June 18, 2024

Beauty Arts

The Arts Authority

The current Midland County Courthouse has stood for 97 years

The current Midland County Courthouse has stood for 97 years

In the lobby of the Midland County Courthouse hangs a collection of five paintings performed by Detroit artist Biron Roger. The evolution of Midland County background is recorded in these paintings. 

Portray range just one demonstrates a Native American carrying a deer throughout his shoulders as he walks into the Chippewa village exactly where he life. Portray quantity two depicts two pioneers, a white gentleman and girl, standing by the cradle where their little one is sleeping.

Photograph 3 displays a lumberjack slicing down a white pine through the lumber boom that Midland County liked for 50 yrs. Anderson Arbury, a son-in-legislation of Dr. Herbert Henry Dow, was the model for the lumberjack. 

Portray number 4 reveals a female sowing seeds in a discipline. And portray number 5 exhibits Dr. Dow towering in excess of the metropolis of Midland. The artist named it “The Sower.”

Painting number 6 was to be “The Return of the Troopers.” But two circumstances intervened: the health of Biron Roger and a price range shortfall.

As an alternative of a portray in the body for range six are the words and phrases: “The artist has depicted the previous. Your deeds will determine the foreseeable future.” That was in 1927. 

Currently, Midland can be proud of the point that its seat of federal government has been in the exact location for 165 yrs. The Midland County Courthouse is on the exact house that Henry Ashmun selected in the 1850s. 

Humble beginnings marked our to start with courthouse. Ashmun rode on horseback from the Village of Midland Metropolis to Lansing, Michigan, to appear right before the state legislature. A shrewd politician, he was trying to get authorization from the legislature to make a courthouse in our town, which had been specified as the county seat. At the time, there ended up 15 households in the Village of Midland City. 

Ashmun persuaded the legislature to allow the prosecuting lawyer and the board of supervisors pick the web site for the new courthouse. Evidently, no just one in the legislature checked who the Midland County prosecuting legal professional was and who was on the county board of supervisors. If they experienced, they would have identified out that Henry Ashmun crammed both positions.  (At the time, only 1 gentleman was on the board of supervisors: Henry Ashmun.)

Making use of his ability judiciously, Ashmun correctly selected a piece of property that he owned on the corner of Gordon and Key. (I have also read that Dr. Daniel Fitzhugh donated the home.) On Oct 13, 1856, a stake was pushed to mark the place the new courthouse would be developed.

For the occasion, Dan Davis and Timothy Jerome from Saginaw came to the Village of Midland City by boat. They met Midlanders Billy Vance, Joseph Townsend Sr., Charles Fitzhugh, E. G. Buttles and H. M. Ellsworth. Timothy Jerome brought a bottle of champagne for the event. 

The new courthouse was made by Jerome. Creating began in 1857, and in 1858 the courthouse was occupied. Developed on a small knoll, the courthouse appeared much like a Greek temple. It was developed at a charge of 6,000 pounds.

On March 6. 1872, I. F. Smith of Lincoln Township wrote a resolution proposing that the county seat be moved from Midland to Averill Station in Jerome Township, which was named in honor of Timothy Jerome. Politically, this brought on difficulty mainly because a Mr. Egbert had been the 1st settler in the space and expected to have the township be named Egbert Township.

Eventually, Jerome Township and Lincoln Township settled their variances, with Sanford ending up in Jerome Township and Averill ending up in Lincoln Township. The paper suggesting that the county seat be moved from Midland to Averill Station was quietly submitted away and was never read from once more.

As early as 1919, a extra imposing courthouse for Midland County was under dialogue. The Greco-Roman fashion was no for a longer time in style. It was Dr. Herbert Henry Dow who tipped the scales for a new courthouse. A sum of $220,000 was designated for the building, but only $180,000 was elevated. 

Dr. Dow stepped in with a proposition. He would pay back for whichever the charges would be if he were being allowed to have total decision generating in the use of Dow supplies for the new courthouse.  He was supplied authorization to use Dow goods and make all conclusions. Currently, the courthouse is incorporated in the State Sign-up of Historic Web pages and the Nationwide Sign up of Historic Areas.

Dow contacted Bloodgood Tuttle of Detroit to style and design the new courthouse. Dow was by now common with the architect’s do the job because Tuttle had designed the home wherever Willard Dow (Dow’s oldest son) and his wife Martha Pratt lived on West Park Push. The new courthouse would be designed in the Tudor Revival type.

Section of the exterior of the new courthouse would be magnesite stucco, a creating substance developed by The Dow Chemical Business in 1925. Don Gibb of Dow labored with artist Paul Honore to develop the plastic mosaic content. 

Floor glass was utilized rather of sand and silex in the magnesite stucco to give the murals their uncommon shade and sparkle. Honore made use of a palette knife to make the murals exterior on the courthouse. Panels in the entrance and rear were manufactured into photos telling the record of Midland County with Indigenous People, traders and lumberjacks.  All figures had been a few-dimensional and daily life-sized. 

On November 3, 1924, Dr. Dow made use of a shovel built by John Hoy out of Dowmetal to lift the initially spadeful of filth at the setting up web-site. On March 29, 1925, Dr. Dow utilized a trowel created from Dowmetal to lay the cornerstone.

On New Year’s Day 1926, the new courthouse was occupied by staff members of Midland County.

Meanwhile, the first Greco-Roman courthouse was torn down by Hiram Crane in 1929, and he crafted a few houses with the salvaged lumber.

By 1958, more home was required in the 1926 courthouse. and Alden Dow built an addition that would contain dwelling quarters for Sheriff Ira Smith and his spouse, jail cells for 52 inmates and workplace room.

A constructing committee was shaped for the enlargement, including Leonard Coryea, T.C. Maher, Robert Kapanka, Clair Shearer, Joel H. Kahn, Charles Keyworth and Claud Anthony.  Collinson Building Company was supplied the bid.  Local fieldstone was utilised so it would seem the identical as the unique courthouse crafted in 1926. On June 7, 1958, the new expansion was dedicated.

Herbert Henry Dow once said, “I can obtain a hundred guys to tell me an thought won’t do the job. What I want are gentlemen who will make it operate.” That philosophy stayed with him his overall lifestyle, and our Midland County Courthouse stands now as a monument to that philosophy. He employed the proper men.

Like a living entity, the Midland County Courthouse has changed due to the fact 1926 and continues to transform. In a few yrs, it will be one particular hundred decades aged. Believe of the heritage it has viewed. Feel of the person liable for that piece of history that we just take for granted, Dr. Herbert Henry Dow. Background didn’t make him. He manufactured historical past.