After appearing at the Pine Grove event last Saturday, home to Governor Moses Wisner, one's thoughts turned to the difference between the Pontiac of the 1860s and today. The city has seen its ups and downs, and it's hard to get a handle on the nature of the town before GM, Wide Track Drive, M-57, and all of the modern amenities that (should) make up today's urban life. What incredible history is there, though! How many cities have, right in their downtown, the home of a Chief Executive of the State, who after leaving office entered military service on behalf of that State and Nation and gave his/her life for them?! This after helping be an early leader in the political effort to end American slavery. This after
A curiosity: the nearby athletic facility is named for this hometown hero. Wisner Stadium was built in 1941 -- the first year of another awful war, and it was where Pontiac's high school football teams played for over a half-century. In 2006, , and where the special turf from Super Bowl xxx was donated, I came across another interesting fact. According to one source, "the Pittsburgh Steelers used the vacant Pontiac Silverdome as a practice facility. FieldTurf was installed specifically for the practices, rather than using the artificial turf that was previously used. Following the game, the new playing surface was donated to Wisner Stadium by FieldTurf."
Today it is home to the Panthers, the Pontiac High School football team, along with other youth events. Wisner was but 47 when he died. Surely he would be gratified by the legacy he left, on the football field and elsewhere.