National Geographic : 1952 Mar
the Territorial legislature in 1817 "an Act to establish the Catholepistemiad, or University, of Michigania." ("Catholepistemiad," ab sent from dictionaries, was a "made" word meaning, roughly, "place for acquisi tion of a wide range of knowledge.") In 1821 the name was changed to University of Michigan, and in 1837 a gift of 40 acres of land sent the school to Ann Arbor (page 291). The University, with 17, 155 students enrolled in the fall of 1951, was the first major university west of the Appalachians to set up professional schools for the study of medicine (1850) and law (1859). More than half of all who ever have received Michigan Law School diplomas are still alive. X82 Drawn by Harry S. Oliver and Irvin E. Alleman Four Great Lakes Clasp Michigan in a 2,302-mile Embrace The State's shor fornia, Oregon, anc L.Le carripd mrnnr A research leader, Mich- ports. River and igan worked out a large- shipments cannot scale method for production States complete thi of RDX, World War II superexplosive. The late Dr. Max M. Peet of the Medical School developed "miraculous" surgery to relieve high blood pressure by operating on the sympathetic nerve supply to the kidneys and adrenal glands. With its new giant synchrotron that ener gizes electrons up to 300,000,000 volts, the University strives to learn more about the mysterious forces that hold together the sub nuclear particles composing all matter. Where the Republican Party Was Born West of Ann Arbor I stopped in Jackson, factory town fringed with parks. There I sought out the corner of West Franklin and 2d Streets to read a bronze tablet: "Here, under the oaks, July 6th, 1854, was born the Republican Party, destined in the throes of civil strife to abolish slavery, vindicate Democ racy and perpetuate the Union." President William Howard Taft dedicated the tablet in 1910. Gracious farmlands led to Lansing, the State capital, equidistant from Detroit and Lake Michigan. As I explored the high-ceil inged capitol, it was hard to comprehend that Lansing was a capital site suggested in jest. Michigan's 1835 constitution stated that the capital "shall be at Detroit ... until 1847, when it shall be permanently located by the legislature." Detroit, on the border, was felt vulnerable to invasion. e line exceeds Florida's and almost equals those of Cali dWashington combined. During wartime the five Great e tonnage than that sent abroad by all our salt-water :anal float ocean cargoes to Lake ports, but international reach maximum scope unless Canada and the United e deep-water St. Lawrence Seaway (opposite page). Legislators rejected one after another lower Michigan locality. Finally, in joking mood, someone proposed the wilderness township of Lansing. The legislators laughed-but for want of a better choice finally settled on it. So Michigan's seat of government moved to a frontier clearing with one log house and a sawmill (page 296). Today the capitol's 267-foot dome is over topped by near-by Olds Tower, 25 stories high (page 294). Here I sat at the desk of the late Ransom E. Olds, automotive pioneer, who died in August, 1950, at 86. Swinging in Mr. Olds's swivel chair, I looked out the window across Lansing's rooftops to the great Oldsmobile auto plant he brought into being. Among the first to build a practicable auto mobile (in 1896), Olds gave his name to the Oldsmobile and later his initials (R.E.O.) to the Reo. Early in the century, Olds was the world's largest motorcar producer, and "In My Merry Oldsmobile" was a theme song of the era. In Lansing I learned why Michigan is known as the Wolverine State. "There's no authentic record of a wolverine ever being seen or killed in Michigan," State game biologist F. W. Stuewer told me. "But in the early fur trade days Detroit shipped furs not only from Michigan but also from a wide reach of territory to the west and north.