George Mason Exhibit – The Lovells Museum of Trout Fishing History to Feature Exhibit on George W. Mason and the ‘Mason Tract – a Gift to Michigan’
George W. Mason and the Mason Tract on the South Branch of the Au Sable River is the focus of the Lovells Township Historical Society’s annual exhibit on the history of trout fishing. George W. Mason (1891-1954) is best known as a major American industrialist. During his career he served as the Chairman and CEO of the Kelvinator Corporation (1928-1937), the Nash-Kelvinator Corporation (1937-1954), and the American Motor Corporation (1954).
What is not so well-known is that throughout his life Mason was an avid outdoorsman as a fisherman, hunter, conservationist, and philanthropist. Mason was a visionary as a conservationist. He was instrumental in as a leader in Ducks Unlimited during the 1930s. He also played a fundamental role in counseling his fellow trout fisherman to found a similar organization for trout in the 1940s and 1950s. From his vision grew the beginnings of Trout Unlimited.
He was also a visionary as a philanthropist, for in his will he left a gift of 1,500 acres of land with 14 miles of shoreline on the Au Sable River South Branch to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Mason’s gift, which was designated the Mason Tract, was contingent that the area be used as a permanent game preserve, that no part shall ever be sold by the state, and that no camping be allowed in the area for 25 years. In accordance with his wishes, tract remains free of all development.
The Lovells Township Museum of Trout Fishing History is located on the Township grounds at 8405 Twin Bridge Road in Lovells Township. The exhibit will open on Saturday, April 28, and close on September 29. The exhibit is free and open to the public on Fridays and Saturdays, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Contact us at lovellsmuseum.com, LTHSmuseums@gmail.com, or 989-889-5580.