Thursday, February 2, 2012

Bread, Cold Turkey & A Boat Captain Named Allen

Eloise might have been a loathsome place to live as a confined lunatic but it apparently could bake some delicious bread. So was the consensus of the jail inmates (I'm assuming it was the Wayne County Jail) in 1921. Originally the prisoners had mocked the decision with the normal reticence directed towards the mental institution but their minds were changed by the "best bread we ever ate."

The facility received upwards of 200 loaves per day from Eloise and with an additional 100 loaves going to the juvenile detention center the cost savings for the county was 6.5 cents per loaf or about $20 a day. Which seems like a pittance but in today's terms it's roughly $250 per day

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Mary Daley, a septuagenarian and reformed teetotaler during a drying out period at Eloise, needed only a few hours of furlough time on a visit to see her son in Detroit to destroy two years of sobriety. She wound up back in the woman's station on Friday night after imbibing a little too voraciously. She was released Saturday morning only to be brought back accompanied by two police officers when her "pocket money and the cold air" began to affect her. The next stop was good old Eloise for another ride on the dry wagon.

from The Detroit Free Press; January 26, 1914

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I didn't really feel like researching anything tonight so I picked out a short article which ended up being more than I bargained for. It turns out that the yacht owner Charles W. Kotcher was a Detroit lumber magnate who not only owned several yachts but also a few ships! To top it off he had a freighter named after him.

As for the Wilanna, here it is in all of its glory accompanied by a short blurb from Power Boating Vol. 3, 1907:

Information is scarce about the boat captain but with a common name like John Allen he probably got lost in the shuffle. Which is unfortunate because the MAN probably was trying to take him out.

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