The Blue Tempo Bar & Motel
Saugatuck (now the site of condos). Operated from about 1960 – 1976 when
it was destroyed by fire. This is one of the most asked about “lost”
buildings in Saugatuck. Here are some clues why. It advertised itself as
“Tops in Music,” and was a very popular (apparently a bit on the wild
side) gay and straight venue in the 1960—being probably the first “gay
bar” in West Michigan. Ask around. It began as an icehouse and had a
number of cabins overlooking the Kalamazoo Lake in the rear. Ed and Marie
Demeter were early owners –but best known was, Donald “Toad” Davis who
took over in 1960. It is remembered as cramped, noisy and crowded—and at
times even wet when the lake overflowed into the bar room and dance floor.
At the time this photo was taken the front portion housed the “Cozy
A. O. Wolbrink Department
Ganges (Blue Star
Highway)Recognize this one? It still stands and looks a lot like this.
Built before 1870 as a general store—photo from 1920s. This was Ganges
first Post Office in 1879. For a time Lillian Eddy (the mother of Joan,
Joyce, Barb, and Betsey), the wife of the postmaster in the 1890s, used
the second floor as a private school for local children after they had
graduated from high school—a sort of an early junior college. Looks like a
bread delivery going on.
Kirby House – Douglas
Built in 1890—photo during period when this famous house was the
Douglas Hospital (from 1931 – 1960). This nice example of Queen Anne
architecture (all the fashion at the time) began as a private residence (a
grand staircase and ballroom on the top floor—the place was known for big
dance parties) for Sarah Gill Kirby. The architecture firm was that of J.
H. Daverman of Grand Rapids (they also designed Ann and Chris Wiley’s
house on Butler Street). You would be surprised how many people around
today remember it from its hospital days—ask Daryl at the Saugatuck Post
Office. He was born there. Now the Kirby House B&B—famous for its good
Captain Crawford's House
404 Griffith Street, Saugatuck. Some of your know this
as the Hungerford house—recently sold, so we give it the name of its first
owner, a Great Lakes ship captain of schooner and steamships with a long
and adventurous career. It is a fine Italianate house like many here on
“the Hill.” It later became the home of a local baker (John Schaberg) and
his family, and now the home of Bill and Anne Bleeker. The house is a
‘pieced’ house—one section being built in the early 1870s and then
connected to larger house moved from nearby. The neighborhood is full of
‘captains houses’—as mapped out in the book Raising the Roof.