View from the Veranda: The History and Architecture of the Summer Cottages on Mackinac Island


“In View From the Veranda, Phil Porter invites us along for an inside look at the grand cottages of this uniquely Victorian island where cars are not allowed.

Tourists flocked to Mackinac Island after the Civil War. Blessed with breathtaking natural beauty, historic charm, and a healthy environment, Mackinac soon became one of the most popular resorts of the upper Great Lakes. The creation of Mackinac National Park in 1875 spurred the growth and popularity of Mackinac Island and prospective summer residents were soon clamoring for summer cottage property. From a modest 1870s tourist town, Mackinac Island blossomed into the Midwest’s most fashionable summer resort in the 1890s. The island’s cottage communities mirrored this evolution as simple vernacular homes were replaced with opulent architect-designed mansions.

Porter’s lifelong personal and professional connection with Mackinac Island provides the reader intimate access to the summer homes of the island. He contrasts fascinating historic photos with contemporary, full color portraits to describe the development, architecture and daily life of the summer cottage communities on Mackinac Island.”

Updated and revised with new pictures and text.

Chapter 1: The Development of Mackinac Island as a Summer Resort
Chapter 2: Origins of the Summer Cottage Communities
Chapter 3: Establishment & Growth of the Summer Cottage Communities
Chapter 4: Summer Cottage Life
Chapter 5: The Architecture of the Summer Cottages
Also includes: appendix, notes, bibliography, index, acknowledgements

Author: Phil Porter
Publisher: Mackinac State Historic Parks
ISBN: 0-911872-41-8
113 pages, hardcover, 1981, second edition 2006
Price: $24.95