Monday, July 12, 2010

Battling 'sin and iniquity' in 19th Century Detroit

I told you, these Michigan Historical markers are everywhere!

Planted in the median of Randolph Street, not far from the RenCen (as you can see), stands a marker signaling where the Salvation Army once set up its Detroit post in the 1880s. When organizing the post, Captain Fink wrote to her British superiors: "This is the Metropolis of Michigan...a beautiful city, but oh, the sin and iniquity that abounds here."

"Iniquity," my dictionary tells me, means "wickedness." Not sure exactly what types of wicked acts were prominent back in the day, but apparently it was rampant. The sign goes on to tell of the Salvation Army concentrating its efforts near Cadillac Square, "a haven for persons of ill repute." Not far from that Cadillac Square location was Detroit's City Hall, which makes you wonder how Captain Fink and her superiors would've viewed some of our more recent political figures in the D.