Michigan, Where We've Been

The Henry Ford Museum

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The Roads in Michigan

Heading out of Ohio, we went north into Michigan. It only took a few miles on Michigan’s I-75 to lead me to give away my first award for a state (having not yet visited them all yet).

Michigan wins hands-down for the worst roads in the country! The speed limit on the I-75 is 70 mph for cars, 65 mph for trucks, with a minimum speed of 55 mph. Well, I can’t imagine anyone riding safely on that road going 25 mph. The dilapidated road has fallen into disrepair. Apparently a contractor who was paid to fix the road used a summer mix of concrete instead of the winter mix, causing upheavals every few feet.

The truck bounced over every faulty “repair” as I tried to maintain our position on the road and trying to slow to 55 mph to lessen the jolting impact. The water in my cup that had been sitting still and calm in the center cupholder for the first part of the trip, now violently shot up into the air like a rogue tsunami wave before crashing down in a torrential flood of freshly scented lemon water. Splash after splash came out of that cup until more of it was on me and the seat I was riding in than was left in the once full cup. 

Nearly ten minutes of being on this road I was convinced we had broken something in the RV or truck, besides my will to go on. But somehow, some way, we surprisingly made it with all parts still intact. I am convinced of God’s intercession on our behalf.

Here you go, Michigan. Your award for worst roads in America!

The Henry Ford Museum

Roads aside, we really did enjoy our stay in Michigan. While near Dearborn, we visited the Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation, simply called The Henry Ford.

This was a fascinating museum covering everything from harvesting machines and futuristic houses to Presidential limos. 

Take a look at this cut away of an early Ford. You can see all the pieces that joined together to make up this 1923 Ford Model T.

I remember reading this story to the kids when they were little about Henry Ford’s race. In 1901, cars were still a novelty and those who did own them were the wealthiest of society. Ford was hoping to change the status quo and put cars into the driveways of the everyday American. Ford had decided to enter a car race in the hopes that it would draw the attention of investors and provide him the funding to reinvest in his car company, taking his vision into the market of mass production. He ended up winning that race (with a top speed of 72 mph) and opened the Ford Motor Company shortly thereafter, in 1903. 

In addition to cars, the museum had this unique little setup for a Dymaxion house. After WW2, someone had the idea to repurpose the airplane factories into home manufacturing plants. This circular shaped 1940’s house was to be the cost effective new home of the future. Each section was divided up through inner walls around a central plumbing and electrical hub. The total cost of the house would have been around $6,500 each. The idea, while it would have been interesting to implement, never took off. 

All kinds of harvesting and farm equipment are shown throughout the museum. I overheard someone talking about wanting their picture taken next to one of them for the significance it had in their farming careers. 

The collection of Presidential limos was pretty interesting. This was FDR’s 1939 Presidential ride, the Sunshine Special. 

This is the famous JFK limo that he was assassinated in. The top cover was removed on the day of his assassination. You’ll probably remember it from the Zapruder film as a convertible.

Another of the earlier cars in American history is this classic. Resembling more of a train engine without rails, this car had a handbrake, rod for steering, bell for a front horn and small (gas?) lamp for seeing at night.

Another classic car.

The Henry Ford Museum is also the home to the bus that made Rosa Parks famous and sparking the Civil Rights movement for refusing to give up her seat.

Ellie sat in the same seat that Rosa sat, second from the front.

We could spend much more time there than we did. There was so much to see. They also offer a factory tour of the Ford plant if you’re in town and have the time to visit.



Lower Huron Metropark – Walnut Grove Campground

Walnut Grove Campground is located inside the Lower Huron Metropark. There is a $10 daily fee in addition to the camping fee. There are no hookups and most people staying had either small trailers or tents. We were the only big rig, but we fit just fine in the site. 

They have a dump station on site with non-potable water for rinsing the tank and just a bit further in the dump area is a spigot for potable water. We were able to use our solar panels to provide plenty of power for our stay there, but generators are also allowed between daytime hours.

Our neighbors were locals and very friendly. In the evening, the area behind our campsite was filled with fireflies. We had fun catching them as they’re rather slow fliers.

Turtle Cove is a swimming pool / water park within the metropark, for an extra fee.  

We had a good Starlink signal at 90 down and 18 up. Verizon was at 2 bars on the phone and 4 bars with our cell antenna. AT&T came in at 3 bars on with cell antenna.