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  • 27 Oct 2023 10:37 AM | Michelle Jones (Administrator)

    This brief message is one of gratitude and appreciation.

    Thank you, Vernacular Architecture Forum members for making VAF a great organization.

    Special thanks to all those past and present who serve on VAF committees and the board. The incredible knowledge, time and commitment to the organization is indispensable and deeply appreciated.

    As the fairly new President of VAF, I am fortunate to carry forward efforts initiated by my predecessors to ensure relevancy, a robust future and clear trajectory while aligning with our mission, bylaws, and non-profit best practices. This includes improving communication within VAF and to those outside the organization.

    During this last year, our Communications Committee has significantly increased our presence on social media (VAF Instagram) and our Membership Committee launched a survey for feedback on the 2023 conference in Plymouth (summary results in this issue). One of our next steps is to fill two roles outlined in our bylaws that will further and complement this success:

    VAN Editor and Web Editor. The announcements for both roles are described in separate posts. Please consider serving in one of these positions.

    Thank you, Michelle Jones for serving as the interim VAN editor for the last year!

    Best regards,

    Elaine Jackson-Retondo

    Vernacular Architecture President

  • 27 Oct 2023 8:54 AM | Michelle Jones (Administrator)

    Founding of the Vernacular Architecture Newsletter (VAN) coincided with the nascent years of VAF. Hard copy format gave way to digital nearly ten years ago. With the forty-fifth anniversary around the corner, we are looking for a new editor to refresh and reestablish VAN as a quarterly publication.  If you are interested in the VAN editor position, please send a brief statement of interest and resume to president@vafweb.org by January 15, 2024. Do not hesitate to email any questions to the same address.

    Applicants should have knowledge of the VAF and its mission regarding the built environment, excellent writing, editing, and communication skills, as well as facility with social media.

    VAN Editor:

    • serves a 3-year term, volunteer position (renewable once); 
    • is an appointed Board Member;
    • is in charge of producing quarterly newsletter (4 issues a year);
    • solicits and edits short articles, images, highlights, regular & special features, announcements, and bibliography;
    • works with bibliographer;
    • reviews draft with president; 
    • distributes newsletter by email to members.

  • 27 Oct 2023 8:50 AM | Michelle Jones (Administrator)

    Our website may be the first source that non-members access to learn about VAF and it should be members’ go to source for up-to-date information. In an effort to address some of the critical needs, the Governance Committee is currently reviewing the structure of the website and to identify organizational information that should be added and pages in need of updating.  As website editor you would have an opportunity to strengthen VAF’s website as an informative and dynamic communication tool. If you are interested in serving as Website Editor, please send a brief statement of interest and resume to president@vafweb.org by January 15, 2024. Also feel free to email any questions to the same address.

    Applicants should have knowledge of the VAF and its mission regarding the built environment, experience managing web content, a propensity for detail as well as excellent writing, editing, and communication skills.

    Website Editor:

    • serves a 3-year term, volunteer position (renewable once); 
    • is an appointed Board Member;
    • a member of the Communications Committee;
    • keeps website content current
    • develops a regular monthly schedule for updating website content; 
    • shares submission deadlines with board and committee chairs;
    • edits submissions as needed;
    • coordinates design and organizational changes to the website with VAF's website support consultant;
    • works with Executive Committee, if proposing significant content changes;
    • collaborates and coordinates with the Communications Committee as needed.

  • 26 Oct 2023 11:30 AM | Michelle Jones (Administrator)

    Ebram arrived late, bursting with energy. He and his team were recording an oral history and the community member had offered such a rich account of her childhood in Bellevue that they could not pull themselves away. I was already at the dinner table feasting on steamed shrimp and learning from students about their experience of the field school. A Women and Gender Studies PhD had some experience with oral histories but the long days measuring floor plans was entirely new. With her major in community development from Howard, another student reported that the field school was providing a set of tools she might use in her future work fostering healthy African American communities. The shy—and very smart—undergraduate student with a double major in anthropology and environmental studies saw immediately the benefit of a cultural landscapes lens and was really turned on to the idea that the living community can also be an historical resource. The conversation gently meandered among the students, each a bit cautious as they shared their experience with me, a total stranger. For most—but not all—of these students, this was their first year participating in the Mellon Foundation-funded “Black Life in Bellevue Field School,” run by Mike Chiarappa and Janet Sheridan in partnership with the organizing partners of the Bellevue Passages Museum. The field school’s primary goal was to document this historically Black waterfront—and waterman’s—community on the Maryland shores of the Chesapeake Bay to generate content for the intended museum. The summer of 2022 had focused more on mapping and building documentation, meeting the community, and spending a lot of time listening. This summer had continued the documentation work, but with a little more trust from the community, pivoted to include oral histories and more robust community engagement. During my visit near the end of the field school, conversations with community partners made clear that the intended goals of honoring local history and serving the community were being met. The field school had given the community the needed catalyst to move forward with the museum and to begin the process of applying for designation as an historic district.

