D H DAY STATE PARK
David Henry Day was not the founder of Glen Haven, nor the first to capitalize on its access to the relatively cheap and rapid transportation that the Great Lakes provided. In 1857, C. C. McCarty, brother-in-law of Glen Arbor pioneer John E. Fisher, built a saw mill and inn on the beach west of Glen Arbor. In 1878, NTC President Philo Chamberlain acquired Glen Haven in order to assure a reliable supply of wood for a 24 vessel fleet.
To serve as NTC's agent in Glen Haven, Chamberlain picked D.H. Day, his sister-in-law's younger brother. The job involved many responsibilities including dockmaster when ships arrived at Glen Haven. Before long, Day became master of all of Glen Haven. In 1881, Day bought NTC's properties, including the village of Glen Haven, using his savings and money borrowed from his friend Perry Hannah of Traverse City's Hannah & Lay Lumber Company, where he served briefly as manager.
Day also announced that he and a silent partner had purchased the NTC steamers Lawrence and Champlain to form the Northern Michigan Line with freight and passenger service to Chicago, Milwaukee and a number of Michigan stops... Northwest Michigan became a popular destination for vacationers, and steamer was a popular mode of travel.
For about three decades, water was a far more pleasant way to travel than by road or rail. Many Chicago businessmen left their families in northern Michigan for summer vacations, joining them on Saturday mornings after an overnight trip from Chicago and then departing for Chicago on Sunday night. The one-way fare: five dollars.
Day initially paid his lumberjacks 15 cents an hour, and dock hands 35 cents an hour. Pay was often in the form of coupons redeemable only at the D.H. Day store, which also served as a telegraph office (Day built the telegraph line to Leland), a post office and a nerve center of the community. The second story of the store served as home for the Day family.
On 20 December 1889 David Henry Day, thirty-six years old, and Eva Ezilda Farrant, nineteen years old, were married. Over a span of twenty one years, they had nine children. A daughter died at birth in 1890 when Eva Day fell on stairs, forcing an early delivery. A son, Houston, died at age three in 1906.