Archives for June 2015

Construction – Week of June 22, 2015

The past 2 weeks we put in plantings around the building, washed the building and then the exterior windows, finished exterior painting and painted the cistern. On June 22, Brendan Ross, a photographer, and Joe Gallagher, construction manager, went up in a lift to photograph the building from a unique angle. Here are some images from the week. … [Read more...]

The Maid’s Tale

Jonathan Chambers is a nice enough man, I suppose. Not as bad as some, not as good as others. He is fine. Doesn't raise his voice to me, or his hand.  Most importantly, his payments to me, such as they are, are given regularly. That is appreciated. Since my arrival here at the El Moore to begin my work for Mr. Chambers, I have spoken to some of the other help and not all are so fortunate. Quite frankly, I find it best not to concern myself with the decency of my employers so long as their lack of it does not interfere with my duties or causes other...issues. It is not for me to judge. That's God's work. I only do my work, looking forward to the end of the day when I sometimes am able to write a letter to my family. But that is not often. Most times I am so tired from the day's chores … [Read more...]

Walking Around the El Moore: Signature Exhibitions at the Detroit Historical Museum

As we admire the beautifully remodeled and restored El Moore building that is now 117 years old, we can be sure that it has seen a lot of Detroit history in and around the Cass Corridor and Midtown over the past century. The City of Detroit itself will celebrate the 314th anniversary of its founding, and one of the best places to experience Detroit’s history, including the time of the construction of the El Moore, the turn of the 20th century, is the Detroit Historical Museum. Historian Clarence Burton, after whom the Burton Historical Collection at the Detroit Public Library is named, founded the Detroit Historical Society in 1921. Now located just a short walk from the El Moore in the Cultural Center area of Midtown, the Detroit Historical Museum began in 1928 as a one-room suite on … [Read more...]

Construction Update – Week of June 8, 2015

The big news this week is the new landscaping that's going in around the building. We're adding trees, shrubs and flowers, and it should take a week or two to get everything in. Take a look at an increasingly beautiful site. … [Read more...]

Urban Cabins Part 1: You can get there from here

Now that the first wave of residents have moved in and are beginning to make the El Moore a home again after all these years, attention is turning slowly and surely to the Lodge. I will admit to a certain level of anticipation about the next task: Lodge design and appointments. Figuring out how everything will look and work, finding suppliers, gathering materials and options for review, and finally procuring pieces is exciting--especially for the Urban Cabins. Don't misinterpret me,  it isn't that I favor the cabins (though the views are stupendous) it is simply that they are really very different from the the rest of the building and so present unique challenges. The El Moore makes an undeniable statement on Alexandrine with its Lake Superior Red Sandstone facade.  That statement, that … [Read more...]

The History of the Midtown Fire Station

OK, that’s not actually the formal name of the fire station located just off of 2nd Avenue and Alexandrine, which is not quite one block east of the El Moore, as you will see in this very detailed and helpful historical description generously provided by Ms. Sheryl Jayson, who responded to my emailed request for more information about this structure. I doubt I could describe it any better than she did, so I’ll just let her tell you the story herself. It should be noted that the firemen of Squad 2 have been very important and active members of the Cass Corridor/Midtown neighborhood for years. The fire station you are referring to was built in 1909 (just 10 years after the opening of the El Moore when the neighborhood was experiencing a very active growth phase) and underwent extensive … [Read more...]