Near Saugatuck in Allegan County, Michigan — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
Chicago inventor and businessman Dorr Felt built this house as a summer home for his wife, Agnes. Felt held numerous patents, mostly notably for the Comptometer, the first machine to do complex calculations. In 1919 Felt purchased more than 750 acres of land here and named it Shore Acres Farm. The family stayed in a farmhouse on the property until 1928, when this house, designed by Frank P. Allen and Son of Grand Rapids, was completed. The estate had extensive gardens, orchards, cornfields, a dairy, vineyards, and a small zoo that was open to the public. Agnes Felt died two months after the house was finished, and Dorr died two years later. The Feltsí daughters and grandchildren owned the estate until 1949 when they sold it to an Augustinian order of the Catholic Church.
The Dorr Felt Estate became the St. Augustine Catholic Seminary preparatory school in 1949. The mansion served as a chapel and housed priests and students. In 1962 the Augustinian order built a school and leased the house to Dominican cloistered nuns. The State of Michigan bought the property in 1977, using the house as a state police post and converting the school into the Saugatuck Dunes Correctional Facility. In 1995 the state sold forty-four acres, including the house and the prison buildings, to
Erected 2006 by Michigan Historical Commission - Michigan Historical Center. (Marker Number S697.)
Marker series. This marker is included in the Michigan Historical Commission marker series.
Location. 42° 41.817′ N, 86° 11.633′ W. Marker is near Saugatuck, Michigan, in Allegan County. Marker can be reached from Shore Acres Drive 0.2 miles west of 138th Avenue. Touch for map. Marker is located west of Shore Acres Township Park. Marker is at or near this postal address: 6597 138th Avenue, Saugatuck MI 49453, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Laketown Township Hall (approx. 2.5 miles away); All Saints Episcopal Church / Gordon W. Lloyd (approx. 2.8 miles away); First Congregational Church (approx. 2.8 miles away); Reed's Livery (approx. 2.9 miles away); Singapore, Michigan Saugatuck Engine House (approx. 3 miles away); The Allegan Road (approx. 3 miles away); Welcome to River Bluff Park (approx. 3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Saugatuck.
Also see . . . The Felt Estate - Historic Home & Gardens. Official website of the Friends of the Felt Estate. Includes historical photographs of the mansion. (Submitted on May 12, 2014.)
Categories. • Notable Buildings •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on May 12, 2014, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas. This page has been viewed 331 times since then and 40 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. submitted on May 12, 2014, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas.