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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

SAND RIVER — Friday was a cold Christmas evening in June for intrepid kite-sailor Dan Eisaman, and Mother Nature wasn’t handing out any gifts. Unable to make his planned crossing of Lake Superior in the face of northerly and northwesterly winds, Eisaman returned to the south shore near the village of Christmas, a scant 20 miles east of his launch site in Sand River. “The wind didn’t cooperate,” Eisaman said this morning, “No wind, or too much wind in the wrong direction.” The 55-year-old computer manual writer — who has succeeded in crossing the other four Great Lakes by his unique method — made several attempts on Thursday, Friday, and Sunday to cross Superior propelled by a 16-square foot nylon kite. While the craft proved to be faster than he expected, Eisaman said the canoe’s three-inch keel wasn’t long or deep enough to hold him on course, and he’ll enlarge it before returning. After spending a cold day on the big lake, he also said he’ll have to do more research on the lake’s weather and prevailing winds before his next attempt. “I found out it’s awfully cold up here,” Eisaman said, “It got down into the 30s and you can’t do a lot of moving and shaking to keep warm.” Eisaman will return to his home in downstate Madison Heights, but plans to retry in July, after modifying his canoe and strategy, perhaps starting from the Canadian side of the lake in order to get the wind behind his kite.

60 years ago

MARQUETTE COUNTY — Total contributions in Marquette County to the 1959 Cancer Crusade amounted to $4,584.20, it was announced today by Howard C. Treado, chairman of the Marquette County Unit of the American Cancer Society. A breakdown of the county totals showed that $2,317.16 collected in Marquette, $1,364.05 in Negaunee, $429.30 in Gwinn, $262.75 in Palmer, $49.25 in Big Bay, and $161.69 in Skandia. Treado expressed the appreciation of the entire county unit for the efforts of volunteers who took part in the crusade. “Our volunteers,” he said, “were just as busy distributing literature as they were collecting funds. They realize cancer is a community problem since, statistically, it strikes two out of three homes.”