Moments in time … in photographs


Photos and information courtesy of La Porte County Historical Society Museum

(Click on photos to enlarge)

George Ames was an early businessman and philanthropist who arrived in Michigan City in 1834. A druggist by trade, Ames owned a hardware store. By 1869, the Ames Second Regiment Band was formed. He landscaped the grounds of the new Michigan City school built in 1880 and planted over 1,000 trees and shrubs. The former Michigan City Public Library building, completed in 1897, was partially funded with a $5,000 bequest by Ames. In 1939, Ames Field was completed in his honor.

This photo shows a moment in the disastrous fire that destroyed the P.W. Way building and the former Hall’s Opera House, located on the east side of Madison Street just north of Jefferson Avenue in La Porte on March 31, 1965. The fire was spectacular but no lives were lost. A snorkel truck had to be called from South Bend to fight the fire. Many remember the flames, smoke, burned-out cars and the building collapse.

U.S. Slicing Machine Company workers in La Porte in the 1940s file burrs from airplane wings manufactured at the plant. Sisters Josephine (left) and Lottie and Jean Kozik (white scarves) were part of the crew. U.S. Slicing later became Berkel, Inc., located on Berkel Drive in La Porte.

2 Responses to “Moments in time … in photographs”

  1. lawman

    Jun 04. 2021

    i was on my way to get a haircut when the Way fire was going-quite a spectacle. never did get the haircut that day but spent half the money at a drugstore for food!

    Reply to this comment
  2. Mr. Pat

    Jun 04. 2021

    I was at the PWA fire. We lived on Jefferson Avenue at the time. I was a Junior at LPHS. I remember the cars in the fire sending out an erie death sound as their horns blared. LP purchased a snorkel truck after this fire because they just could not control the fire with the equipment they had at the time.

    Reply to this comment

Leave a Reply