Welcome to McMillin Tours
2-Sept. 3-5- UGRR Tour of Canada- HIGHLIGHTS-Single.-$386 -Dbl. Room-$226 each
AUGUST 3-6, 2017—UGRR TRIP- Ohio and Kentucky--Double-(Each person pays -$399)--Single $599- This is Stewart's best UGRR trip!!! This is about the 10th time he has done this trip. A great tour description is found on our website. Ohio features Wilberforce, Springboro Cincinnati, Ripley, Wellington & Oberlin. Kentucky features Maysville, Washington & Mays Lick.. In August 10-13 our 2nd trip of the year to Wash. DC. will be scheduled. It will be modeled after the first trip. Videos will be shown in a continuous manner as we take a beautiful coach bus. There is a list of the Videos that we will see in the tour description. A Days Inn-Super 8 which includes a breakfast, in the posh suburb of Washington DC is where we will be staying and eating. Many great restaurants are within a mile or so from our motel.
Price to be announced.
See below for more information...
Sept. 3-5-This UGRR trip will feature all of the places in Canada that are close to Detroit on ONE TOUR!!!! We will spend two nights in a Travelodge in Chatham, Ontario Single.-$386 -Dbl. Room-$226 each
See below for more information...
Two day trips are planned in September:
Detroit's Boomtown Tour is Sept. 16 - (9:30-4:30) ($40)
I could have put 10 more exclamation proclamations after the BOOMTOWN TOUR!!!! but, that probably would be "overkill"! I will now calm down and get to the point.
Detroit Celebrity Home Tour is October 30 - (9:30-4:30) ($40) From its inception the city has enjoyed many nicknames. Detroit originated from the French word "STRAITS". In the early 20th Century a new nickname arose. THE MOTOR CITY included Ford, Olds, Dodge, and thousands of others. The USA entered World War II and a new name emerged. " The Arsenal of Democracy" converted our factories to the weapons of war. Then the 1960's came and the name MOTOWN became synonymous with DETROIT.
So we will drive by about 45 homes featuring-Florence Ballard, Ty Cobb, Francis Ford Coppola, Berry Gordy, Jimmy Hoffa, Aretha Franklin, Casey Casem, Sebastian Kresge, Charles Lindbergh, Jackie Wilson, Tom Selleck, Walter Reuther, Stevie Wonder, Spencer Haywood, Sonny Eliot, Martha Reeves, Dennis Archer, Marshall Mathers. (M & M) Carl Levin, Jerome Bettis, and Mike Wallace.
Finally October 19-21, 2017 will find us going to Canada for a marvelous trip including Niagara Falls & the UGRR. Two nights in a Howard Johnson's Motel near Niagara Falls. We will venture into the town of Oakville to learn about two really cool UGRR people, and another stop will be to Visit an UGRR couple whose home is still in Ancaster near Hamilton. Of course, you cannot do Niagara Falls without doing Niagara on the Lake. Special arrangements have been been made to see that you have a WINE TASTING event also.
Dbl Room $238 each -Single Room-$386
See below for more information...
(Sgl-$559) (Dbl-$399-each) During this fabulous 4 day, 3 night adventure we will either visit or learn about the following Ohio Cities: Wilberforce, Springboro, Cincinnati*, New Richmond, Point Pleasant, RIPLEY, Georgetown, Red Oak, Sardinia, Columbus, Wellington, Oberlin.& Sandusky. Kentucky cities will include, Maysville, Washington, Mays Lick & Augusta..
AUGUST 4-FRIDAY- The beginning of our “WOW ADVENTURE” happens at 9:00 AM from the Military Museum in Eastpointe. As we drive south on I-75 we will introduce ourselves, go thru Stewart's handouts, watch relevant videos and have lunch on bus. Please bring your own lunch for the first day. Stewart will have plenty of soft drinks, water, snack stuff, apples and “sweets' for your pleasure. When we come to Dayton we will learn about Paul Lawrence Dunbar (he grew up here).Near Wilberforce we will learn about some of the UGRR history in this area..We then drive thru Wilberforce University Campus and see historic markers and visit the Wilberforce Museum. (our 1st stop) This is the oldest private historically black college in the USA! After visiting the Wilberforce Museum. we will see the “Cry Baby” Bridge and then the home of the 3rd Black Man who went to Westpoint--Charles Young! (our 2nd stop) (We will see the home that he was born in when we get to Kentucky)
Our 3rd stop will be Springboro, where we will visit a B & B which once served as a “station”on the UGRR. In that home we will see a secret hiding place where fugitives could hide if necessary. Springboro once had over 20 homes that were on the UGRR!!! We will see many of them.(outside only). We will eat at a choice of restaurants before we check into our Red Roof Inn. We will be spending two nights here. .
