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History Lives Here Text


(Grand Rapids Press)

Editor of thePress:


I note youreditorial in The Press of April 9 entitled "Real Estate Buyers vs.Speculators. I am not sure that I correctly understand what seems to be an insinuationthat "outsiders" are responsible for the present attempt to create aspeculative boom in Michiganrecreation property. I do know that this attempt is bung inspired and engineerby Michiganpeople and not by outsiders. Of course if it succeeds all sorts of undesirablespeculators will come in from outside. I am sorry to see that.


I bought some land in Michiganseveral years ago. that same year many other Chicago people bought land in the same neighborhood and alocal woman remarked to Mrs. Felt that "the crop of Chicago suckers was very good thisyear." It took me a couple of years to get Mrs. Felt in the frame of mindwhere she could enjoy a sojourn in Michigan.


If the Rivieraof the central states is ever developed so as to become nationally promoted, asit should it will be done by outsiders, as they will spend their money fordevelopment and are much more liberal with the public than the local people,but they are meeting with discourtesy and discouragement on every hand.


I, myself, built several miles of private surfaced road to enablepeople to drive auto-mobiles to the beach and let the public in freely; wherebefore there had been no such road for miles in either direction, yet when thepaper began to acclaim a certain supreme court decision as taking the riparianrights away from shore owners, some of those very same people called myattention to it with glee. Some of them had not been to the shore for 20 yearsuntil I made it available.


In the long run money spend in advertising is wasted if not supportedby a spirit of respectful hospitality, genuine good service and fair dealing.


Chicago, III.


D.E. Felt

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This clippingwas found in a scrapbook kept by Saugatuck historian May Francis Heath so it isuncertain which paper it was from, although was originally published in the GrandRapids Press in answer to some comment in their columns.


D. E. Felt of Chicago in 1919 bought apiece of property in Laketown Township north of Saugatuck,and in 1928 built a large mansion on the property. The estate was known for itsgardens and collection of animals.


!n the 1960'sa Catholic high school was built on the property and the mansion was used as aconvent for an order of cloistered nuns which supported themselves by bakingfor the school and doing fine embroidery.


When the highschool building was turned into a state prison the mansion became a statepolice post.


This spring agroup of area residents, with the assistance of Laketown Township which owns the property, havebegun to restore the mansion.

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