Albion Historical Notebook

A SUNDAY SCHOOL PICNIC

A SUNDAY SCHOOL PICNIC

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August is the time for annual family-clan reunions with all the activities and the hot summer sun that goes with it. Similarly, for many years numerous Albion churches held “Sunday School picnics” for its members, particularly for the children.

August is the time for annual family-clan reunions with all the activities and the hot summer sun that goes with it. Similarly, for many years numerous Albion churches held “Sunday School picnics” for its members, particularly for the children. They would be loaded up in cars and go to a favorite park such as at Dudek’s along the Kalamazoo River towards Concord, or to Swains Lake Park and others.

A SUNDAY SCHOOL PICNIC - Albion Michigan

Some church members had farms where these outings were held. One such person was Delos D. Snyder (1844-1933) of a pioneer Albion family, whose farmhouse was at 73553 28 Mile Road (M-99) in South Albion between Homer and Albion. Delos was a member of our local Methodist Episcopal Church on E. Erie St., Albion’s largest congregation at the time.

From our Historical Notebook this week we present two photos, taken by photographer Frank Bennett sometime during the 1910s. The first shows several automobiles filled with children. They are lined up on E. Erie St. ready to make the excursion to South Albion to the Snyder farm. The caption translates, “Methodist Episcopal Sunday School Juniors Picnic “On the Way.” The second photo shows the large group of children in front of the Snyder farmhouse, along with their adult chaperons. Notice the hats the boys/men wore back then are different than the “baseball” caps that are worn today. The fact that there are American flags placed on the cars, and also patriotic bunting hanging from the Snyder porch in these photos, makes me think that this picnic could have been held on the 4th of July.

Nowadays, excursions are made to places like Cedar Point, or to a Detroit Tiger baseball game for the youth of a church. Back then however, an old-fashioned Sunday School picnic was just the thing to keep the youth entertained by featuring horseshoes, home-made ice cream, softball games, and other fun as well as lots of food. How many of our readers have ever been on a Sunday School Picnic?