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Mackinac Bridge For Sale - Well Sections of it and Definitely Not Mine - Interesting Auction


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Just in time for Christmas for the collector of all things transportation I just stumbled across this auction "Vintage steel deck grating from Mackinac Bridge"

This is the actual link to it:  https://www.govdeals.ca/index.cfm?fa=Main.Item&itemid=152&acctid=8676

 

Vintage steel deck grating from Mackinac Bridge

 

I know that as a kid my parents took us on a family vacation and one of the big adventures was crossing over the bridge.  More recently (11 years ago) we bought our cottage in Northern Ontario from a couple that lived just outside of Detroit and through discussions with Roger I learned that he had been posted there as an MP to guard the bridge in what I would only be guessing now when it was first built.  I'm sure that there are a plenty of stories and connections with this iconic bridge.

 

Don 

Edited by 3macboys (see edit history)
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44 minutes ago, keiser31 said:

When I lived in Michigan we walked across those grates. Used to be on every Labor Day, they would close off half of the bridge and folks could walk from the southern "mitten" tip to the upper peninsula.

I'm not keen on heights at the best of times, there is no way you would catch me walking over the grates being able to see to the lake below, way below!

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We have crossed that bridge many, many times while on Glidden and Chrome Glidden Tours, as well as several others -

always an experience,

and especially in the 1912 Oakland Touring with top and full side curtains in place with heavy winds coming sideways Should have said Crosswinds?) !! 

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765B14BD-1662-4445-897F-9C55D98044EB.jpeg

Edited by Marty Roth (see edit history)
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I remember back in 1989 bringing a van load of Boy Scouts back from a canoe trip on The AuSable river in the lower section of Michigan. We stopped in the little park where the ferrys left to go to Mackinaw island. After letting them watch and look for a while we loaded up and  headed into Wisconsin. Boys were being boys as we started over, loud and wiggly.  But as we started across it got quieter and quieter and by halfway across you could have heard the proverbial pin drop. I looked in the mirror and could see faces staring out the window with mouths open. They stayed quiet till we we about a mile away.  

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About 1975 or so.

We were in the U.P. coming down US2 towards the bridge on motorcycles, wind was howling.

There were cars and trucks parked on the side of I75 like a parking lot.

We get to the tool both, attendant says 60 mph boys.

Can we cross ?  Yes, we won't stop you (these days they would close the bridge).

We rode over at 30 mph, you could feel the bridge swinging left and right under the motorcycle.

Oh to be young and crazy again !

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1 hour ago, 3macboys said:

I'm not keen on heights at the best of times, there is no way you would catch me walking over the grates being able to see to the lake below, way below!

I WAS a little queezy looking down through the slots.

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1 hour ago, 3macboys said:

I'm not keen on heights at the best of times, there is no way you would catch me walking over the grates being able to see to the lake below, way below!

Yep.  I have a fear of driving on bridges due to the inability to swerve or exit.  When I go over the Mississippi, any bridge really I grip the bejesus out of the steering wheel and prey for no cross winds. 

 

In 2016 we took our family vacation from Iowa around Lake Superior enroute to Mackinac Island.  I had an F150 and they were working on that bridge.  I barely got across and my wife told me to slow down to whatever I was comfortable with.  Looking down, seeing water, I about peed my pants.  

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1 hour ago, 3macboys said:

I'm not keen on heights at the best of times, there is no way you would catch me walking over the grates being able to see to the lake below, way below!

When I walked across, I dropped a very shiny penny through the slots and it took FOREVER to hit the water. Then you could see it toss and turn under the clear water for quite a while until it disappeared.

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Just if you stay at the Grand be aware that the rooms on the view side were for guests, and the one on the other side, many with stairs to fall down in the dark, were for servants.

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I grew up in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and have crossed the bridge in all sorts of weather including a frigid walk from the UP to the LP (maybe they have changed the direction of the walk in more recent years). The most challenging crossing was in my Chevy 2500 pulling my 28' trailer with two Model Ts aboard in a 45 MPH crosswind.  That was a 20 MPH drive, and scary at that.

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Our first boat was a 25 foot Jaffco that was an older boat the insurance company would only insure it up to three miles of the Lake Michigan shore line. This was because Lake Michigan could be a lot rougher than the ocean as the waves are closer together. We sold the boat to a guy that wouldn’t believe any of it. On a group cruise of about 20 boats from Chicago to The top of the lake they hit a couple storms over the length of the cruise. As they were passing under the bridge the boat blew a plank and the boat when down in a couple minutes. No one was hurt as the two people just got on another boat. Now every time I went over that bridge I would think of that boat  To me it’s the Jaffco bridge. 

