One of the first works regarding Missaukee history that I discovered was George Stout's history, which covers the years from 1871-1917, beginning with the political organization of the county. The version I first found had been re-typed and photocopied in the Fred C. Hirzel collection of papers. Hirzel, in his transcription, added a number of his own comments and observations, creating something like a conversation between them.
Because Stout's history ends abruptly in 1917, both Hirzel and I assumed that Stout wrote it in 1917 and simply ran out of material. However, back in 2016 I found and photographed in the Lake City Ardis public library a hand-typed dog-eared version of Stout's work that seemed more original. And yet, it wasn't until 2022 that I took a good look at the photographs. Upon examination, I believe this copy is Stout's hand-typed and hand-corrected original--the very first copy that Stout composed even as he typed.
This original manuscript is typed on the backside of spare “Northern Michigan Road Commissioners' Association” stationery, which dates to 1939. Stout, who served as a Missaukee road commissioner through the 1930s, is himself listed on the stationery masthead as the association’s Secretary. The president noted in the masthead is Frank N. Smith, who served one year, in 1939 (County Road Association of Michigan, “2019-2020 CRA Member Directory,” page 12, 2019). In the document itself, Stout comments about the state of Missaukee roads in 1941 on page 30, so the work is at least as recent as 1941.
Notably, this original also corrects a number of typos, words, lines, and paragraphs that were corrupted by the time Hirzel had found a poor quality copy and retyped it as best he could. Elements that were confusing in Hirzel's version make more sense in this original.
A transcribed version of Stout's 1941 history was included in my 2016 "Early History of Missaukee County: A Reader," and this new updated transcription will be included in whatever next version of the Reader I might manage to publish.
For now, here's a standalone updated version of that chapter and Stout's 1941 history.
One of the sources Stout used for his 1941 work was his own publication from 1892, called "The Story of a Year in Missaukee County." It was a booklet published by the Independent in January of 1892. It was reprinted in January 1936 in the Republican.
An updated transcript of that work is also available here.
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