This is the first installment of information about Muskegon from the
Greater Muskegon Historic Association. This project has been worked
on for the last two years by the association and is one
of two major projects the association has spearheaded, the other
being the Indian Cemetery. Secretary of the Association and the author
of this article, Patricia Kay Montney and Board Member, Tammy
Huston tell me-"The Stables are on the corner of Clay and Sixth
and the state of Michigan has it listed as one of the last Livery stables.
We would like to see the stables
totally restored to the way it looked like in the beginning including
a wooden sidewalk."
Here is the story on the stable. I have kept it short.
I am in the process of writing a book on
the stable. The first paragraph is the start of my
book and the title is the name of book. The proceeds from this book
will be used for historic preservation.
The stables has been my pet project for more than two years.
My files are thick. A point
you may find interesting is that this property had nine lumber
barons involved with it.
Also, although it has been written
that George Roberts had the stable built, it actually was Lyman
By: Patricia Kay Montney
Secretary of Greater Muskegon Historic Association
Down in a sleepy little hollow, nestled in on a corner lot within
historic district of Clay Avenue, stands the remnants of the
stable of Muskegon’s bygone lumbering era. Amidst our bustling
from view, sits a small Chicago bricks building, reminding us
time, when horses and carriages roamed the streets. A time
stables were common and the blacksmith's hammer could be heard
near and far.
When Muskegon was known as the’ World’ s Lumber Queen’ with streets
with sawdust and brick. An era when locals would
dub it ‘The Hole.'
Between 1857 and 1862 lumber baron Lyman G. Mason had the livery
a second floor living quarters erected. A man with much
forethought and a
head of his time. In a time went most of Muskegon's structures
with fires being prevalent and little organized efforts to fight
sought to build structures on his property, that would be more
Bricks were imported from Chicago and the modern architecture
of the day was
By 1862, George Roberts, another lumber baron would purchase the
the rest of the block from Mason. He would hold his lumbering
in the building in front of the stable and hire John B. McCracken
to run the
dry goods store on the corner. In subsequent years, McCracken
owner and through a will, the property would be held in trust
During this period William Nanninga a blacksmith would lease
stable for his business and lived there for a number of years.
The long established business of Muskegon Transfer Company would
property, which they least for numerous years from the Michigan
and livery stable in 1927. A lease agreement would continue
Nanninga until 1948. During which, horses would be housed
at the stable from
the city. The last of
which, was Daisy, who plowed the sidewalks of downtown during
For over thirty years this property has been in controversy with
one group or
another and the city wanting to save it, with the owner left
out of the
picture. Today the last livery stable for the state of
Michigan is in the
hands of the court. It fate now left for final judgment.
Interested in helping the Greater
Muskegon Historical Association? See the contact/membership info on the
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Copyright © 2000 by Patricia Kay Montney and the
Greater Muskegon Historic Association.
All rights reserved.