While reading about a judge’s order for the demolition of the former Hotel Charlevoix, a derelict building near Detroit’s Grand Circus Park, I came across a the fascinating website HistoricDetroit.org.
Founded by photographer, writer and Detroit history fan Dan Austin, the nonprofit site is a treasure trove of images and vintage postcards that help explain why the city was once called “Paris of the Midwest.”
I’ve seen a lot of pictures of Detroit but I was astounded by some of the photos showcasing buildings—many long-gone, others altered beyond recognition—and streetscapes that make it look like a different city. I love the view above of a stretch in downtown’s Park Avenue District.
Anyone is invited to share photos and stories at HistoricDetroit.org. There’s also a store where you can buy Austin’s books, “Lost Detroit: Stories Behind the Motor Cit’s Majestic Ruins” and the recently published “Forgotten Landmarks of Detroit,” as well as “Hidden History of Detroit” by Amy Elliott Bragg.
I plan to make a return trip and spend some time in this Detroit.
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