    While I met with Mike and Janet, and with community partners very pleased with the work, it was that dinner with the students that left the biggest impression. Ebram had bounded in with his two partners just behind, grabbed a plate of food, and sat at the other end of the table. Discerning the arc of the conversation, he waited for the appropriate moment to speak. Trained as a landscape architect, he came to the field school confident that he could offer his skills in reading and documenting the landscape. But he was entirely unprepared for the work of listening to community members, documenting unarchived histories, and learning to see the landscape through their eyes, with their historic sensibilities. This landscape was more than physical, ecological. It was also historical, cultural and social. In correspondence since the completion of the school, he described it as “transformational…[reminding me] that there is value in the vernacular.” “I am more motivated than ever,” he wrote, “to enter the conversation and contribute to moving the field of preservation in the direction of conservation and stewardship.” As he completed his summer and pivoted into his first year of the PhD, he now took with him a commitment to the patient work of earning trust and listening well. Even more, he was deeply moved by the idea that this was a community-led initiative. “I learned that we must go back and engage the landscape and its inhabitants to interact with ancestral wisdom, and once there, the wise will show you the way forward, but with words, so we must listen closely and meet them in their memories with maps.” While his previous professional training centered him as the expert, he found deeply humbling, and very moving, the idea that his role was to serve the community. Poetically, he argued, “I’ve been birthed into the old.” This student dinner reminded me of the importance of this work: of partnering with Black communities to elevate important but under-recognized cultural landscapes, and to train students into the commitments of careful documentation and responsible engagement with the communities that steward cultural landscapes.

    Soon after I left, Jim Buckley arrived on site and soon after his return he shared that he “was struck yet again by the importance of the site, which is being lost to new development, and the impact of our students, which is tremendous. I happened to arrive on a day when a state commission on environmental justice and sustainability had convened in Bellevue to hear about the work of the VAF Mellon Field School. Each student presented some part of what they had learned about the project to the commission, but they were encouraged by the field school instructors to express themselves in their own way. As a result, their offerings included not just measured drawings and oral histories, but a poem about Bellevue, a fictional letter from one of the historic figures who had lived in that community, and paens to the trees and wild animals that have co-habited the site with the human community over time. One student wove an incredible story for us about deed research on a particularly interesting parcel, with an enthusiasm for ownership transfers and lot line adjustments I have never heard before. It seems to me that these students will be a transformational force in our field for some time to come!”

    As the Bellevue Field School completed its second season, the John’s Island Preservation Field School finished its first. Run by Jon Marcoux and Amalia Leifeste from Clemson University in partnership with the Avery Research Center for African American History and Culture and the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor, the field school began by training students, many of whom had direct ties to the community, to read a historic landscape, undertake archival research, and also to listen to and document respectfully various community voices. This field school centered its work around two very important but neglected the early and mid-twentieth century Sea Island African American community hubs: the Moving Starr Hall and the Progressive Club. Both were sites of Black community life in the context of Jim Crow South Carolina. The field school included workshops on historic preservation, archival research, and architectural history documentation including measured drawings, laser scanning, photogrammetry, and GIS. I had the pleasure of visiting the field school in the closing week and had the great delight of spending the afternoon in the local public library listening to the students deliver the products of their work. Each student brought a different approach, asking different questions of the cultural landscape and its history. As with the students from Bellevue, these students came from a wide variety of backgrounds but their final presentations made clear that they had come to embrace the core commitments of cultural landscape research and documentation.

