Daddy D and I have returned to our short Labor Day vacation to Michigan. We did see several sites. We saw the Old Rugged Cross Church, where the old Methodist hymn written by Reverend George Bennard was first performed. The church itself was built in 1862 as a hops barn. When the hops industry failed in 1876, a Methodist Episcopal congregation bought the building and converted the barn into a church. In 1915, the church building was sold to a farmer and was used as a barn for 83 years. In 1998, a local couple purchased the building and with others founded The Old Rugged Cross Foundation, a multi-denominational non-profit organization. The organization is in the process of renovating the building to a church.
Today, we left Niles traveling down US 12 to Three Oaks and then on to New Buffalo. In Three Oaks, we discovered a delightful concern called the Featherbone Factory, which is a gift and curio store as well as a manufacturer of concrete stepping stones. The Featherbone Factory building once housed just that, a company that produced bones of corsets in the 19th century. The bones of the Featherbone Factory were actually made from ground-up turkey quills. Edward Warren developed a process to use the featherbones in corsets revolutionizing an industry that had been relying on whalebones to provide structure in women's corsets. The inventor also was responsible for preserving the Warren Dunes shoreline.
Finally, in New Buffalo we stopped at the beach. After all what is a trip to Michigan, without visiting one of the Great Lakes?