Horsehead Lake History
Memory Lane...by Morris & Bob Andrews
Nathaniel Percy purchased the family farm in the 1870s from Arthur Hill and his brother, from Saginaw, for $1000. The farm consisted of Government lot #3 which was 46.25 acres, and lot #4, an additional 64.55 acres. Both lots were in section 22 township, 15 miles north of range 8 west (Martiny Township). Nathaniel was the fourth owner of the property after it was sold by the United States Government.
Hill started the United States Steamship Company. He was the first secretary of
the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Prior to 1900 he gave in excess of
one million dollars to the University of Michigan. The Collins Lumber
Company lumbered the original white pine from the property. They operated a
large sawmill on what is now Percy Flats employing in excess of 100 employees
for approximately 2 years in the late 1880’s. A narrow gage railroad
connected the mill with Mecosta where a major railroad carried lumber to
major cities. One lumber train left Mecosta each hour at the height of the white
pine harvest in this area. The white pine trees were cut by cross-cut saws at
shoulder height. As a result the stumps were 3 to 5 feet above the ground. The
stumps would later be cut off at ground level, put into the lake, and floated to
a mill located at the outlet where they were made into roof shingles.
Photos from the old Horsehead Lake Campground (now Hidden Harbor)
Courtesy of Greg Adams
Original cottage at Horsehead Lake Resort - 1938
Another view of the cottage as it was being worked on.
Front yard of cottage looking from lake.
Folks bathing a jeep at the swimming beach
Looking South toward West Bay
The Beach in the 1960's
TeePee Island before the Teepee.
Entrance to the HHL Resort
Beginning construction on the resort's log cabin.
Turn off of the country road to get to the resort... this is now the entry way to Hidden Harbor.
If you have any old photos from the lake that you'd like to share, please email them to Dom Theodore (see contact page).
Horsehead Lake Association
P.O. Box 344
Mecosta, MI 49332
Email: Information @ Horseheadlake.org
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