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INCIDENTS IN THE EARLY HISTORY OF THE SAGINAW VALLEY

BY JUDGE ALBERT MILLER

I have been told by those who knew that the water in the Saginaw bay and river was very much lower in 1822 than it has been at any time since that date. That, I think, was the year the government survey of land was made in this vicinity. About this time (1835) a plethora in the money market in the east which was caused by General Jackson's policy of withholding the government deposits from the United States bank and placing them in the State banks, began to be felt, and investments were made by speculators in western lands. During that summer Albert H. Dorr, of the wealthy firm of Tucker & Dorr, brokers of New York City, came west with a view of investing money in government lands. On his arrival at Detroit he examined at the land office the tract books of different localities and determined to invest in the Saginaw valley, and he found several vacant fractions on the Saginaw river, the locations of which pleased him, and he purchased without making an examination of the land; when he examined his purchases afterwards he found them principally water instead of land; one tract of 200 acres at the mouth of the river had not a foot of dry land, being covered from one to three feet deep with water, and now it is far out in the bay.
Mr. Dorr was delighted with the country, and the sight of so much nutritious grass suggested the idea at once of stock raising. Among other lands he selected for purchase was a tract of 800 acres of prairie located on the east side of the river at the south end of Crow Island, which he proposed to convert into a stock farm.

Michigan


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