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Cruising: 1907

Detroit circa 1907. "Band concert on Grand Canal, Belle Isle Park." 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.

Detroit circa 1907. "Band concert on Grand Canal, Belle Isle Park." 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Publishing Company. View full size.


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Where'd we park the car?

Notice the line of cars on the right hand shore.

What entertainment was?

Amazing, all these people (of ALL ages) beautifully dressed and seated, watching intently--but what exactly ARE they watching so intently ? (people just canoeing by? I still haven't quite figured out that part) and why are so many of them doing so? (I have teenagers and the very idea of them dressing up to watch something like this would put them in conniptions>>how the world has changed).

[As noted in the caption, this is a band concert -- everyone is listening to the orchestra on the bridge. - Dave]

re: Program Notes

One way to get an idea of the kind of thing the band was playing is to follow this link to the Cylinder Preservation and Digitization Project of the University of California at Santa Barbara. Do a search for year 1907 (or any other +/- about five years) and listen to items listing a band as performer.

Solemn bunch

Wait! There's a woman smiling, over there on the right. Obviously a troublemaker.

Canoe Races

Fourth canoe on the right headed toward the band pavilion and second canoe from the bottom on the left are all girls. Those guys with the pillows are well prepared for events to come.

Program Notes

As a musician, I would love to be able to hear what the band is playing. I wish someone would discover that there was a recording made of this band.


I know somebody will explain the large spotlights on some of these canoes!

Carbide Lights

Some of the canoes are sporting what appear to be carbide lights. The only way to watch those night time submarine races with your gal.

I gotta wonder

How many of these damsels "accidentally" took a tumble into the water, only to have half a dozen handsome young men dive in to save her!

Honey, are you enjoying the concert?


Now I know what's missing

... from canoe rides -- Pillows! Lots of pillows, and even headlights! I see that I have the concept of rustic, quiet canoe rides all wrong.

Speaking of checking out

The two young ladies seater lower right are checking out the canoes (or their gentlemen paddlers) quite intently.


Why they are called "the good old days." I hope the pavilion has survived.

Awesome Needlework

Check out the canoe in the lower middle of the picture. The two pillows with the designs on them. I especially like the one with the Indian head on it.

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