    The third and final field school will be launched next summer by Jobie Hill, who was a contributing member of the education team at both the Bellevue and Johns Island field schools. Jobie’s school centers on the documentation of slave quarter sites at adjacent plantations in central Virginia, but, as with the other two schools, a close sense of partnership with the living descendants of the buildings’ historic inhabitants. Taking a long view of these buildings through time, the field school seeks to understand them not just as quarters for the enslaved, but also their use through Reconstruction and Jim Crow. The field school will also grapple with the questions of best uses for the buildings and their landscapes in the future.

  • 26 Oct 2023 11:26 AM | Michelle Jones (Administrator)

    The 2023 Vernacular Architecture Forum Annual Meeting took place in Plymouth, MA and by all accounts it was a great success! From First Period houses to cranberry bogs to Martha’s Vineyard, along with a special banquet that featured delicious lobster, the four-day event had something to please everyone. The conference was only the second one in person after COVID forced the organization to hold into an online versions in 2020 and 2021, and everyone was ready to ride the tour buses to new adventures.

    The opening session featured a reception at the Pilgrim Hall Museum (designed by Alexander Parris) followed by a keynote address and the annual awards ceremony at the nineteenth century Church of the Pilgrimage at Town Square.

    The next morning, buses headed in three directions bright and early. Members who headed to Martha’s Vineyard with tour leader Myron Stachiw had to take several forms of transportation in addition to the ferry to take in all of the sites, which included maritime, tribal, religious, and agricultural landscapes.

    Claire Dempsey and Jeff Klee organized a tour de force worthy of Abbott Lowell Cummings with a tour through a number of early structures between Plymouth and Hingham, including “The Old Ordinary” (aka the Andrews House), Cushing Farmstead, and Old Ship Meetinghouse. Many of these buildings had recent dendrochronology that helped tour-goers  understand the chronology of construction, but all anyone could talk about afterward was the amazing Sampson-White Joiner Shop, a recently discovered treasure that marks “the only 18th-century woodworking shop to survive in the United States on its original site with its early fittings still in place.” There was a lot of excitement in seeing such a workshop still intact!

    Sally McMurry wowed everyone on the cranberry bog tour with local interpreters who explained the delicate process of growing a cranberry crop, and she introduced us to a member of a Finnish farming family who switched on an ancient “cranberry bouncer” machine that sorted the good from the bad. In the town of Wareham, we saw a cool 1930s mural of the cranberry harvesting process and the amazing Tremont Nail Works, which was everything an industrial architecture fan could want. The trip ended with a community event in a historic Cape Verdean neighborhood, complete with a tiny gospel tabernacle.

    Friday's self-guided tours through Plymouth itself featured many interesting sites. Word quickly spread among those wandering about town that they shouldn’t miss the Harlow House, a quirky Arts and Crafts bungalow with a suitably quirky owner (who could forget the eerie music playing on his piano-roll automatic organ?) and the 17th C Churchill House, where a dozen seamstresses were busy creating a set of modern-day Bayeux Tapestries for the history of Plymouth (don’t ask…). Plymouth town center has many delights, including the tiny Howland House of 1713 and the majestic 1754 home of Edward Winslow, whose career as Royal Collector of Customs ended abruptly with all that fuss around 1776. Many of the houses we toured had well-documented second and third lives after their initial design. A special treat was the Maybury House, which lead conference organizer Ritchie Garrison and his wife have been carefully restoring to its original condition as a mid-nineteenth century middle class abode in a picturesque garden setting.

    Even the guidebook was special, thanks to the editing skills of Ian Stephenson – it was delivered in advance and the available PDF format suited many of our members on the move.

    Saturday’s paper sessions had many stimulating presentations, including a fascinating plenary event with representatives from local institutions discussing issues of BIPOC architecture and landscape, and a screening of the Buchanan Award-winning documentary about Barry Farm” (see separate article). The unexpected main course of whole lob-stah at the banquet, topped off by Sarah Fayen Scarlett’s wonderful preview of next year’s event in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, was the perfect ending of a phenomenal week!

    VAF can’t thank the organizers enough for their outstanding work: Ritchie Garrison, Jeff Klee, Sally McMurry, Myron Stachiw, and Ian Stephenson, along with a cast of thousands. And of course, everything was managed by our phenomenal conference coordinator Michelle Jones. It was a memorable VAF conference!

    submitted by James Buckley

  • 26 Oct 2023 8:35 AM | Michelle Jones (Administrator)

    In September 2023, VAF distributed a survey to members who attended the conference in Plymouth, MA this last May. The short survey offered multiple-choice and more detailed open-ended questions. In addition to general perceptions of the conference, VAF collected demographic data, involvement with the organization, employment, age, gender, and racial self-identification.

