HISTORY OF WOLDUMAR NATURE CENTER

Woldumar barnIn the mid-1960s a group was formed to develop a conservation education program for young people. Woldumar Nature Association (Woldumar’s parent organization) is the result. Mrs. Gladys Marguerite Olds Anderson (daughter of automotive pioneer Ransom Eli Olds) generously donated half of her dairy farm to the association. The equipment storage barn soon became classroom space and administrative offices. In the early 1980s the Moon Log Cabin was donated and moved to Woldumar for our cultural heritage programs.

 

HAVE AN ENCOUNTER WITH HISTORY

Visit the Moon Log Cabin located in the central part of Woldumar Nature Center. History comes alive for your family as you visit this authentic piece of Michigan’s rustic past. Sit on the porch and imagine resting after a hard day’s work, relaxing as you view the natural setting of forest that surrounds our site. In the Blacksmithnearby garden, walk among the herbs that would have been important to the family. We’ve even built a shelter that houses an historic blacksmith’s oven.

Children in our camps and school field trips are exposed to historic toys and games in this setting, learning how children of the era might have spent their free time, and seeing how they lived.

 

HISTORY OF MOON LOG CABIN

One of the oldest residences in Eaton County, its restoration preserves the Moon Log Cabin to 1860 when it was first inhabited. The cabin is the only known historic house of log construction in Eaton County that is being restored and preserved.

The cabin was reportedly built by the older sons of Sands and Mary Moon during the period between 1860 and 1862, and was the boyhood home of their younger brother, Darius B. Moon (who would later become a successful Lansing architect). Two stories high with an attic above the second floor, the cabin is an impressive and well-built structure.

winter_cabin_snowy-B&WThe cabin was still occupied when General Motors bought the property. Through the generous assistance and cooperation of Oldsmobile and Delta Township, the house was moved intact in 1980 from its original location on Canal Road southeast of Mt. Hope to its new foundation at Woldumar. The porch and herb garden representative of the time were also added.

Because of the cabin’s State Historical designation, any restoration done must be accurate historically and verifiable to the time period in which the Moons lived in the cabin and proven through writings or photographs. After cabin restoration, a folk art curator was hired to facilitate programs for school children and the general public. Budget cuts eliminated that position, but volunteer docents provide historical information during special events.