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Saginaw Semi-Centennial Souvenir

Saginaw, Michigan, U.S.A., 1857 – 1907; Semi-Centennial Souvenir

 “The conception of the work which herein laid before the reader, was that of a souvenir that might fittingly serve as a memento in connection with the Semi-Centennial Anniversary of Saginaw as municipality. There have been many histories of Saginaw written in the past, and many souvenirs of the advertising order, but this work aims to bring the development of Saginaw down to date without an attempt to go into detail of her history, or to cumber the work with mere advertising except that it should have some permanent value in setting forth the advantages of the city for business and as a place of residence.” Publisher’s Preface Saginaw, Michigan, U.S.A., 1857 – 1907; Semi-Centennial Souvenir

As part of our on-going work to make the Castle Museum of Saginaw County History’s collection publically accessible, we are pleased to present a copy of Saginaw, Michigan, U.S.A., 1857 – 1907; Semi-Centennial Souvenir. Containing hundreds of photographs, this book captures Saginaw at the beginning of the 20th century. While published to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the incorporation of Saginaw, its real focus celebrating the community’s reinvention – from a lumber boomtown to an industrial center. Fittingly, for a book published under the Auspices of the Board of Trade, it focuses on businesses and the homes of their owners. There are almost no biographies or portraits of people of things. 

While this book is an exceptional source of photographs documenting early 20th century buildings, we must confess, it simply is a fun publication to browse through and transport back in time. In order to make the images in this book more accessible, we have prepared an index that will enable to you look for buildings by address, type and owners names. 

The links below will take you to a complete copy of the book and a separate index that will make it easier for you locate photographs in this book. 

Spencer, Frank S. and Saginaw Board of Trade. Saginaw, Michigan, U. S. A., 1857-1907 

Semi-Centennial Souvenir. Saginaw: Pub. Under the auspices of the Board of trade, 1907.

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View the digital collection here.

The link below will take you to an index of the images and places featured in Saginaw, Michigan, U.S.A., 1857-1907 Semi-Centennial Souvenir. The index was prepared by volunteers who spent hours identifying the locations depicted in the book. 


The index presented is arranged by different criteria: type of building, residences, other types of sites, the name of the owner or business and the street on which is located. As it is a spate PDF you will need to return to the scans of the book and look for the page. (While not the highest tech searching technique, it provides easy access and valuable additional access.)













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The Historical Society of Saginaw County is committed to serving the community by telling the story of Saginaw County through exploration, preservation, and presentation.


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The Castle Museum and History on the Move are supported in part by awards from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs and the National Endowment for the Arts.

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