A Desirable Station, Soldier Life at Fort Mackinac, 1867-1895 is the story of more than 1,000 soldiers from around the world who lived and loved, worked and played, won honors and served jail time, ate, slept and died at Fort Mackinac. This is the final chapter of one of America’s great forts which was built during the revolution, attacked during the War of 1812, strengthened to protect John Jacob Astor’s fur business and given new life with the creation of Mackinac National Park in 1875.
This was an exciting time for soldiers stationed at Fort Mackinac. There was little fear of attack, drill and fatigue duties were light, modern conveniences abounded, and the burgeoning resort community offered plenty of exciting diversions for soldiers who received liberal amounts of free time. Many soldiers ordered to Fort Mackinac had the same reaction as Lieutenant Calvin D. Cowles who was pleasantly surprised when he arrived on Mackinac Island and eager to serve at this “desirable station.”
The book is illustrated with 70 images from the Mackinac Island State Park Commission collection, including a map from 1890.