24 March, 2014

A Mystery Somewhat Solved


In a previous post I had written at length about the fence and gates that were installed at Edith Rockefeller McCormick's residence at 1000 Lake Shore Drive - wondering what ever happened to them, as I knew for certain that they had not been sold for scrap during WWII. (The fence and gates remain in photos taken of the house just prior to its demolition in the early 1950s.)

I'm pleased to report that the mystery has been partially solved in that we now know what became of the fence when the house was razed.


Edith Rockefeller McCormick's original plat of property was purchased by a syndicate and split into two developments; 1000 Lake Shore Drive on the north, and 1000 Lake Shore Plaza (130 East Oak St.) on the south. A friend of mine has been researching one of these properties, and as she knew my connection to Edith the topic of the fence and gates arose in our discourse.


Had I pressed one month further in my initial sleuthing, I would have discovered that in June of 1953 Harold L. Perlman, head of the syndicate involved in the development of the property purchased the fence and donated it to the Board of Jewish Education for installation at the Morris Perlman Boys Camp on Clear Lake near Buchanan MI.


A few questions, however, do remain. When Gen. Joseph Torrance purchased the great gates by Ambrüster Bros. (for $20,000) from Germany's exhibition in the Manufactures and Liberal Arts Building at the World's Columbian Exposition, he enlisted Winslow Bros. to create and install the accompanying iron fence. Were both gates and fence donated but Perlman to the boys camp? The camp closed in the 1970s - do either remain?

Next stop, Buchanan MI.

2 comments:

HalfPuddingHalfSauce said...

You might check with Fuller's Resort and Campground -http://www.fullersresort.com/ -They've been around since 1887 and might have some insight.

Todd said...

This article posted to Facebook, which caused quite a bit if dialogue. My friend Ed summed it up quite well:

I saw that in the BJE Blog...
" In 1946, the camp moved to Clear Lake near Buchanan, Michigan, and subsequently, in recognition of a gift from the Perlman Foundation, was renamed Morris Perlman Camp Avodah. The program’s goal was given as “to provide Jewish high school boys with an opportunity to spend two months in a wholesome Jewish environment centered around work, self-government, and study of Judaism. The camp became coeducational in 1954.

Also at Buchanan, the College of Jewish Studies established Camp Sharon in 1948 for its students preparing to teach. The camps thereafter combined as Camp Sura and operated for four summers with elementary, secondary, and college divisions. With the growth of other Jewish summer camps and a lack of community funding, enrollment at Camp Sura declined. Camp Sura, the only Chicago area camp teaching Hebrew, was closed in 1970 and the property sold."

Avodah was sold to a evangelical church which still uses it for a summer camp.