CCNS Back Shore | Dune Shack 5

Mission Bell (Professors Row)

“Mission Bell” is the popular name for this cottage, although the bell in question — a useful navigational landmark out in the dunes — was salvaged in 1955 not from a mission but from a one-room schoolhouse in Michigan. It’s the shack closest to the Somerset wreck.

It was built by Dom Avila and Jake Loring in 1936 and bought in 1953 by Mildred Champlin and her husband, Nathaniel L. Champlin, a professor at Wayne State University in Detroit and a lecturer at the Cranbrook Academy of Art. Unlike most shoreline buildings, it has managed to stay in one place over the years; as has the Champlin family, which has continuously occupied the cottage for six decades, now under a stipulation of settlement with the government running for the Champlins’ lifetime.

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