    More than one-hundred respondents provided a broad sense of members’ experience at the conference and detailed suggestions for the forthcoming conference in 2024. Over 60 percent of respondents said they were very satisfied with the conference, 30 percent satisfied, and under 10 percent somewhat satisfied. Over 70 percent of the members were very satisfied with the guidebook provided by VAF conference organizers and many wished the text was available a week prior to the meeting. Overall, respondents most enjoyed the bus tours, followed by walking tours, networking opportunities, and paper sessions. Some members noted they would like more options for affordable accommodations and vegetarian and gluten-free options. Also noteworthy was a desire for greater and accurate representation of Indigenous and POC histories.

    Over 50 percent of respondents are in the 55 and over age group, with members in other age groups coming in at 15 percent (45-54), 18 percent (35-44), and 7 percent (25-34).

    Half of the respondents self-identified as female, 48 percent as male, and remaining respondents preferred to not answer the question. Over 90 percent of the members self-identified as white non-Hispanic or Latinx, with one person selecting Hispanic or Latinx and another as Black or African American.

    Over 45 percent of respondents work in academia, 20 percent in state, federal, or municipal government, 16 percent work as consultants, 6 percent in museums, and 14 percent identified as self-employed.

    Responses to the question about forms of involvement with VAF resulted in a representation of robust engagement, with members selecting multiple roles as members.

    VAF plans to disseminate additional surveys covering topics like the 2024 conference, publication efforts, and membership engagement. Please share your thoughts and shape the future of our organization!

    Submitted by Vyta Privo

  • 20 Oct 2023 11:29 AM | Michelle Jones (Administrator)

    One of the highlights of the Plymouth conference was the screening of the documentary that won this year’s Buchanan Award: “Barry Farm: Community, Land, and Justice in Washington, DC.” This documentary explores the memories that accompany an important site in Washington, DC, from slavery to public housing to recent urban renewal. We were lucky enough to have at the screening longtime VAF member Amber Edwards, who is both one of the makers of this film and an active participant in trying to preserve community memories at Barry Farm. Amber discussed both the site’s history and the making of the film, which can be viewed free online at this website: https://bfnadocs.org/barry-farm. Congrats to Amber and the whole team on creating this wonderful narrative about African American life in our nation’s capital!

    Sumitted by James Buckley

  • 19 Oct 2023 11:29 AM | Michelle Jones (Administrator)

    Wendan Wang, PhD student, University Of Chinese Academy Of Social Sciences, Visiting Graduate Researcher, UCLA

    It was a great surprise to be able to participate in VAF 2023, just like winning the lottery. My advisor Prof. Nair forwarded several notifications of VAF in January, because I was new to the USA and had no relevant papers, I thought I was not qualified to participate in the conference. Therefore, I did not pay much attention to it until the evening of the 29th, when I received an email that the deadline for Awards and Prize applications was approaching, and I clicked on the link to apply for it. VAF offers an “Access Award” for first-time attendees, which breaks many of the “stereotypes” I had about academic conferences with its open and inclusive theme and easy application process. It also means that I can be deeply involved in the VAF as a pure “observer”, which is perfect for me! I rushed to organize my required documents and submit my application. To be honest, I am not good at finishing a task at the very last moment, but I have a vague hunch that something good might come out of this application. In the end, I was lucky enough to get the “ticket”.Row of wooden cottages (author’s photo)

    Row of wooden cottages (author’s photo)

