Today marks the beginning of a multi-year project by MDOT to completely rebuild the US-2 bridge across the Escanaba River near Pioneer Trail Park. Running from April of 2017 through October of 2018, this construction project will likely be a headache for many commuters. We thought it was also a great opportunity to take a look back at the 'new' bridge.
The current bridge was constructed in 1929, replacing the original auto bridge that spanned the Esky closer to its mouth. It was widened in 1956 and received numerous small repairs over the years, but is now considered 'functionaly obsolete' by MDOT. The new bridge will feature several improvements, including an additional 37 feet in width to accommodate wider shoulders and a pedestrian pathway. Part of the project includes the replacement of a nearby E&LS railroad bridge across US-2.
We plan to write a Then & Now post once construction is completed next year. In the meantime, enjoy these views showing the bridge in its heyday. Clicking the images will take you to their corresponding exhibits.
Our very first holiday card, sent in April of 1911 and acquired just last month, pretty much says it all. This card is located in our Holiday exhibit.
Our 250th postcard has arrived! An early divided back card, it's a view of Wells Avenue looking west with a group of five or six grade school-aged children standing on the corner. Two high school students (or possibly young adults) are standing on the sidewalk. All are clearly posing for the picture. Although summer trees blot out most of the houses, a large church (unidentified) is visible in the background. The card is postmarked August 26, 1908 from Escanaba, and was sent from C. L. French to Sara L. Brown of Grand Rapids, Michigan. While neither our oldest–nor our most beautiful or well-preserved–postcard, it is truly a milestone to reach 250 cards, which represents nearly 20 years of collecting. This card is located in our Other City Streets exhibit.
While most of our postcards were mailed to folks throughout the midwest, some traveled even further away. It's kind of neat to think of all these great cards starting out in the same place, but ending up scattered across the country. To better illustrate this, our Where'd They Go? page contains an interactive map showing the destination city for each of our postmarked cards.