AUGUST 5--SATURDAY- Our 1st highlight today will be driving near the beautiful Spring Grove Cemetery in Cincinnati(“Cinci”) (2nd largest Cemetery in the USA) where we will learn about the final resting places of two very famous abolitionists---Supreme Court Justice Samuel Chase & Levi Coffin—a former “President” of the UGRR. Our 1st stop today will be the home where Harriet Beecher Stowe stayed in Cinci. She wrote the novel Uncle Tom's Cabin. This experience at her home will be a REMARKABLE VISIT!! Our next stop will be lunch at a choice of restaurants in downtown Cinci. The area is called “The Banks”. In the afternoon we will see one of the HIGHLIGHTS OF THE TRIP:---The fantastic FREEDOM CENTER on the banks of the Ohio River in Cinci.(1:30-5:00) You will never forget the sight of the SLAVE PEN! etc. After the museum we will walk near the Ohio River reading historical markers. We also will look across the Ohio River to Covington, Kentucky. A very sad UGRR incident occurred near this place. We will learn about the horrors suffered by Margaret Garner (& her children) on their attempt to gain freedom. Dinner will be at a choice of restaurants in “The Banks”
AUGUST 6- SUNDAY- In the AM we will drive along the Ohio River. seeing romantic, historical , & relevant towns in Ohio associated with the UGRR, etc.(Richmond, Pt. Pleasant,Moscow, & RIPLEY!). Before the Civil War Ripley, Ohio along with John Rankin, John Parker and a host of other brave people escorted or gave directions to thousands of people on the UGRR. In Ripley we will climb FREEDOM HILL (optional). This is a steep walk where fugitives in the 19th Century escaped slavery in Kentucky & sought refuge at Pastor John Rankin's home at the top of the hill in Ripley. We will have a tour of John Rankin's home. You will have a breathtaking. view of the Ohio River and Kentucky from the Rankin home. We will then enjoy lunch at a choice of restaurants in Ripley. After lunch we will tour Main Street where we will see a number of “stations” on the UGRR including John Parker's home---an incredible abolitionist! We will tour his home also! After Ripley we cross the Ohio River & learn about the Historic town of Maysville, Kentucky. We will walk along the levee located on the Ohio River & view beautiful murals. The murals describe the history & events in Maysville history.
1-In 1803 Meriwether Lewis (of the Lewis & Clark Expedition) picked up the famous (also infamous) John Coulter enroute from Pittsburgh to Louisville where they meet William Clark.
2-Lafayette made a trip back to the USA from France about 45 years after his French Army helped George Washington win the American Revolution. Lafayette was only 19 when he came to assist the Continental Army. He left Pittsburgh on the Ohio River to come to Maysville. (same trip Meriwether Lewis made in 1804)
3-Thornton Blackburn was born here. He and his wife Lucie escaped slavery in Louisville & became famous in Detroit. His escape from a Detroit Jail started the first Detroit Race Riot in 1833. He had been placed in jail by slave catchers, but, Detroit abolitionists broke in the jail & he & his wife escaped to Canada.. Thornton had the first taxi cab in Toronto!!!
Next we will go to Washington a quiet & relaxed village. Walking around this historic place seems to take you back 200 years. It does not have all of the commercial activity so many historical places seem to have. By far the most historical event in Washington was Harriet Beecher Stowe first saw slaves being sold---and it horrified her. The result—Harriet decided to write the book—Uncle Tom's Cabin.
We then check into our Super 8 Motel, freshen up, and head downtown to eat at Chandlers.
AUGUST 7- MONDAY- Our first stop today will be the cabin where Colonel Charles Young was born. This may be a “GOOSE PIMPLE” experience for some!! (it was for me when I first saw this cabin in October of 2015!) This exciting experience will be followed by a visit to a former plantation where the owners have a collection of objects and artifacts relevant to slavery! This experience will be even more “moving” than the Charles Young home!! We then eat lunch at a Ponderosa and then board the bus to head back home-
We will see Wellington (the famous Wellington raid really put OBERLIN ON THE MAP!!). We then arrive in OBERLIN—our last MAJOR STOP OF THE TRIP! We will learn about its history and some of the AMAZING PEOPLE who walked on this campus. We will tour the historic sites in Oberlin. I cannot predict our timing for this day. I hope we are back to Eastpointe no later than 9:00PM.!!!
