the homes and structures around town and the history behind them. In the spring of 2012 we started a facebook page documenting our discoveries. In partnership with the Plymouth Historical Museum, we evolved to the creation of this page. Our goal is to raise awareness of the rich history of Plymouth and to showcase to the world the great community we live in. Our posts only scratch the surface of the extensive stories behind each structure and we can only hope it will encourage the community to learn more and appreciate Plymouth history. We also hope that our page helps encourage the preservation of structures that hold much of the great history of Plymouth. We invite the public abroad to pay a visit to our wonderful community and to stop by the Plymouth Historical Museum located at 155 S. Main Street, Plymouth, MI 48170 Phone Number: (734) 455-8940.

To contact the author of this page, simply enter your info below:

Author of Plymouth Discoveries

1477 W. Ann Arbor Trail

30 Jul

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1477 W. Ann Arbor Trail was built in 1938 by Cass & Margaret Hough. Their first home was actually the first home built in the Hough Park neighborhood (located at 1395 Park Place). When this Georgian Colonial was built, it was constructed to the satisfaction of wife Margaret who loved many homes in New England and this home shares many attributes of some of her favorite houses. At the time of construction, Cass was the President of the Daisy Air Rifle factory and was a third generation Hough family member to serve as an executive for the company. An interesting note about the stone wall that sits at the perimeter of the property is the fact that Cass built the wall in 1920 well before the home was built.

In 1941 the Detroit News (newspaper) featured this home in an article touting its elegance and beauty. In 1955 Cass and Margaret had split up. Margaret continued to live here for another ten years. In 1965 a couple happen to be driving through town and came to a stop and got out of their vehicle to admire this home. A woman by the name of Janet Warrick insisted to her husband Chip that they get out and speak to the owner. The couple met with Margaret and stated that if she would consider selling her home to please contact them. Margaret contacted them not long after their meeting and agreed to sell her home to the eager couple. In 1965 this 3700 SQFT, 5 Bedroom, 4.5 bath home was sold to the Warricks. They loved everything about this home so much that it was virtually left “untouched” until 2010 when the home was sold to new owners.

Cass Hough not only served as the President of Daisy but was also a war hero that served as a pilot during WWII and is featured in the Aviation Hall of Fame. Cass passed away at his Florida home in 1990 and was laid to rest here in Plymouth at the Riverside Cemetery.

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Cass Hough 1949 presenting awards

 

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“It’s a Daisy!” is the most complete published book about the history of Daisy written by Cass Hough in 1976.

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1477 W. Ann Arbor Trail in the winter.

1411 W. Ann Arbor Trail

29 Jul

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1411 W. Ann Arbor Trail was built in 1918 by Edward C. Hough. This was the home of Ed & Louise (Sheffield) Hough from 1918-1959. They had given their estate the name of “The Elms”. Edward Hough was the son of Lewis C. Hough who was an original founder of the Plymouth Iron Windmill Company which eventually became the Daisy Air Rifle Company. Ed joined the business in 1893 as the Treasurer for the company.  In later years, Ed’s Son Cass Hough would go on to become the President of Daisy. Both Edward & Louise Hough have been laid to rest at the Riverside Cemetery.  The Hough family played a significant role in the history of Plymouth and their legacy will continue to live on for many years to come.

This home still retains all of its original elements including the original carriage port on the West side of the home and the 2-story carriage house located behind the home. This home still has an unpaved driveway which makes it easy to look at the home and picture yourself stepping back into time and looking at the grandeur of this home as if it were still the early 1900s.

Below is a photo of the executive team that operated the Daisy Air Rifle Company in 1895. The Team included Lewis C. Hough, Edward Hough, Charles H. Bennett, George W. Hunter, and Alfred W. Chaffee

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View of Ann Arbor Trail in 1930. The Hough home sits on the right of the photo:

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796 N. Mill Street

29 Jul

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796 N. Mill Street is one of the oldest homes in this part of Plymouth. Built on a field stone foundation it was recorded that this home was built in 1866 but upon further inspection, this structure has materials and structural signs that date it back circa 1837. There are also records that show that this home was standing prior to the Civil War.

In 1886 this was the home of Conrad Springer who was a German Immigrant born in 1834. Springer had served as a volunteer soldier in the 24th Regiment, Company K for the Union Army during the Civil War. Conrad passed away in 1916 and was laid to rest in Plymouth’s Riverside Cemetery.

Through the years ownership of this home changed a number of times but today this place now serves as the home of the Red Twig Art Gallery. The owners of this home have not only cared for this historical home but they also have done a great job of preserving the historic home of William Starkweather just down the street.

1090 N Holbrook

22 Jul

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1090 N Holbrook Street, built circa 1850 on a stone foundation. This was once part of the Henry Holbrook estate which once was home to one of Plymouth’s earliest mills. The Greek Revival home next door (1142 Holbrook) was the main house on the property and this home was built to house other family members. It’s been said that this was once the home of one of Henry’s 3 daughters. In 1850 it was recorded that Henry’s estate was worth $16,500 which by today’s standard would be just over a half-million dollars. This home was remodeled in 1922 to the current appearance that you see today. After nearly 170 years, it’s awesome to see this home is still standing strong. The current owners are proud of it’s rich Plymouth history and have done a great job keeping this home preserved.

Note: If you look closely to the left of the photo, you can see the yellow exterior walls of the well-known “Holbrook House”.

