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Memorials of a Half-Century
By Bela Hubbard (1887)


THE writer came to Michigan, a youth, in the spring of 1835, and settled in the town of Springwells, two miles from the western limits of Detroit, then a city of less than 5000 inhabitants. On or near the spot of his first abode, upon the banks of our noble river, he has dwelt for half a century, and until the spreading city has absorbed the intervening farms.

Even a few years ago his present residence was so completely in the country, that the familiar rural sights and sounds were but little banished. The influences thus surrounding him are visible in many of the essays which make up this book, and which are in part compiled from his Diary.

Such are the chapters upon the seasons and upon the inhabitants, human and brute, of the neighborhood. Of the other papers, some will be recognized as having been read before the Detroit Scientific Association, and State and County Pioneer societies, and some have already received publication in newspapers and pioneer collections.

In the essays upon climate, the author ventures to believe, will be found something of merit, in the way of original observation and research. The character of our seasons he has endeavored to portray, less by attempt at vivid description, than by the plain statement of facts. Anything really new, on subjects of such universal interest, may prove of more than local value.

The reflection that many of these memorials may possess a value, at least in the eyes of partial friends—alas ! how few now — and may serve a purpose in the preservation of facts and phenomena which are fast being lost with the rapidly passing years, has been the inducement to their compilation into a volume.

B. H.
Vinewood, December, 1886.

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