Day 8: June 26, 2015
Feeder Finale

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Monday's pre-conference tour left the feeder route at US-23 and headed to Ann Arbor. On Wednesday, we followed the feeder on into Detroit but we were on a bus with limited photo capability. Today I'm finishing the feeder in my own car.

This is where I ate dinner on Wednesday and I'm making up for not getting a picture of the building then. There are many good reasons for eating at Haab's Restaurant. It's quite popular, it opened in 1934 and the building's history starts even earlier, and it's on the Chicago Road (a.k.a. LH Detroit Feeder). But the main reason I came is that it had once been a Chicken in the Rough franchise and they still serve a basically identical meal they call "Chicken in a Basket". I understand there may be some differences in how it's prepared but, to someone who has had the real thing only once, the Haab's version certainly compares favorably. I did get a picture of Wednesday's meal.

Ypsilanti keeps its water in an odd looking container.

An extraordinary number of motels line the south side of the road. Reportedly, a similar number once stood on the road's north side but were lost to its widening.

This is the oldest building at its original location in Dearborn. It was built in 1833 as part of an arsenal and became a museum in 1950. In between it has been a church, a school, fire & police stations, and more.

When it opened in 1914, Michigan Central Station was the tallest railroad station in the world. Unused since 1988, the building has received no love at all and has been stripped by looters in addition to suffering natural and unhindered deterioration. However, like at the Packard plant, there are glimmers of hope. The banner on the front and a February BBC story speak of new windows. It's a start.

Although construction kept me from reaching the LHA designated end of the Feeder at Woodward Avenue, I did reach the Chicago Road plaque at Michigan and Washington.

This is the Packard Proving Grounds. Built in 1927 as a place for the Packard Motor Car Company to test its vehicles, it had a variety of owners and uses until coming under the stewardship of the Packard Motor Car Foundation in 2002. There is an informative sign out front. The three buildings that remain are the Lodge, the Repair Garage, and the Engineering Building. 458 feet of the original 2.5 mile track have been preserved along with the timing tower. The last picture is the view from the track look back toward the Lodge. The water tower visible in a couple of the pictures can be seen better here. Some items salvaged from the plant are stored here including a carved lintel and an informative plaque.

I'm here for the kickoff dinner for the Henry B. Joy Tour. I'm not joining the tour but the dinner was a good opportunity to see the Proving Grounds and catch up with some old friends. In fact, I gave one of those friends, Milton Wheeler, a ride back to the hotel as his 1947 Packard was still in transit from California. There had been some problems with the transporter but it was due to arrive around midnight.

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