Will Montgomery and the “Sunday Sun”

William F. Montgomery, Editor of the “Sunday Sun” Photo courtesy of Susan Cucchiarella

William F. Montgomery, Editor of the “Sunday Sun”
Photo courtesy of Susan Cucchiarella

           During the late 1880’s Will Momtgomery and the Sunday Sun, provided an alternative newspaper voice to that of the more established Semi-Weekly Pioneer. The spirited newspaper rivalry between the Sun and the Pioneer lasted just four years, but was one of the strangest ever recorded.

           Will Montgomery was born on August 31, 1857 in Kokomo, Indiana—the eldest of four children born to Seymour and Elizabeth Montgomery.  Montgomery’s father was a respected newspaper editor in Mishawaka, Indiana. By age 11, Will had joined his father’s business as a typesetter at the Mishawaka Enterprise.

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Artifacts from the Ossawinamakee Hotel

Business Card from the Ossawinamakee – George Orr Collection donated by Chris Orr

Business Card from the Ossawinamakee – George Orr Collection donated by Chris Orr

            During the late 1880s and 90s, Constant Moody Ruggles was the proprietor at the Ossawinamakee Hotel. Ruggles was a Civil War veteran from Oshkosh, Wisconsin, who first came to Manistique in 1875 with Ebenezer James. Ruggles was a partner in the James Bros. Sawmill which flourished briefly at the village of Jamestown on the Manistique River. He had diverse business interests including a butcher shop, stage coach line, livery stable and a strawberry farm. According to the above business card, Ruggles was also a guide for tourist fishermen seeking a good trout stream.

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Decoration Day Celebration – May 30, 1885

The above is a rare photo of Manistique’s Civil War veterans getting ready for a patriotic holiday celebration. Pictured from far right: John Gayar, Henry Brassel, Amos Hill, George W. Rice  (partially hidden behind Hill) and Wright E. Clarke (buttoning coat), On the far left, the men with insignias on their hats are David Blair (left) and William Wood (Right).

The above is a rare photo of Manistique’s Civil War veterans getting ready for a patriotic holiday celebration. Pictured from far right: John Gayar, Henry Brassel, Amos Hill, George W. Rice (partially hidden behind Hill) and Wright E. Clarke (buttoning coat), On the far left, the men with insignias on their hats are David Blair (left) and William Wood (Right).

Decoration Day – 1885 

            Manistique’s first celebration of what was then known as Decoration Day, took place on Sunday, May 30, 1885. The citizens of the town were stirred from their sleep at the rude hour of 3:00 A.M. by the ringing of hammers and anvils announcing Decoration morn. In the forenoon the streets became crowded with horse drawn wagons and carriages, as pioneers from the country arrived to celebrate the holiday. By noon, the stirring martial music of the Cornet brass band was heard echoing down the avenues.

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