Just about everyone has gone to the beach at some point in their life.

The beach means many different things to many people:
Sun bathing
Making out
Ogling the girls
Eyeing the guys
Watching the sun set on the horizon

In other words, it's a day away from EVERYthing and a few hours to just be mindless with an afternoon or evening of stress-free entertainment.

A Michigan beach doesn't have to be a major one, like the ones on the endless shores of our Great Lakes. There are plenty of closer inland lakes, ponds, lagoons, rivers...most anywhere there's water there's usually a place to hang out alongside.

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Now the question: did Michiganders from over 120 years ago do the same things at the beach as we did/do? They sure did...but the attire was different. A swimsuit for a guy could be a whole body suit from shin to neck, but regular bathing shorts for men started a lot earlier than bathing suits for the ladies. No bikinis, no two-pieces...going wayyy back, women wore outfits that looked like petticoats, knickers, and little bathing caps. Practically EVERYthing was covered up.

The gallery below shows fifty photos of Michigan beach-goers and the things they did from 1900 to 1955. And you'll see - aside from the fashions - their antics are not so different from the ones we do now.

Michigan At The Beach: 1900-1955


Hot Air Ballooning, Early 1900s

Ice Skating In Michigan

Old One-Room Schoolhouses & High Schools

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