9275 McClumpha Rd

28 Apr

9275 MClumpha Rd was built circa 1869. This was once the home of Elizabeth McClumpha, the daughter of Thomas McClumpha who once owned and farmed much of the land along McClumpha Rd South of Ann Arbor Rd. Elizabeth was the eldest of her siblings, was well-known in the community and was remembered for her extreme kindness and love of children although she was unmarried and had no children of her own. She passed away in 1899 and is buried in the Riverside Cemetery.

Most recently this home has become known for being the childhood home of the leading Star of an Oscar-Winning movie, Amadeus. Thomas Edward Hulce was born in Detroit, and grew up here in Plymouth, where he was raised with his two sisters and older brother. He is the son of Joanne (Winkleman), who had sung professionally, and Raymond Albert Hulce, who worked for Ford. He has English, German, and Irish ancestry. Wanting to be a singer, Tom had to make a switch in plans when his voice began changing. Knowing that if he wanted to be in show business he needed to become an actor, Tom began taking the necessary steps almost immediately. Today Tom is known for being an Oscar-nominated multi award winning Actor, Producer and entertainer with a number of accolades. Simply “google” Tom Hulce and you can read his entire filmography, awards and more.

Here in Plymouth we are also proud of Tom’s mother, Joanne (Winkleman) Hulce, known as Jo Hulce. Jo was a member of the Winkleman family that was known for their department stores that started in 1928. In her twenties Jo who was a singer, became a featured soloist, “The Golden Voice of Joanne” on the nationally syndicated and popular radio show “The Hour of Charm”. The show was broadcast from New York every Sunday and toured the United States.

Jo and her husband Ray purchased this home in 1953. While raising her four children, she sang as a soloist with the Presbyterian Church choir and the Plymouth Symphony, and joined the League Board. The home of the Plymouth Community Arts Council at 774 N Sheldon is named in her honor… The Joanne Winkleman Hulce Center for the Arts.

Today the current owners of this home take great pride in the history of this house and also shared the fact that the addition on the back side of this home was built with some repurposed wood from the old Daisy Air Rifle factory. Many of us in the community are pleased to see how this historic home adds to the charm of Plymouth.

Tom Hulce as Amadeus in the Oscar-Winning movie “Amadeus”

 

9275 McClumpha Rd in 1977

 

 

44525 Gov. Bradford Rd

19 Mar

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44525 Gov. Bradford Rd. Built in 1956 was the home of Former Michigan Governor John Swainson (D).  This home was originally designed to easily accommodate a wheel chair. Read more and learn why…

John Burley Swainson was born in Windsor, Ontario Canada in 1925 and came to Michigan with his family when he was two years old. He fought with the 95th Infantry Division of the United States Army during World War II, losing both his legs to a land mine explosion in France in 1944. He was awarded France’s Croix de Guerre, the Presidential Unit Citation with two battle stars, and the Purple Heart, all before his twentieth birthday. After earning his law degree in 1951, Swainson was elected as a Democrat to the state senate and served there from 1954 to 1958, as Lieutenant Governor from 1958 and 1961, and as Governor from 1961 to 1963 after his election in 1960. As Governor, Swainson appointed the first African American to sit on the Michigan Supreme Court. He was defeated in the 1962 election by Republican candidate George Romney (father of future Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney).

He later served as a Wayne County circuit judge, was elected to the state Supreme Court in 1970 and came to be seen as a prospective candidate for the United States Senate. Unfortunately his political career ended in 1975 after he was convicted, in Federal District Court in Detroit, of lying to a Federal grand jury in connection with accusations that he had accepted a bribe in 1972 to help a convicted burglar gain a review of his case. He was acquitted of conspiracy and served 60 days in a halfway house in Detroit. Some say that he was framed.

Swainson later became the president of the Michigan Historical Commission, a title which he held until his death of a heart attack in 1994. John passed away at his Manchester, MI home. Two years later, the Commission established the Governor John B. Swainson Award to recognize “State, County, or Municipal employees who have contributed to the preservation of Michigan history even though such activities are not part of their primary job responsibility.”

In 2010 Author Lawrence Glazer wrote an award-winning book about Swainson titled: “Wounded Warrior: The Rise and Fall of Michigan Governor John Swainson”.

You can also find a display commemorating Swainson’s Army service at the Michigan Military & Space Heroes Museum in Frankenmuth, MI

Below see a photo of John Swainson, photo of Swainson with Martin Luther King Jr in June 1963 on the day that MLK first gave his “I have a dream” speech in Detroit. Photo of Swainson with John F. Kennedy. Last image is the book cover of the book written about John Swainson.

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Gov. John Swainson (D)

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689 N. Mill Street

4 Mar

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689 N. Mill Street at the South West corner of Mill & Liberty was built by Carl Heide in 1911. Carl Heide was born in 1868 and immigrated from Germany in 1883. Carl quickly became a significant thread of Plymouth’s History as a Floral entrepreneur.  Carl became personal friends with the well-known and prominent George Starkweather. The South East corner of Liberty and N Mill have been most known for being Heide’s Greenhouses but they were originally built and owned by George Starkweather  and were leased by Carl Heide. Having a successful floral business, Mr. Heide decided to build his home directly across the street from the greenhouses which he later purchased from Starkweather. At one time Heide’s Flowers was known for being Plymouth’s oldest continuously running business.  Carl Heide passed away in 1941 and was laid to rest in Plymouth’s Riverside Cemetery. In 1944 this home, the Greenhouses and Floral business were purchased by Reinhold Ruehr who continued running Heide’s Flowers.

Below is a photo of the Heide (Starkweather) Greenhouse built circa 1889. This Greenhouse was located across the street from where the house stands today. Carl Heide and George Starkweather are featured in the photo. Photo courtesy of Dan Sabo:

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