Monday, March 30, 2009


Thursday evening, April 2, will be the next General Meeting of the Lake Odessa Area Historical Society. The program will feature a discussion on the history of Jordan Lake and events associated with it. This should prove interesting and informative as much of our local history has centered on this natural resource. The meeting will be held at the Lake Odessa Freight Station Museum at 7 p.m. Anyone interested is invited to attend.


This past week-end witnessed another successful event in the life of the Lake Odessa Museum. The Doll and Toy Show focused on both the new and old which was met with great reviews. Many first time vistors commented on the wide variety of interests with many who had returned saying they were pleased with the new displays. Highlights of the show included two handcrafted doll houses (one is shown above), a vintage three foot Barbie-recently restored, a large collection of Steiff animals and the History of Monopoly display. In addition to the show a bake sale, raffle and free drawing were held. The Depot was open with toy trains on display and the Gift Shop recently stocked with new items. All we can say is...What a Show!


The recent Doll and Toy Show featured many new displays which added to its great success. Three of these displays were organized by "future" society members and each one proved popular with all ages of visitors. The top photo shows Elly with her display of Hunter Ann toys. This is Elly's first display and was very well done. The next photo depicts Blake with his display of G. I. Joe. This was also Blake's first time at the show and he did great. The lower photo shows Lilly with her Bratz Doll display. Lilly has assisted in other areas at the museum in the past and her displays are always super. Thank you Elly, Blake and Lilly for your interest and we hope to see more from you soon!

Monday, March 23, 2009


This photo was taken during the summer of 1964 and shows the dismantling of the Hotel Odessa. An earlier posting on this blog showed the hotel at its best as a successful business in Lake Odessa. A fire to the Machine Products building in 1963 had pretty much spelled the end of this historic building's life. This photo was recently donated to the Society and helps provide a visual history of this structure.

Sunday, March 15, 2009


The photo above shows cousins, Elfa (Meyers) Creighton and Melvin Fender, at about the age of three in 1903. The photo was taken by W. H. Bennett in Sunfield, Michigan, and depicts children during this era. Elfa is tightly holding her doll in one hand while her other hand holds Melvin's. This charming scene represents a time when life was simpler and a girl's doll was her prized possession. The Lake Odessa Museum's Doll and Toy Show, March 28 and 29, will feature many such "prized possessions." Dolls and toys from all eras will remind us of those simpler days. The museum is currently seeking items on loan or donation for this show. Perhaps, there would be those who would also write down their MEMORIES of childhood toys. This would be an excellent way for those out of town to participate in this show. Please send any memories you may have by email or you may post them here by clicking on the comment link below.

Thursday, March 12, 2009


A recent donation of research concerning the Prisoner of War Camp that was located in Lake Odessa during World War II has added a wealth of information to this important aspect of our local history. It was discovered that the State Archives at Lansing holds a great deal of documents concerning the camp in its collection. These documents tell a great deal of history that has not come to light until now. The document above is a receipt from June of 1945 and details items needed in the construction of camp structures. One of the most important items in this collection is a detailed drawing of the camp layout. This shows the location of the mess hall, officers quarters, latrines, and the prisoners tents. These documents are being collected and studied with the goal of a more complete history to be formed. If anyone can add any information to the history of the Prisoner of War Camp in Lake Odessa please contact the Society.