| I have Mr. Morgan walking down a street in a section of town I call
Sixth Street in Calumet Michigan. The streets and sidewalks have never been
redone since the Great Depression as the town never recovered from that
era even until this day.
|| Old Morgan
After a year in Kindergarten, I started to play with the neighborhood
kids I went to school the year. Us boys spent a lot of time hanging out
at Eddies house on the corner of 4th and Pine street. The storefront next
to his place is where Morgan operated a Grave Stone business with several
finished Head Stone in a window display. What puzzled me, there where names
engraved on them. If that wasn't creepy enough, across the the street from
Eddies, was the Peterson Funeral Home.
Mr. Morgan took a Dailey stroll up town along the main street (5th
street) and then came back and walked past his place a couple blocks down
Pine Street. It was more of an easy stroll than a walk. The kids all noticed
that he never stepped on a crack or an expansion joint on the concrete.
His gait was set in a manor that his stride perfectly missed the joints
without hesitation. The only problem he encountered was right by his place
where Fouth street cossed over the side walk. The concrete was jointed every
couple inches and there was no way to avoid a joint. We watched very intently
when he came to this section to see what he would do. He caulmly stepped
off the side walk and walked down the street and got back on when past that
Kids can get a little mean streak once in a while or become disrespectful
towards someone with oddball quirks. Mr. Morgan was always well dressed
like all other men from that era and seemed normal in his other behavior.
One day we were just hanging out and probably bored when Mr. Morgan came
by almost unnoticed, when some one yelled out, "Hey Morgan, you stepped
on a crack". He suddenly stopped, turned to look at us and without
any change of expression just stared us down. We all were overcome with
an eerie feeling and had to look away until he walked away. Later, I asked
my parents what they knew about him and explained what we had observed about
Mr. Morgan. My parents said they knew very little about him, but heard from
others that he was "Shell Shocked" from World War I. I now under
stood that as there were other men in the area with odd behavior that suffered
from that. You would think that us boys would have learned not to mess with
Mr Morgan, but!
It was probably Eddie, David, Jug Head and me walking up Fifth
Street one afternoon when we spotted Mr. Morgan ahead of us. There had been
a recent comic strip about a man walking down the street when four rascals
(teen angers) got up behind him and walked in perfect step with the fella
very close but not touching. Someone called a huddle and mentioned this
comic strip as we all would have read it. We very quietly got into step
with us behind Mr. Morgan. Other people saw this and started to laugh which
made Mr. Morgan stop (we almost or maybe ran into him). Again, the cold
expressionless stare without saying a word. We cut out and ran, never to
mess with him again. However, we bragged what we did to the other kids
and got away with it for a few exciting steps.
Close up of "Old Man Walking"
The figure at left was carved out of Bees Wax and a rubber mold made
from it and then they were cast in metal. The sculptures name is Charles
Weston and wasn't known beyond the community of model railroad people. This
picture makes the man four times larger than he really is and the detail
is still incredible.