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December 10

Welcome to our new web-site.


As you know, James Smithson gave a large amount of money to the U.S. government for the purpose of preserving and the diffusion of knowledge.

We seek to bring together those people interested in history and particularly those who care a great deal about the history of the Central Lake area and its brave settlers.

The Society's major function is to discover, collect and preserve and make accessible those materials which may help to establish and illustrate the history of our area

December 16

At the last board meeting we  decided to not meet in December

but instead meet at the library in January.

This past year has a busy one.  The carriage house has been cleaned up and much done to improve its appearance.  It is becoming a museum in its own right, displaying a great any artifacts relating to our agricultural background.

Thanks to a major donation for the purpose and a great deal of work provided by the members of the school shop class a major portion of the garage has been re-sided.

Further, the modern appliances in the kitchen have been removed.  The kitchen now has an old ice box, an old range and a hutch.  Wainscoting has been removed from the former meat market and put in the kitchen.  The tile has been  removed and the original flooring re-finished.

We continue to desperately need volunteer help.  Granted we turn the heat down in the winter but we're prepared to turn the heat up  so that docents can open the house to visitors, clip obituaries from the newspaper to add to our files and, perhaps, present us with new ideas for making our efforts more visible and attractive to the community,

And, for heaven's sake, please note that we don't have a vice-president. Please, won't one of you step up and help provide us with strong leadership?

Below are two pictures in the photo album.  Click on the little image to see it in a larger format.  The first image is that of the Knowles House  which is now our museum and second image is the Knowles meat market in better days.

 January 1, 2016

There, I did it.  I didn't type the wrong year.

I've been reviewing a "to-do" list I inherited early in 2013.

. elect new officers      -- done

. revise constitution     -- done

. finish carriage house -- done

. web-page                  -- being done

. PastPerfect               -- it costs almost $700; no way !

. Open hours               -- generally open 3 days, need more docents

. Fundraisers               -- We hope to have a tea or two; I wish we

                                        could resume having pot-luck suppers`

                                        on the lawn but here again we need help.

. Order archival supplies --  Neither our financial condition or our

                                            need seems appropriate at this time.

While the above indicates progress is being made, I must report that membership dues are DOWN from last year.  Lois and I are working with Jack Bodis on a mailing to all postal patrons of Central Lake.  I've

gotten a bulk mailing permit for the Society.  In the best of all possible

worlds I'd put out a quarterly letter by e-mail but I have so few addresses.

In order to spark interest in this site I will attempt to upload some of the early settler stories from the old site and maybe occasional "tidbits from The Torch."

January 28, 2016

At our last meeting we passed a resolution to not meet on days when the school system declares a "snow day."


Dr. Chamberlin was a native of Rochester, Lorain county, Ohio, born on the 5th of September, 1842. His father, Dr. Marshall Chamberlin, was born in Ontario county, New York. As a young man, Dr. Marshall Chamberlin went to the state of Ohio, and he finally entered the Ohio Medical College, in the city of Cincinnati, becoming one of the skilled and popular physicians and surgeons of the state.

He was engaged in the practice of his profession for thirty years in Rochester and Oberlin, Lorain county, Ohio, when he came to Michigan in 1866, locating in Hilldale, Hillsdale county, where he continued in the active practice of his profession for a score of years, his death there occurring in 1886.

His wife, Betsy Odell, was born in the state of Ohio, and her death occurred in the year 1856..

Dr. Cyrenus Chamberlin passed his boyhood days in Ohio, securing his educational discipline in the common schools and supplementing this by a course of study at Oberlin College, while he took up the study of medicine under his father. The war of the Rebellion broke out and in August 1862 he enlisted as a member of Battery E, First Ohio Light Artillery Volunteers and went to the front assigned to the Army of the Cumberland.

He participated in several engagements and continued in active service until the expiration of his term, having received his honorable discharge in July, 1865. In his latter years the Doctor still practised medicine to a limited extend, confining his attention mostly to such of his former patrons and their families.

Doctor Chamberlin began the active practice of his profession in Jamestown, Ottawa county, Michigan, and in 1880 was successfully established in Eastport.

He was an owner of a farm in Central Lake township of one hundred acres, of which about sixty acres were reclaimed to cultivation. He raised the usual products best adapted to the soil and climate, and four acres of land were devoted to orchard purposes, his apple, cherry and plum trees.

He served as health officer for many years. Mrs. Chamberlin was a faithful and consistent member of the Congregational church.

In the year 1865, Dr. Chamberlin married Miss Maria Jackson, who was born in London, England, and reared in Ohio, being nearly six years old when brought to America. She was a daughter of John and Amy (Barney) Jackson, who came from England to the United States in 1852 and settled in Ashland county, Ohio, where Mr. Jackson continued to be engaged in farming until after the war of the Rebellion, when he came to Michigan and located in Ottawa county until 1881, when he took up his residence in Antrim county, where he passed away in June, 1900, while his devoted wife passed away in January, 1903.

The Jackson’s came to Central Lake about 1875 and lived there for a relatively short time, moving later to Elk Rapids.

John Jackson was, during the Civil war, a member of Battery B. First Ohio Light Artillery Volunteers, in which he served for four years..

Dr. and Mrs. Chamberlin had one child, Edcel Vernon, who was born November 1, 1877, in Jamestown, Ottawa county, Michigan, and married Nellie Bradshaw in 1901at Eastport. She was the daughter of William Bradshaw.

Dr. Chamberlin’s sister, Harriet, married James Arnold. We’ll probably address this line later.

Tidbits from The Torch

From The Torch of April 5, 1900  The paper announces that Arch Cameron of Traverse City and his brother, Alex, of Torch Lake, have purchased the mercantile business of the Cameron Lumber Co.  Arch had heretofore been head of the mercantile business of Hannah Lay & Co. of Traverse City while Alex ran the Torch Lake Store.

From The Torch of April 12, 1900:  Mr Ackley announces that he has 500 lb. all-steel ranges for sale at $35 at his location opposite the Cameron store.

From The Torch of Jan. 3, 1901:  The editors says he has been invited to see the new Central Lake Masonic Lodge which are situated over Ackley's hardware store in the Upthegrove block.

The following is an obit published on Nov. 19, 1914.  I know there are descendants in this area.

Silas B. Anway was born in Scipio, Seneca county, Ohio, on March 9, 1839.  He was the oldest of twelve children.  He came to  in 1854, where he remained until 1859 when he returned to Ohio and engaged in agricultural pursuits.  In 1862 he enlisted as a private in Company H, 101 Ohio Volunteers and served until the end of the war.

He then returned to Ohio and in the spring of 1867 came to Michigan, locating in Barry county where he made his home for twelve years.  He came to Central Lake in the fall of 1880.


In 1868 he was united in marriage to Sarah R. Sanford, of Seneca county, Ohio.  To this union were born two children, Sanford B. Anway of Detroit . Bertha Edwards of Cheboygan.  Mrs. Anway died July 19, 1897.

Mr. Anway was the united in marriage to Mrs. Magaret Sanford, of Attica, Ohio ... After a short illness he died very suddenly on November 18, 1914.