By Mark Pearson
On November 11, we recognize and celebrate the lives and service of our veterans and the sacrifice that many of them made including those who sacrificed all to protect the freedoms that we all enjoy. Keeping that in mind, I would like to take the opportunity to point out that there are several streets here in Port Huron which are named after generals who served in the Civil War. (Union generals, that is. I believe that at the time those responsible for naming the streets were a little biased.)
If you are driving north on 10th street, after you cross the drawbridge and pass Glenwood Avenue and travel all the way up to Garfield St. most of the streets except Washington, Lincoln, Church, and Stanton are named after generals. Stanton was Governor of Michigan during the war years and a different Stanton was Secretary of War. Of course, two of the street names should be familiar to all of us.
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What I would like to do over the next few weeks is to present a short paragraph or two and tell a little about the generals that those streets are named after and give a little background on them. I will share some information as to their actual rank, where they served and, in some cases, where they met their fate. Hopefully after reader, as you go down 10th and read the street signs those names, it will remind you of another time in which this nation faced not only a crisis of conscience but also was willing to give their full measure to right a wrong that had plagued this nation since its founding. There wasn’t a household in this nation who didn’t lose a beloved member of their family; husband, father, son, uncle, or cousin because at that time the number of people living here in the United States compared to how many who served in the military was such that every family sent somebody to support the cause. Whether they were sent to save the union or defend state’s rights, both sides were willing to fight and even die to defend their beliefs.
This is a part of our history that cannot be removed by tearing down statues or memorials, considering that it was events like this that have shaped our nation and, in many ways, made it strong. I liken it to breaking an arm or a leg bone. When the area around the bone heals, it mends and forms a portion of extra material around the break that makes it stronger. Stronger to the point that it is next to impossible to break it in the same place.
May our nation, in spite of its many problems, look back and remember that we have been through a lot and if we can only put some of our differences aside and remind ourselves that we are first and foremost Americans, we will continue to make strides to build a better country for ourselves and also for our descendants.
Mark E. Pearson was born and raised in Kansas City, Mo. In 1970 he moved to Michigan where he met and married the girl of his dreams, Mary Lou Davis, together they have two sons. He attended Briercrest Bible Institute in Saskatchewan, Canada, and later received his associates degree in business from St. Clair Community College. He was a bookkeeper and worked in retail sales for 30 years and has spent the last fifteen years as a Jeweler at Coughlin’s Jewelers in St Clair, MI. He is a voracious reader of history and as a result of being an avid reader he began to write short stories and articles for editorial columns and magazines on current events and comparing and relating past events to current happenings.
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