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Superiorland Yesterdays

EDITOR’S NOTE: Superiorland Yesterdays is prepared by the reference staff at the Peter White Public Library in Marquette.

30 years ago

ESCANABA–A British hiker who walked from New York to California to raise money for hospices says neither the blizzards nor deserts kept from finishing his 5,000-mile trip. Colin Skinner, 22, who began July 19, 1988 and completed his trip March 21, stopped in Escanaba last week as he traveled home. His walk raised money for hospice programs in America and Cancer Relief in Great Britain. The “biggest danger was being run over by cars,” he said, “I feel pretty lucky to be here today.” He also journeyed through the Sierra Mountains in California, where because of the depth of the snow along narrow highways, he acquired snowshoes. He also recounted being in Death Valley one windy day when he found ten $50 bills along the roadside. “There it was, like a miracle,” he said, adding that he was low on funds and wondered how he would make it to San Francisco.

90 years ago

IRON RIVER–Seven miles of roadside timber on U.S. 2 west of Iron River, owned by the VonPlaten-Fox Co., will be permanently preserved by the state as the result of a purchase closed recently by the state highway department at the suggestion of H. F. Larson, county engineer-manager, one of the Upper Peninsula’s strongest advocates for roadside beauty. The timber includes the company’s entire holdings on this highway and completes the purchase of roadside timber on U.S. 2 in Iron County. In announcing the purchase, Larson indicated all roadside timber on state and county highways here will be saved from the woodman’s axe at least for a depth of 200 feet. The state has acquired by purchase all roadside timber on M-73 from Iron River to the Wisconsin line, through a deal closed with the J.W. Wells Lumber Co. a year ago. A recent purchase by the county, which is engaged in preserving road timber, was that on the Chicagoan Lake cut-off. The county owns considerable timber on County Road A between Gaastra and Chicagoan Lake and will, when the need arises, purchase the road timber on the Smoky Lake road, one of the prettiest drives in the country. Not alone intent on preserving standing beauty, Larson, as manager for the county park commission, is actively engaged in planting roadside trees and in reforesting county parks. This spring, 60,000 Jack, Norway, and Scotch pines were planted on the sand plains, lying on US 2 between Iron River and Crystal Falls, bringing the number of trees planted at this point to a quarter of a million.