*Cinci--this stands for Cincinnati.
MISCELLANEOUS INFO- Meals are on your own. I recommend you get travel insurance—866-877-3240-TRAVELGUARD.COM- I will provide snack stuff, pop, water, etc. Stewart
Price Higher because of our Motel--It is a Holiday Inn Express & Suites !!!!!!
Single Room- $386—Double Room --$226
The HIGHLIGHTS OF THIS TRIP ARE--seeing UNCLE TOM' CABIN a visit to NORTH BUXTON'S ANNUAL REUNION! & staying in a HOLIDAY INN EXPRESS & SUITES! We will also visit these major sites!!!!!!!!------Windsor, Sandwich, Amherstburg, Chatham, & the incredible John Walls site.
Sept. 3- SUNDAY--This three day adventure begins in Eastpointe on Sept.3 at 9:00 AM.
First, we drive thru the tunnel, go thru customs., & visit the CURRENCY EXCHANGE!!
It is a GREAT TIME to visit Canada for YOUR POCKETBOOK!! Please be aware of the different possibilities you have at customs. Of course, US Passports are best, but, an enhanced USA Driver's License also works.
Our first stop will be in Windsor (near the Casino) where we will see a Historic Marker which is tied in with DETROIT. Ed Dwight is the sculptor of these two monuments. In Hart Plaza in Detroit the granite monument features George DeBaptiste pointing across the Detroit River to FREEDOM!! The Marker in Windsor represents the BEACON OF FREEDOM for thousands of enslaved blacks!!!!
Next we are going to visit the Sandwich First Baptist Church which is the oldest black Church in Windsor. It is Sunday so we are going to pray for in this church with our Canadian neighbors!! This will be a very solemn occasion! After the service we will be given a tour of the church.
Next we take off for Amherstburg where we will eat lunch at a choice of wonderful restaurants. After lunch we have a little freetime and then we visit the Amherstburg National Black Museum of Canada. We then take Highway 401 in our beautiful coach bus (Nuline Tours with the bus driver HENRY!) & drive to Chatham. --the most historic black town in Canada! We check into our wonderful Holiday Inn Express & Suites. We will rest for a bit & then take a short tour & finally dinner at your choice of restaurants!!!
MONDAY, Sept. 4—After our hot breakfast our next stop will be South Buxton to see the church & North Buxton to see the Parade. We arrive about noon to see the famous annual “parade “ & to enjoy the beautiful people!” You can pack your own lunch or get it in North Buxton. Descendants from North Buxton have been arriving here each Labor Day for about 90 years to celebrate its history! This is a rare place where race is pretty much a non-issue!! We will tour their museum & among the many things we will learn about is that the Black School was so successful that many local whites from the area left their schools & enrolled in the North Buxton Black School!! We will visit that one room school! MAKE SURE you take time to talk to people on this wonderful day! Late in the afternoon we will go into historic Chatham. Other historic sights will also be seen. Dinner is on your own in charming Chatham.(Glitters Fun Eatery or the Satellite Restaurant) We will be staying again in the Holiday Inn Express & Suites Chatham!!!
TUESDAY-We enjoy another wonderful hot breakfast at our beautiful hotel. After breakfast we get on country roads thru the agricultural Ontario countryside to Dresden. This is where Josiah Henson lived. He was the main character in Harriet Beecher Stowe's best selling novel-Uncle Tom's Cabin. Of course we will see the “cabin” & museum.
Hensen established the Dawn Settlement for slaves to learn skills & begin a brand new life of FREEDOM! Queen Victoria wanted to meet him! Josiah made two trips to England--& indeed he did meet Her Majesty! Lunch arrangements in Dresden are WONDERFUL! We will have two or 3 choices. After lunch we are off for the home site of the amazing John Wall's. He lived about 10 miles from Windsor near a small town called Puce. (Puce means mosquito in French!) It is one of the most famous & amazing UGRR stories of all times!! We then have some free time. That can be spent at numerous choices:
- the Casino, having dinner,
- visiting Dieppe Park & the Windsor Waterfront,
- or shopping at the Tunnel Duty Free Shop.
Group can decide on what they want to do. We could just go home!! That would include crossing the Ambassador Bridge and enjoying the view from the BRIDGE!!
