Dundee Historic District, photo submitted in 1990. Dundee Historic District, photo submitted in 1990.
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Dundee Historic District
Roughly bounded by Main, Monroe, and Toledo streets, the River Raisin, Riley, Tecumseh, and Ypsilanti streets, Dundee - Monroe County
Property Type historic district
Style Late Victorian
Architect/Builder Henry Ford
Significant Person Henry Ford
Narrative Description The Dundee Historic District straddles the River Raisin and includes the historic central commercial and industrial core of the Village of Dundee. The district contains two separate areas-- the River Raisin with its existing dam, mill, and the sites of a no longer existing millrace and related industrial development and , back farther from the river, the historic core of the central business district. The present low concrete dam and the mill pond backing up behind it separate the 1850s frame Greek Revival mill in its park setting from the narrow riverfront park on the north bank that occupies the site of the former millrace and industrial development. Back a short distance from this riverfront park, and on higher ground, is the old business district of narrow-front, late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century brick commercial blocks grouped about a small triangular park complete with bandstand and cannon.
Statement of Significance The Dundee Downtown Historic District is important for its street plan of roads; radiating out from a central, triangular park, rather than forming the typical Midwestern grid; and for its downtown streetscapes of brick Italianate and Late Victorian store buildings. The buildings' uniform scale, brick facades; the round- and segmental-arch-head windows with original sash and ornamental trim intact; the corbelled and panelled brick cornices; and the storefront columns and other trim all contribute to the district's architectural and visual quality. The district is also notable for its mill which has direct associations with the early history of milling in the area and with Henry Ford's "Village Industries" experiment. The Greek Revival mill is believed to have been built about 1850 by Henry Angell. The "Village Industries" project was an experiment by Ford to see whether factory work could be economically done in small-town environments using water power. Ford purchased the Dundee mill property in 1934 and repaired and renovated it for manufacturing copper tips for welding machines. Used for light manufacturing after the Ford experiment was discontinued, the mill and its property were sold to the Village of Dundee in 1970. The mill building is used for public meetings and as a museum.
Period of Significance 1850-1940
Registry Type(s) 08/20/1990 National Register listed
Site ID# P24264