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5 Fun Facts About January 15 In Michigan History

---Learn Every Day: MI Today In History Facts Texted Each Day - Text: history mi To: 618-270-4005---

1. The first official state flag of Michigan was adopted on January 15, 1911. The design features the state coat of arms and two blue stripes to represent Michigan's status as a Great Lakes state. The original flag is on display at the Michigan Historical Museum in Lansing.

2. On January 15, 1967, the Silver Bridge spanning the Ohio River between Point Pleasant, West Virginia and Gallipolis, Ohio collapsed during rush hour, sending 46 vehicles plunging into the water. 31 people died in the tragedy. Many Michigan residents were traveling across the bridge at the time, and the incident sparked calls for increased bridge safety inspections nationwide.

3. In 1941, automotive pioneer Ransom E. Olds passed away on January 15 at his home in Lansing. Olds was instrumental in developing the assembly line production method that revolutionized the auto industry, and his Oldsmobile brand was one of the most successful early car companies in the US.

4. The Detroit Lions played in their first NFL championship game on January 15, 1934, facing off against the Chicago Bears at New York's Polo Grounds. The Lions lost 23-21, but their appearance in the championship game helped to establish football as a major sport in Michigan.

5. January 15, 1990 marked the beginning of one of the worst ice storms in Michigan history. Freezing rain and sleet coated trees and power lines across the lower peninsula, causing widespread power outages and property damage. The storm lasted several days and left many Michiganders without electricity or heat in sub-freezing temperatures.
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