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8 minutes ago, B Jake Moran said:

Yep.  I have a fear of driving on bridges due to the inability to swerve or exit.  When I go over the Mississippi, any bridge really I grip the bejesus out of the steering wheel and prey for no cross winds.

For me it's all the above and not being able to see over the crest, once I get over the top I'm usually good to go, unless of course the traffic suddenly stops...after 28 yrs of marriage my wife finally noticed that I really hate suspension bridges.  A couple of years ago on a trip down through Savannah we entered the city over the Talmadge Memorial Bridge and to leave I found a ground level route - well worth the extra few miles of driving in my books.  I sold it as seeing something different than what we saw driving into the city.  

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My uncle worked in Public Relations at Ford and was present for the bridge dedication.  I have some document from that day which I think w

as signed by some of the dignitaries there.  

 

The bridge walk is still an annual Labor Day tradition, but didn't happen this year due to the virus.

 

The bridge opened in November 1957.  Our folks drove us kids up to see it in our new '57 Bel Air hardtop.  In later years, they told us that we were all too busy having fun playing on the floor of the back seat to even look at it!  We were all under the age of five.

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My first drive across it was in 1973, riding a brand new Harley Sportster.  I was stationed at Kincheloe AFB in the UP, and had ordered the Harley from my previous assignment overseas, to be delivered in Cleveland.  I took a bus from Sault Ste. Marie to pick it up.  On return, it was nighttime when I hit the approach to the bridge at close to 10 mph over the limit, where I typically ride/drive.  Those dimples on the grates dragged me all over the place.  I couldn't stop swerving and it seemed to get worse as I tried to slow down.  I seriously thought I wasn't going to make it to the other side.  I remember it was a bright, full Moon night, and I could see the water glistening waaaay below.  I never rode a bike across it again.

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37 minutes ago, George Cole said:

My first drive across it was in 1973, riding a brand new Harley Sportster.  I was stationed at Kincheloe AFB in the UP, and had ordered the Harley from my previous assignment overseas, to be delivered in Cleveland.  I took a bus from Sault Ste. Marie to pick it up.  On return, it was nighttime when I hit the approach to the bridge at close to 10 mph over the limit, where I typically ride/drive.  Those dimples on the grates dragged me all over the place.  I couldn't stop swerving and it seemed to get worse as I tried to slow down.  I seriously thought I wasn't going to make it to the other side.  I remember it was a bright, full Moon night, and I could see the water glistening waaaay below.  I never rode a bike across it again.

I lived in Sault Ste. Marie at the same time you were there.  Oddly my first antique car came from a seller stationed at Kincheloe. The car was a '47 Nash 600. The Nash was the first car I drove over the Bridge. I didn't have the nerve to try the grates in it.

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10 hours ago, Jim Skelly said:

The bridge opened in November 1957.  Our folks drove us kids up to see it in our new '57 Bel Air hardtop. 

My dad & mom married in November, 1957, and immediately left for their honeymoon.  As per my mom, one of the highlights of their honeymoon was driving over the Mackinac Bridge on their trip.  Apparently, it was only opened for traffic the morning they drove across it, even before the official public 'grand opening'.

 

Craig

Edited by 8E45E (see edit history)
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12 hours ago, alsancle said:

A stay at the Grand Hotel has been on my list for a while.

Stayed there many times.  When you arrive by ferry you are met with two aromas, chocolate and horse sh-t. (No cars other than emergency vehicles)  Experiencing High Tea is worth the stay.  Beverages and scones on the grand porch with a Harp playing in the background.  Nice to experience how the rich lived in "the day" for a kid who grew up on an Iowa farm without electricity until I was eight.

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1 hour ago, ericmac said:

I lived in Sault Ste. Marie at the same time you were there.  Oddly my first antique car came from a seller stationed at Kincheloe. The car was a '47 Nash 600. The Nash was the first car I drove over the Bridge. I didn't have the nerve to try the grates in it.

Interesting that your Nash would have only been 26 years old at the time...the equivalent to a 1995 car today. Would you drive across it today in a 1995 car? I guess to me it would depend on the car.

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14 hours ago, alsancle said:

A stay at the Grand Hotel has been on my list for a while.

 

Grand Hotel, Mackinac Island, MI | Historic Hotels of America

If you go there be sure to walk down to the Mission Point hotel for a drink or dinner. The structure is beautiful with massive pine logs in the shape of a teepee and the views are amazing. 
dave s 

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Would like to get there one day, but having hit ice buildup on the old Woodrow Wilson bridge (Washington DC) whilst riding a motorcycle, and sliding the rest of the way, those old grates are not high on my list of fun things to look at!

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