Tag Archives: Kilmanagh

Saving A Great Thumb Icon – Kilmanagh General Store


One of the roadside treats for me when I come up the Thumb on Fridays after work is to go through the tiny village of Kilmanagh. The iconic general store and vintage gas pump  are always worth a slow roll to see what has changed.



However time has taken its toll on the 1870 general store that sports one of the last 1800’s storefront facades that was common in that time. The Building and Zoning Department has deemed the porch unsafe and ordered it repaired or removed.

The owners Tom and Brenda Voss are taking steps to restore the property, but it’s expensive. It has to be rebuilt to meet current code requirements, starting with new foundations. The existing cement porch deck needs to be removed, and both upper and lower porch decks need to be rebuilt to current standards. The porch roof has pulled away from the wall, and collapsed. The roof deck will need to be opened up, and raised back into position before the roof structure can be jacked back into place.

The ornamental roof sections on the parapet wall need to be reconstructed, and the main roof needs to be repaired where the wall has pulled away. We expect that repairs to sill plates and other water damage will be required.

Our goal for phase one is to stabilize the structure, and weatherproof the building. When that is completed,  work to restore the Victorian detailing on the front, and start to repair siding and windows and paint the other areas of the building.

The Voss’s have kicked off a fundraising campaign to help with the costs of bringing the general store back to its former glory. Please consider a donation at their  Go Fund Me site.

Thumbwind chipped in a $100. Your contribution, however small or large will mean a great deal to this little community and those who love history. Please share this post and donate.


Kilmanagh is a place stuck in lore and time. In the Spring of 1891 the this western Huron County village hosted a grist mill or two general stores, a  blacksmith shop, and two or three saloons. Today only a couple relics IMG_0859[1]


of the village remains, the aging general store, a 1940’s service station, and a closed liquor store. Its an interesting stop on your way to the coast of Saginaw Bay. If you stop treat it respectfully as it’s literally a museum exposed to the elements.


IMG_0884[1]


Walk among its ruins. Snap shots and hopefully write a few words on your find. The generals store is what takes your attention first. There is beauty in the decay.


IMG_0872[1]


It’s a little gold mine for still life artists. The best example of someone who really invested himself into this is  John Nagridge who  in several seasons painted Kilmanagh Fall, Winter and Spring themes.  You can visit John’s website to view more knife renderings of Kalmanagh’s general store.


Kal


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Where in the heck is Kilmanagh?


So the situation is this…your hurling  along Colwood Road north of Bach, MichiganCaro toward the coast of Saginaw Bay and you start seeing signs to slow down. First its Bach. A nondescript place on a map with no stop sign, no light but you notice a huge Pepsi-Cola General Store painted on one side of a building. This is the first of your ghost road stops. Bach is a place where unknown, but talented, photographers go to hone their craft and result in post a few shots that end up on Instagram with the hopes of selling a Canvas shot  online for $9.99. I stop IMG_0885[1]and snip a few myself.


Its a hopeless case. The sign on the front beckons potential customers to  call a phone number or knock on the door on the main house for a peek inside. I lean on the glass and IMG_0844[1]IMG_0845[1]

see relics from times gone by, someones extensive beer can collection is neatly stacked on circa 1930’s mercantile shelves. I see wooden school seat stacked neatly near the door. I move on.


Kilmanagh is a place stuck in lore and time. In the Spring of 1891 the this western Huron County village hosted a grist mill or two general stores, a  blacksmith shop, and two or three saloons. Today only a couple relics IMG_0859[1]of the village remains, the aging general store, a 1940’s service station, and a closed liquor store. Its an interesting stop on your way to the coast of Saginaw Bay. If you stop treat it respectfully as its literally a museum exposed to the elements.


IMG_0884[1]

Walk among its ruins. Snap shots and hopefully write a few words on your find. The generals store is what takes your attention first. There is beauty in the decay. IMG_0872[1]


Its a little gold mine for still life artists. The best example of someone who really invested himself into this is  John Nagridge who  in several seasons painted Kilmanagh Fall, Winter and Spring themes.  You can visit John’s website to view more knife renderings of Kalmanagh’s general store.

Kal


If you like this then check out our shop. ThumbWind-Mercantile offers T shirts unique to Michigan’s Thumb that can’t be found anywhere else.

Kilamanagh t