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50 Essential Michigan History Books

The following list of 50 essential works of Michigan history was selected by a team of noted historians assembled by the Library of Michigan.

Armour, David A. and Keith R.Widder. At the Crossroads: Michilimackinac During the American Revolution. Mackinac Island, MI: Mackinac Island State Park Commission, 1986.

Bogue, Margaret Beattie. Fishing the Great Lakes: An Environmental History, 1783-1933. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 2000.

Brehm, Victoria, ed. The Women's Great Lakes Reader. Duluth, MN: Holy Cow! Press, 1998.

Buley, R. Carlyle. The Old Northwest: Pioneer Period, 1815-1840. 2 vols. Indianapolis: Indiana Historical Society, 1950.

Carson, Gerald. Cornflake Crusade. New York: Rinehart, 1957.

Catton, Bruce. Waiting for the Morning Train: An American Boyhood. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1987.

Cleland, Charles E. Rites of Conquest: The History and Culture of Michigan's Native Americans. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1992.

Clifton, James A., George L. Cornell, and James M. McClurken. People of the Three Fires: The Ottawa, Potawatomi and Ojibway of Michigan. Grand Rapids, MI: Grand Rapids Inter-Tribal Council, 1986.

Clive, Alan. State of War: Michigan in World War II. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1979.

Darden, Joe T. Detroit, Race and Uneven Development. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1987.

Dunbar, Willis F. All Aboard! A History of Railroads in Michigan. Grand Rapids, MI: W.B. Eerdmans Pub. Co., 1969.

Dunbar, Willis F. and George S. May. Michigan: A History of the Wolverine State. 3rd rev. ed. Grand Rapids, MI: W. B. Eerdmans Pub. Co., 1995.

Dunnigan, Brian Leigh. Frontier Metropolis: Picturing Early Detroit, 1701-1838. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 2001.

Eckert, Kathryn Bishop. Buildings of Michigan. New York: Oxford University Press, 1993.

Fine, Sidney. "Expanding The Frontiers of Civil Rights": Michigan, 1948-1968. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 2000.

Fine, Sidney. Frank Murphy. 3 vols.Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1975-1984.

Fine, Sidney. Sit-down: The General Motors Strike of 1936-1937. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1969.

Fine, Sidney. Violence in the Model City: The Cavanagh Administration, Race Relations, and the Detroit Riot of 1967. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1989.

Formisano, Ronald P. The Birth of Mass Political Parties in Michigan, 1827-1861. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1971.

Gilpin, Alec R. The Territory of Michigan, 1805-1837. East Lansing: Michigan State University Press, 1970.

Gilpin, Alec R. The War of 1812 in the Old Northwest. East Lansing: Michigan State University Press, 1958.

Gray, Susan E. The Yankee West: Community Life on the Michigan Frontier. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1996.

Halsey, John, ed. and Michael Stafford, assoc. ed. Retrieving Michigan's Buried Past: The Archeology of the Great Lakes State. Bloomfield Hills, MI: Cranbrook Institute of Science, 1999.

Holli, Melvin G. Reform in Detroit: Hazen S. Pingree and Urban Politics. New York: Oxford University Press, 1969.

Hyde, Charles K. and colored photographs by Ann and John Mahan. The Northern Lights: Lighthouses of the Upper Great Lakes. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1995.

Jager, Ronald. Eighty Acres: Elegy for a Family Farm. Boston: Beacon Press, 1990.

Karamanski, Theodore J. Deep Woods Frontier: A History of Logging in Northern Michigan. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1989.

Katzman, David M. Before the Ghetto: Black Detroit in the Nineteenth Century. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1973.

Kestenbaum, Justin L., ed. The Making of Michigan, 1820-1860: A Pioneer Anthology. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1990.

Kilar, Jeremy W. Michigan's Lumbertowns: Lumbermen and Laborers in Saginaw, Bay City, and Muskegon, 1870- 1905. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1990.