    My current research topic is “Chinese Buildings and Settlements of the Neolithic Age”. In terms of architectural history research, this topic lacks the support of historical materials, objects, customs, and specific research theories. I am always looking for possible “parallels” in other potential related researches to try to make some kind of connection to complete my research. Hence I would keep an eye out for parts of the tour and presentations that would inspire my research. The pre-conference local tours were one of VAF’s the most unique and well-received features. I was impressed by the wooden cottage in Martha’s Vineyard and the reconstructed English Village in the Plimoth Patuxet Museum. From the development of tents to the later compact, spacious, and specially decorated cabins (Photo 1), I found the history of the wooden cottage's form to be amazing, and without understanding the process and meaning behind it, just observing and extrapolating the final form in front of us, archaeologists can come up with a variety of “self-proved” explanations, but they are like “blind men touching an elephant”, which can be one-sided. But with specific records, the exaggerated design of the gableboards, the narrow spacing between houses, and other “strange phenomena” can be logically clear and coherent like a string of pearl bracelets. The English Village in Plimoth Patuxet Museum gave me a lot of ideas for reconstruction. For example, windows reminded me of the window remains discovered in Gaocheng taixi (藁城台西遺址) (Photo 2), and the location and design of the stove also reminded me of the remains of a fire without a hearth pit in the house site (Photo 3), etc. These “coincidentally consistent” designs made me feel both interesting and a little regretful, it would be better if these were the original.

    The window of a wooden house from the 17th century English village (author’s photo)

    The paper & poster sessions were excellent. However, due to my lack of relevant background knowledge, I did not receive special benefits from all reports. As a result, I remain centered on my research interests, drawing inspiration from houses where I could see characteristics of earlier settlements. What impressed me the most was Prof. Matthew Teismann’s research on traditional house in the Bawömataluo area. That house is so structurally and decoratively elaborate that I would call it a wooden version of Howl’s Moving Castle. When it comes to such elevated buildings, I always think of the Hemudu site (河姆渡遺址), followed by water-related keywords such as river and rainy. But Prof. Teismann further introduced that these buildings were not at the riverside, while on the hill and the street, and that piles served as waterproofing. I will be curious to see how the design of the upper floors of the pile dwellings will differ from area to area. Another presentation I was interested in was Prof. Stella Nair's research on the Inca wars, women, and the origins of houses. She was a fantastic speaker. Her discovery had to do with women's participation in the camping of military camps, where female construction teams would accompany the army to pitch their tents. This sparked my thoughts on the topic of gender in builders. In addition, Zhang Tian told the story of the lawsuit of modern Chinese construction teams in his presentation, which was like a "prequel" to the history of modern Chinese architecture before the architects came on the scene, unlike the study of building technology, which focused on the human relations in the process of building construction. The latter two reports provided me with a novel perspective for my research.

    The kitchen area of a wooden house from the 17th century English village (author’s photo)

    I enjoyed the friendly and pleasant social atmosphere of these days. I will remember the chance encounter at the corner of the church, table joining in the bar, the sunset on the cruise ship, the way the capsule coffee machine worked, the beautiful scenery from the Plimoth Patuxet Museum to the hotel, the fine food at the Thai restaurant, the chat after the banquet, and the late-night sudden downpour, etc. The people, the views, the food, the stories, all of these will become the flashpoints of my visiting journey.

    I love Plymouth. A few weeks ago, some friends visited Boston, and I warmly recommended Plymouth to them. “You can find a seaside café to have a brunch, a bench to gaze at the sea, or a second-hand shop to hunt out interesting goods. There are a lot of historical buildings in this area, which is very suitable for city walk.”

  • 18 Oct 2023 7:00 PM | Michelle Jones (Administrator)

    On June 24, the Chesapeake VAFer received a tour of the former Aquia Quarries that supplied the stone for both the White House and the US Capitol and a number of historic buildings where Aquia stone was utilized in its construction. The tour was provided by Jerrilynn and Rick MacGregor, respectively the historian and former president of the Stafford County Historical Society and experts on the topic. Aquia freestone may well be the definitive element in this region’s vernacular architecture. It is believed to have been used architecturally from at least the 1660s to the 1970s and it is found in a variety of structures spread over a wide geographical area. Freestone was easily quarried and worked by nearly anyone who possessed even the most rudimentary agricultural tools; thus, it quickly became popular for foundations, chimneys, steps, and gravestones.

    Chesapeake Chapter at Aquia Quarries (photo submitted)

    From there, the group went to the nearby Concord, a second quarter of the eighteenth-century hall-parlor house that has been in the MacGregor family since the 1850s. Concord is located in the heart of Stafford’s eighteenth-century industrial area, close to Accokeek Iron Furnace. The tract included at least five quarry pits and three landings on Aquia Creek where stone was picked up by scows or ships. These pits likely provided the stone used to construct the chimneys on the house.

