Treaty lines – Collect the whole set

Southwest corner of Mickasawbe reserve

The T-intersection of Fillmore and Fenn is the southwest corner of the Mickesawbe Reserve in Branch County, Michigan.  Fillmore Road is part of the west boundary, and Fenn Road is part of the south boundary.  The photo is from July 26 2009. Fenn Road follows a section line.  In fact, it’s also a township boundary.  […]

Smoke gets in your eyes (and your house, and your yard)

I’m off on a bike ride today.   It rained most of the day.  If I had known it would be like this, I wouldn’t have gone.  But I’m glad I did.   The new Ortlieb panniers did their job of keeping out water.   I put on my rain jacket only a mile from home.   Late in […]

Fictitious Railroad

In yesterday’s post (Maiden voyage of new panniers) I referred to two railroads crossing each other a few blocks to the east of the present-day depot/Mexican restaurant, in the direction where this train is headed.    I had tried to interpret the scene shown in this photo in terms of the 1872 atlas: This snippet shows […]

Maiden voyage of new panniers

I got new panniers last week — a set of Ortliebs from Wayne Boroughs at These are the Bike Packer Plus and the Sport Packer Plus. I took them out for an overnight campout this weekend.   My goal was to get in 100 miles on the two days, but I ended up riding 120 […]

Branch banks of Branch County

On the way to Coldwater this Sunday, a couple of bank signs in Union City caught my interest.   One objective of this ride was to get photos of the current version of Clyde D. Randall’s bank in Coldwater, as well as some of the sites of previous buildings where it was housed.    But it turns […]

Free banking and the Michigan State Public School at Coldwater

I still haven’t found any evidence that any of the stories about “free banking” in Michigan in the 1830s are myths, but I’ve still been concentrating only on the story about the Coldwater bank, which may also be the only one I know about.   The information as reported in the Branch County histories seem to […]

Loren Marsh, Indian trader and bank director

  Back on April 26 I posted a photo of Allen’s Root Beer Drive-In, from a ride through Coldwater in October 22 2005.    I’ve since found a web site, Roadside Peek, that has photos of a number of old Root Beer places and Drive-In eateries that are still doing business.    It’s fun to browse there, […]