Klunder, Willard Carl. Lewis Cass and the Politics of Moderation. Kent, OH: Kent State University Press, 1996.

Lankton, Larry D. Cradle to Grave: Life, Work, and Death at the Lake Superior Copper Mines. New York: Oxford University Press, 1991.

Lewis, David L. The Public Image of Henry Ford: An American Folk Hero and His Company. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1976.

Lichtenstein, Nelson. The Most Dangerous Man in Detroit: Walter Reuther and the Fate of American Labor. New York: Basic Books, 1995.

Mason, Philip P. Rumrunning and the Roaring Twenties: Prohibition on the Michigan-Ontario Waterway. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1995.

May, George S. A Most Unique Machine: The Michigan Origins of the American Automobile Industry. Grand Rapids, MI: W. E. Eerdmans Pub. Co., 1974.

Nevins, Allan and Frank E. Hill. Ford. 3 vols. New York: Scribner, 1954-1963.

Peckham, Howard H. Pontiac and the Indian Uprising. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1994.

Romig, Walter. Michigan Place Names: The History of the Founding and the Naming of More Than Five Thousand Past and Present Michigan Communities. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1986.

Sugrue, Thomas J. The Origins of the Urban Crisis: Race and Inequality in Postwar Detroit. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1996.

Tanner, Helen Hornbeck, ed. Atlas of Great Lakes Indian History. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1987.

Thomas, Richard W. Life for Us Is What We Make It: Building Black Community in Detroit, 1915-1945. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1992.

Thompson, Mark L. Steamboats and Sailors of the Great Lakes. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1991.

Thurner, Arthur W. Strangers and Sojourners: A History of Michigan's Keweenaw Peninsula. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1994.

Vander Hill, C. Warren. Settling the Great Lakes Frontier: Immigration to Michigan, 1837-1924. Lansing: Michigan Historical Commission, 1970.

Vinyard, JoEllen McNergney. For Faith and Fortune: The Education of Catholic Immigrants in Detroit, 1805-1925. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1998.

Weeks, George. Stewards of the State: The Governors of Michigan. 2nd rev. ed. Detroit: Detroit News; Ann Arbor: Historical Society of Michigan, 1991.

White, Richard. The Middle Ground: Indians, Empires, and Republics in the Great Lakes Region, 1650-1815. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1991.

Woodford, Arthur M. This Is Detroit, 1701-2001. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 2001.

Zunz, Olivier. The Changing Face of Inequality: Urbanization, Industrial Development, and Immigrants in Detroit, 1880-1920. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1982.

The panel of reviewers who selected this list includes Dr. William M.Anderson, Director of the Department of History, Arts and Libraries; Dr. Frank Boles, Director of the Clarke Historical Library at Central Michigan University; Sandra Clark, Director of the Michigan Historical Center; Dr. Brian Dunnigan, Curator for the William L. Clements Library at the University of Michigan; Dr. Sidney Fine, Professor Emeritus of History at the University of Michigan; Dr. Charles Hyde, Director of the Great Lakes Series for the Department of History at Wayne State University; Dr. Larry Lankton, Professor of Social Science at Michigan Technological University; Dr. Russell Magnaghi, Professor of History at Northern Michigan University; Dr. Philip P.Mason, Distinguished Professor of History at Wayne State University; Larry Massie, Historian and Storyteller from Allegan; Robert M.Money, Professor of History at Lake Superior State University; Gordon Olson, City Historian for Grand Rapids Public Library; Randy Riley, Special Collections Manager for the Library of Michigan; Dr. Roger L. Rosentreter, Editor of Michigan History magazine; Dr. Jo Ellen Vinyard, Professor of History at Eastern Michigan University; Larry Wagenaar, Director of the Historical Society of Michigan; Dr. Robert M. Warner, Professor Emeritus of History and Information Studies at the University of Michigan; Dr. Benjamin C.Wilson, Director of Africana Studies at Western Michigan University.

Updated 12/09/2002