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November 27, 1987 - Image 48

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1987-11-27

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

LOOKING BACK

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V

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48

FRIDAY, NOV. 27, 1987

Continued from preceding page

544-8019

ALL SPECIALLY SALE PRICED

HOURS: M, 7 & Sat 10-6
W-F 10-9
Sun 12-5

Bath City

The steambath's sign reads in Yiddish, "Kosher" and "Healthy."

rheumatism and would go
every year. It made her feel
better. Every Sunday while
she was there my whole fami-
ly would go visit her. She was
very strict about keeping
kosher, and it was very impor-
tant to her."
"She liked the social
aspects of being there, the
baths, and the Sabbath ser-
vices. She'd always go to
them," remembers Dworkin.
"I remember going there in
the '20s. On a Sunday, it
seemed like every Jewish per-
son in Detroit was there.
When my fiance, who became
my first husband, and I got
engaged, we drove up Satur-
day night after Shabbat was
over to show my mother the
ring. It was such a thrill to be
able to drive out there to tell
her I was engaged."
Dworkin tried the baths
herself many times when she
was young. It was possible to
buy single tickets as well as
the series of 21.
"I'd take one whenever I got
the chance. They relaxed you.
They'd give you the bath and
put hot towels on your limbs.
It felt lovely."
Sundays in Mt. Clemens
would be spent having a pic-
nic in the park, visiting
friends and walking around.
There wasn't much for
children except for the park's
playground, the picnics, or
maybe a boat ride, but the
leisurely pace had its appeal
for many.
"There were concerts at the
hotels and at the park," says
Bess Glazier, an Oak Park
resident who visited her
mother and aunt in Mt.
Clemens, but was too young
according to her mother to try
the baths herself.
"We enjoyed going to the
park and playing on the
swings and slides. I did go on
some boat rides. I liked going
up there but hated the ride in

the car. We'd take a picnic
lunch with us."
The hotels were mostly
built in the later part of the
19th Century and some stood
until recent times. A 1920
guide to Mt. Clemens describ-
ed the Park Hotel and Bath-
House as "the handsomest
and the most extensively
patronized hostelry at this
resort . . . The new hotel (it
was rebuilt) is three stories in
height, above a high, well-
lighted and ventilated base-
ment; it has two hundred
guest rooms, in all of which
are stationary wash stands,
with hot and cold water.
Many of the best suites also
have private toilet and bath

MOMS .. .

"The dining room is 53 by
33 feet with a 16-foot ceiling
and without supporting posts
or columns to mar its beauty.
This elegant room is floored
with marble and has marble
wainscotting. It is estimated
that 350 guests can be dined
in this commodious and
beautifully decorated dining
room . . . Off from the hotel of-
fice is the reception room,
parlor, music-room, smoking
room, card room and barber
shop."
The Park had a large
elevator and a gymnasium,
bowling alleys, and a bar. To
add to its elegance, a flower
garden and fountain was con-
structed. There were plush
carpets, electric lights, steam
heating.
The Bath-House was also
built in the comfort and style
of the day, attracting
"theatrical people and the
wealthy." It was the social
center of Mt. Clemens, where
residents of the city held par-
ties and dances.
Other leading hotels includ-
ed the Avery House, the Hotel
Egnew, the Colonial, the

Continued on Page 50

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