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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Romeo in Macomb County, Michigan — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

Wooden Wheels

Romeo Grows with its Carriage Industry

 
 
Wooden Wheels Marker image. Click for full size.
By Joel Seewald, September 15, 2018
1. Wooden Wheels Marker
Inscription.
Romeo was a world of wheels, long before the automobile.
In the mid-1800s, a carriage industry developed here which was responsible for much of the prosperity of the Village of Romeo. This is still seen in the beautiful old homes built originally by carriage business owners. Local craftsmen built carriage frames, axles and bodies of wood. The village foundry shaped molten metal into carriage parts, such as carriage steps and axle spindles. As the automobile replaced carriage transportation in the early 1900s, the Romeo Foundry continued to thrive as suppliers of engine blocks for the popular Ford Model T.

You Auto Know
Romeo carriage businesses invented many new carriage features for better suspension, better axle placement, and better attachment to the horse.
 
Erected 2010 by MotorCities National Heritage Area, National Park Service.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the MotorCities National Heritage Area marker series.
 
Location. 42° 48.148′ N, 83° 0.868′ W. Marker is in Romeo, Michigan, in Macomb County. Marker is on West St. Clair Street west of Main Street, on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is on the west wall of
Upper Left Image image. Click for full size.
By Joel Seewald, September 15, 2018
2. Upper Left Image
Ketchum Brothers Peninsular Carriage and Wagon Manufactory, about 1870, on the north side of West St. Clair Street, across from what is now the Romeo Village Hall. This building later became Romeo's Detroit Urban Railway (streetcar) station. Photo courtesy of the Romeo Observer.
the Romeo Village Hall. Marker is at or near this postal address: 121 West St. Clair Street, Romeo MI 48065, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 5 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Electric Streetcars (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Village Park (about 300 feet away); From the Foundry Fires (about 300 feet away); Helen Starkweather (about 300 feet away); Village of Romeo (about 600 feet away); Many Tools and Many Tasks (approx. 0.2 miles away); Simpson Park Campground (approx. 1.4 miles away); Religious Society Church (approx. 4.9 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Romeo.
 
Categories. Industry & CommerceRoads & Vehicles
 
Lower Left Images image. Click for full size.
By Joel Seewald, September 15, 2018
3. Lower Left Images
Romeo foundry workers, about 1909. They made parts for carriages built in Romeo such as the cast carriage step, and later engine blocks for Ford Motor Company. Photo courtesy of the Romeo Observer.
Center Image image. Click for full size.
By Joel Seewald, September 15, 2018
4. Center Image
The first carriage made in Romeo, about 1850. Photo courtesy of the Romeo Observer.
Upper Right Image image. Click for full size.
By Joel Seewald, September 15, 2018
5. Upper Right Image
Road cart displayed in Romeo's Craig Blacksmith Museum. This cart type was patented and manufactured by Brabb & Smith in Romeo.
Middle Right Image image. Click for full size.
By Joel Seewald, September 15, 2018
6. Middle Right Image
Carriage company owner George Washington Brabb lived in this fine Italianate home on South Main Street in the 1800s. Photo courtesy of Richard Beringer.
Lower Right Image image. Click for full size.
By Joel Seewald, September 15, 2018
7. Lower Right Image
A Romeo carriage advertisement, about 1870. Image courtesy of the Romeo Observer.
Wooden Wheels Marker image. Click for full size.
By Joel Seewald, September 15, 2018
8. Wooden Wheels Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on September 17, 2018. This page originally submitted on September 16, 2018, by Joel Seewald of Madison Heights, Michigan. This page has been viewed 50 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. submitted on September 16, 2018, by Joel Seewald of Madison Heights, Michigan.
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