    Chesapeake Chapter at Concord (photo submitted)

    Next was the Robertson-Towson house, a ca. 1815 ruin built of Aquia freestone. The house is one of but a few buildings in Stafford that was constructed of blocks of freestone as opposed to stone rubble. The building was of a simple side-passage design with a hall and one room on each floor, and remained in the Towson family until at least 1999, though it was abandoned in the mid-twentieth century.

    The final stop was the Aquia Church, an impressive and well-preserved 1750s brick structure with Aquia stone embellishments. Construction of this magnificent building commenced in 1751 and was completed in 1757. William Copein (1730-1805) was the master mason of this two-story, open span Cruciform design building, laid up with brick and trimmed with finely worked Aquia freestone. It is considered one of finest colonial-era buildings in the United States.

    Carl Lounsberry with a VAF Tote on Aquia Tour (photo submitted) 

  • 18 Oct 2023 1:50 PM | Michelle Jones (Administrator)

    North of the Northwoods: From Mines to Motels on Michigan’s Lake Superior, June 12-15m 

    Keweenaw, Michigan

    In June 2024, VAF members will venture “North of the Northwoods” to Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula. Known as the “Copper Country,” this three-county area on the southern shore of Lake Superior features buildings and landscapes that tell stories of copper mining boom and bust, immigration, urban growth, industrial labor, as well as post-industrial patterns of recovery, reinvention, and re-interpretation. The region is home to the Keweenaw National Historical Park and Michigan Technological University, whose program in Industrial Heritage and Archaeology has been studying the region’s built environment for over thirty years. Historic buildings featured on the tours date from the 1850s prospecting era, through the height of industrialization when the region supported sizable cities, to the rise of tourism with the Civilian Conservation Corps and post-War automobile travel. Issues of environmental and cultural sustainability will feature prominently as we visit Finnish-American farmstead sites, Keweenaw Bay Indian Community landscapes, post-industrial downtowns, and Superfund remediation sites. 

    Conference attendees will stay in Houghton, Michigan on the beautiful Portage Waterway and attend paper sessions at Michigan Technological University. Everyone will do the same tour on Thursday to explore the story of copper mining, and then choose between two tour options on Friday. Tour attendees will all enjoy time on Lake Superior’s shores. The conference planning committee is also working with heritage partners to offer additional tours and site visits on Wednesday and Sunday. 

    Explore the U.P.

    The Keweenaw Peninsula is part of Michigan’s beautiful Upper Peninsula—the “U.P.”! Once you come north of the northwoods you might consider extending your stay! This region offers incredible opportunities for outdoor recreation such as mountain biking, backpacking, camping, kayaking, ATV trail riding, cycling, and much more. The Copper Harbor Trails Club consistently gets ranked among the top ten mountain biking destinations in the country, and if you’ve always wanted to visit Isle Royale National Park, the boat leaves from Houghton. Check out Visit Keweenaw for more vacation ideas. Seriously, once you get here, it’s worth your time to explore more!  

    Advanced Planning for Travel

    It does take a little extra effort to get to the Keweenaw so we encourage you to plan early and consider making it into an early summer vacation or research trip!

    By Plane

    Houghton County Memorial Airport (CMX) has two flights a day on United from Chicago O’Hare. United *might* consider adding an additional flight for us so we’ll keep you posted! CMX is an easy ten minute drive by taxi or Lyft from the conference hotel, but we will run van shuttles between the airport and downtown Houghton. There is an Enterprise/Hertz rental office at the airport, but you will need to reserve early.

    Other airports 

    Marquette, MI (MQT) — 110 miles away — American and Delta

    Iron Mountain, MI — 120 miles — Delta

    Rhinelander/Oneida County, WI (RHI) — 130 miles — Delta

    Green Bay, WI — 220 miles — American, Delta, Sun Country, Frontier, United  

    Duluth, MN — 230 miles — United, Delta, Sun Country

    Minneapolis/St. Paul — 375 miles — many airlines…

    Milwaukee — 335 miles — many airlines…

    By Car

    Houghton is a 6 hour drive from Minneapolis/St. Paul, Milwaukee, or Madison; 8 hours from Chicago; 4 hours from Green Bay; 5 hours from Mackinac City; 6 hours from Traverse City; 10 hours from Detroit and Ann Arbor. 

    By Bus

    Indian Trails runs an overnight bus from Milwaukee to Hancock, MI and Michigan Tech’s campus. 

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