The departure point is 16600 Stephens Rd. in Eastpointe-48201.
Stephens is the equivalent of 9 & One Half Mile Rd. (their phone number is 586-872-2581 and their e-mail is ---- email@example.com
My website— www.mcmillintours.com
Bring enough money for FOOD and SHOPPING!!!!! and HAVE FUN!
& the AFRICAN--AMERICAN MUSEUM!! & MT. VERNON (Home of George Washington)-- Double Room- Each person pays $189-------Single-$299
Wow, it wasn't easy, but success usually comes with persistence! I am talk- ing of course of getting those tickets for the African-American Museum!!!!! Trip will include driving to Washington D.C. on Tuesday, seeing THE MUSEUM on Wednesday & coming home on Thursday after seeing George Washington's -Mt.Vernon on Thursday AM. Stewart has many wonderful videos that we will enjoy coming & going to Washington. We will be back in Detroit about 10:00 PM. Some of the videos include--------------------------------------------
- 1-The Africans-Many Rivers to Cross-by Henry Louis Gates.(on PBS in spring of 2017)
- 2- The Abolitionists- (featuring William Lloyd Garrison, Frederick Douglas, Angela Grimke, Harriet Beecher Stowe, & John Brown)
- 3-UGRR-The William Still Story (President of the UGRR in the east)
- 4- Underground Railroad- Hosted by Alfre Woodard
- 5-The Better Hour- The Legacy of William Wilberforce.
- 6- Uncle Tom's Cabin- by Harriet Beecher Stowe (Starring Josiah Henson)
- 7-Unfortunate Blackness-The Rise & Fall of Jack Johnson. Film directed-by Ken Burns.
- 8- AMAZING GRACE- THIS IS THE BEST!!!!!!!!!!!!!
- 9- Maya Angelo---”And Still I Rise”
SOME OF THE RESTAURANTS WE MAY EAT AT IN WASHINGTON-- Denny's, Out Back Steakhouse, Chili's, Applebee's, TGIF- Friday's, & Old Ebbitt Inn!
This time we will be staying in a Super 8-Day's Inn Motel in Alexandria, Virginia which includes breakfast. Alexandria, Virginia is a posh suburb of Washigton D.C .
MORE STUFF RELATED TO SEPT. 26-28 Trip!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!-----------------
Hello Everyone, If you are looking forward to more “BLABBER” on Infrastructure,Reconcilation, Deregulation, Regulation, Democrats, Republicans, Tax Reform, Tax Cuts, Unmasked, the Tuesday Group, Freedom Caucus, Health Care Bill, Art of the Deal, Russian Interference, Putin, Isis, Neil Gorsuch, Sanctuary Cities, --- you are GETTING ON THE WRONG BUS!!!!!!!!!!!
However, if you love HISTORY, the SMITHSONIAN (19 museums total), Washington D.C. AFRICAN-AMERICAN HISTORY, the White House, The Mall, the Jefferson Memorial, the Lincoln Monument, the Washington Monument, the Martin Luther King Jr. Monument, Korean War Memorial, Vietnam War Memorial, the Pentagon, ARLINGTON CEMETERY, Iwo Jima Memorial, WWII, Memorial, the Reflecting Pool, etc. I could keep on going, but, you get the idea.!!!!
Please FORGIVE ME for places I have left out!
Happy Traveling!!, Stewart
UNDERGROUND RAILROAD TOUR TO CANADA - 2 NIGHTS AT NIAGARA FALLS & A DRIVE THRU TORONTO - OCTOBER 19-21
Dbl-$199 (Each person pays $199) Single $299
On THURSDAY October 19 we will take off from our Military Museum in Eastpointe at 9:00 sharp. After crossing the Ambassador Bridge we will go to a currency exchange & take advantage of the GREAT RATE for the USA these days!!! Then, Stewart will go thru his videos & play ones that are the most relevant. Stewart hopes that everyone can pack a lunch so we do not have to make a stop just for lunch. Stewart will have FREE bottled WATER, & FREE soft drinks, snack food, & sweets!
Our first stop (not counting restroom breaks every two hours) will be St. Catherine's where we will see the Welland Canal (takes large ships between Lake Ontario & Lake Erie) & the St. Catherine's Museum.(there is an exhibit on Black History here). We then go by the cemetery where Anthony Burns is interred. Next, we will see an historical marker where Richard Pierpoint once lived. (an amazing human being!) We will also learn about several key abolitionists including the Rev. Hiram Wilson, Mary Ann Shadd Cary, & the FAMOUS HARRIET TUBMAN!! Yes, that Harriet Tubman!!!Visiting her wonderful church will be the historic highlight of this trip! Ada,(a descendant of an enslaved person) will give us a tour of her church. We are then off for Niagara Falls where we will check into our Howard Johnson Motel!!
