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        Bonus points to the first person who can tell us the meaning of the tent-globe. (UPDATE: Commenter KAP was first to identify the emblem as belonging to the Knights of the Maccabees.)

Circa 1905. "Petoskey, Michigan -- Lake Street." Rolling out the Welcome Arch. 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.


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No Knock On Bruce Catton, but ...

...another rather well known author by the name of Hemingway spent the first 22 summers of his life in and around Petoskey. The local museum has a nice exhibit, the annual Michigan Hemingway Days are held nearby and if you've read The Torrents of Spring, you've read about Petoskey; the story and locales are based on the town.

Despite the horse leftovers and the wires, I can still see why Ernest rather liked the place.

The Civil War, in recent memory

Vexman's comment about Wescott made me realize that for the folks in the picture, it had been only 40 years and 5 months since the end of the Civil War. That's nearly the same as the gap between today and the end of the Vietnam War (39 years, 10 months) -- an event that for many (most?) of us who are of a certain age, still lives vividly in our memories.

Civil War historian

Bruce Catton (1899-1978) was born in Petoskey. He wrote an excellent autobiography called "Waiting for the Morning Train" about his early years growing up in the area. New and used copies are available online.

Wireless Upgrade

Other than that, and some of that newfangled asphalt road surfacing, all the charm has been well preserved:

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My kind of place.

Thousands of wires obscuring the sky and horse manure from curb to curb. Good old days? Not always.

The Stars My Camp, The Gods My Light

The tent on the globe emblem appears to belong to the Knights of the Maccabees, whose motto was ASTRA CASTRA NUMEN LUMEN, translated above.

Knights of the Modern Maccabees

The tent is the symbol of the Knights of the Modern Maccabees. This picture was of the September 1905 annual meeting for the Northern Michigan Modern Maccabee association, which was originally scheduled for August. The following year the City of Cadillac played host.

From the September 9, 1905, issue of the Traverse City Daily Eagle:

The crowd which celebrated Maccabee day at Petoskey yesterday, was one of the largest crowds ever assembled in Northern Michigan and the success of the day's events was a source of credit and gratification to the resort city.

The parade held on September 8 was over a half-a-mile long and featured 8 bands. The band from Cadillac City took First Class honors, while the Traverse City band took Second. But then, only those two bands chose to enter the contest.

Petoskey was home to Tent No. 223, Knights of the Modern Maccabees, and Hive No. 61, Ladies of the Modern Maccabees.

Wescott, on the other hand ...

Wescott appears to be a veteran of the US Army 7th Corps during the Civil War, I believe, and uses that emblem to advertise his business.

Pitching a tent

The tent and globe is the symbol of the Knights of the Maccabees. A convention of theirs must have taken place in this location.

Knights of the Maccabees was a fraternal organization formed in 1878 in London, Ontario, Canada by members of the Order of the Foresters. Most active in the U.S. state of Michigan, the group's fraternal aspects took a backseat to providing low-cost insurance to members. In the society's early years it also provided other final-expense related benefits such as society cemeteries.


That banner would be in honor of the "Knights of the Maccabees" -- a nearly forgotten fraternal organization. I guess they were in town for a convention.

Easy One

I wish all mysteries were so simple. This is likely a gathering of the Knights of the Maccabees, a fraternal society restricted to whites males (with a women's auxiliary) that was big around the turn of the last century but especially here in Michigan. There main focus was less on ceremonial rites and more on being a mutually benevolent insurance society. That logo is a very familiar one on ephemera and can still be found on certain surviving building exteriors.

Knights of the Maccabees

State organizations were called "camps," i.e., the Michigan Camp. Local groups were "Subordinate Tents." The national level was the "Supreme Camp."

[Excellent work! Below: cigar-box art. - Dave]

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