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Detroit Curling Club
History of the Detroit Curling Club

1885 - 2010 History Book

Newly compiled in 2011 for the close of the Detroit Curling Club's 125th season, this book is comprised of four separate histories covering different periods of the club's existence. As the preface concludes, these stories "not only provide chronology and commentary, they celebrate the joy of curling and indomitable perseverance of club members in sustaining this organization for so many years."

The book is available as a PDF document which can be downloaded here: The Detroit Curling Club: A History, 1885 - 2010.

Humble Beginnings

The first curling club in the United States was organized in 1831 only 30 miles from Detroit at Orchard Lake, Michigan. Called the 'Orchard Lake Curling Club', the club used hickory block 'stones'. A Detroit Curling Club was started back in 1840 when Michigan only had a population of 212,000 and had only been in the Union for three years!

Along about this time an organization, called the 'Thistle Club' was founded, and curling being a winter sport, was played when the ice was right on the Detroit River at the foot of Joseph Campau, on the bay, and at the old Recreation Park. These clubs became the 'Granite Club' and in 1885 the present Detroit Curling Club was organized. At that time Detroit had a population of about 150,000 and its 'rapid' transit was horse-drawn. The Club was in action ten years before the first horseless carriages sputtered and backfired along Detroit's streets. Early curling matches were decided on the old Detroit Athletic Club field on the west side of Woodward Avenue, between Canfield and Forest Avenue, on natural ice, lighted by lanterns. The only similarity between those days and today was the red-faced, raucous shouts of the skips!

20th Century

Around the turn of the century (1899-1900) The Detroit Curling Club moved into its quarters at 1236 West Forest Avenue where the old Clubhouse was erected in 1906. In 1948 a disastrous fire partially destroyed the building, but not the spirit of the curlers. The damage was repaired and modern ice machines installed with six rinks of the best lighted ice to be found anywhere. In 1979 the city of Detroit purchased the old Clubhouse bringing about the move to a more modern facility at 5600 Drake Rd. in West Bloomfield, Michigan.

Throughout the years The Detroit Curling Club has developed into a team of ardent sports-men and women; people from dozens of different business and professional fields. Through the years The Detroit Curling Club has been the meeting place a famous sports figures, business leaders, politicians and many others who have made a name for themselves both locally and throughout the world.

Recent history

In 1962 and again 1975 The Detroit Curling Club was host to the United States Men's Curling Association's National Championship. In 1989 The Detroit Curling Club hosted the United States Curling Association's Men's & Women's National Championships. In many years The Detroit Curling Club has been a top contender for the National Crown. In 1958 at Milwaukee and again in 1963 at Duluth our Club was in the winner's circle. In 1963 The Detroit Curling Club represented the United States in the World Event in Scotland. Although, we did not win the world title, we were successful in defeating the strong Canadian rink, which eventually went on to win the World Title in the playdowns.

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