FRIDAY, Oct. 20- Our first visit today is a church that was used as a “safe house” in Niagara Falls (Nathaniel Dett). We then get on the QEW and take it to the Fort Erie area near Buffalo. Here we will see FORT ERIE, the CROSSING PLAQUE --- (the story of crossing the river from Buffalo---not so easy!!-compared to the lazy Detroit River!!) Other sites we will see include BERTIE HALL (where we will learn about William Forsyth & 2 of his sons) & LITTLE AFRICA ! William Forsyth had 19 children before he said “I give up!!!! NO MORE KIDS!!” We then get on the Niagara Parkway & go north (Parallel to the Niagara River) & see various UGRR sites on our way to Niagara on the Lake!! (the prettiest city in Canada!!)That will include Chloe Cooley, the Colored Core, & Richard Pierpoint. We will have lunch at a choice of restaurants in the historical & romantic town of Niagara on the Lake. Some free time after lunch (if the group desires & if there is time.)
After this, we will learn about the Negro Cemetery, Bill Seward, Rev. John Oakley, & Solomon Mosby. We may visit a school where we will experience history. We then go to a WINERY where a GOOD TIME WILL BE A SURE THING!!!! After a nominal fee we will ENJOY THE WINE in an atmosphere of relaxation & peace. We then go back to Niagara Falls for dinner & have free time to see Niagara Falls, etc.!!!!!
Sunday, Oct.21-If we have not seen Niagara Falls (as much as we wished for) we will take time this morning!! Our first adventure today will be visiting Oakville. Particularly well remembered is Captain Robert Wilson. We will see his home which is still standing at 279 Lawson Street. He brought many enslaved people on his ships to Oakville. Many black people were at his funeral. A black man named James “Canada Jim” Wesley Hill was a strawberry farmer, but, that is not what he is most famous for. He was an abolitionist & in the Black Community and he is widely recognized for aiding the emancipation of close to 800 slaves! His home has a plaque on it & we are invited to see his home!! His home is located at 457 Maple Ridge Street. We then travel on to Ancaster where we will meet Generals Griffin and his wife Priscilla. They were from Virginia and for over 150 years their descendants lived & worked this beautiful valley farmland. His most recent descendants married some white people and many people thought the Griffins were white!! They managed to live in a place high upon a hill where they lived a quiet life.
Depending on time, we will possibly see a black farming community. There is a Black Cemetery there that was made up of mostly people in the African Methodist Episcopal Church. It is the biggest black cemetery in Canada!! We may see that cemetery. It is located in Otterville.
MISCELLANEOUS INFO ON TRIP--
1-The amazing story of the UGRR is quite a tale. One terrific book is one written by Karolyn Smardz Frost. It involves Maysville, Kentucky, Detroit & Toronto. It is the story of Lucie & Thornton Blackburn. The book's title is--- I Have Got a Home in Glory Land!!
2- Meals will be on your own.
3- Many cool videos will be shown on bus on trip!!!
4- See website for details on Canada Border. You must have a valid passport or an enhanced Drivers License or an enhanced State ID.
5- Tour will leave from Eastpointe. 16600 Stephens Road. Tour leaves from a wonderful Military Museum less than one block from Gratiot.
6- Stewart can be reached at 313-922-1990 or cell—313-605-8719.
Who Is Stewart McMillin?
WHO IS STEWART & WHY HE DOES WHAT HE DOES- I have been conducting tours of Detroit since 1968. I have lived in Indian Village since 1996, having moved there from Grosse Pointe. I graduated from MSU in 1962 with a Major in History & earned the Degree of Master of Arts from EMU in 1967. I subbed in DPS in 1963 & then taught full time in Hazel Park from 1963-1964. From 1964-1993 I taught Social Studies, coached, & was involved in many clubs at East Detroit High School (now known as Eastpointe). Teaching Humanities at WSU kept me busy from 1994-2001. In addition to teaching, and conducting tours, traveling has been one of my passions. I have now been to all 50 states, all of the Canadian Provinces, (plus Yukon) and 141 countries including 17 countries in Africa and every country in Europe, except Iceland.