Josiah Dallas Dort

Josiah Dallas Dort b: February 2, 1861 d: May 17, 1925, always falls in the shadows of Durant and Mott when it comes to Flint history. When you read about all the things he has done to better Flint you will have a better understanding of what I mean. If not for General Motors, Dort would maybe be the one most remembered in Flint. But even as it stands he is still one of the great men who always stepped forward in Flint. Now just a little more background on J.D.Dort. As stated in the article from 1918 he was twice married. His first wife “Nellie” Matilda Bates died in Phoenix, Arizona March of 1900, and was buried in Flint, Michigan at Glenwood Cemetery. Dort took a two year absence from Flint when his wife became ill. She required the drier climate in Phoenix. After her death he then got remarried May 8, 1906 to one “Mable” Marcia Webb the daughter of Charles Augustus and Rosa Webb. Her father Charles was once commandant at Fort Mackinac. Her mother Rosa founded the first library on Mackinac Island. Marcia was born September 1, 1881 and passed away in Flint in 1978. I have found two conflicting dates for her death. One shows August of 1978, another shows October 12, 1978. Either way she is listed as being buried in the Old Flint Cemetery. How they met, I have not found yet. She went to college at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and later transferred to Vassar in upstate New York. I guess what I’m driving at is, like his friend Durant, Dort was another well to do businessman who liked the younger ladies. Another interesting fact I found in the Dearborn Historian from 1968 states that “Dort was the person responsible for bringing Charles Nash into the fold”. It says that Nash came to his attention while working as a cherry picker on Dort’s farm. This conflicts with the story of Durant having discovered Nash’s talents. One final note: as a tribute to Dort, a highway in Flint was named in his honor. Part of the famous “Dixie” highway, which was called Western road at that time, was simply renamed, “Dort” highway. This was changed by the Flint city council on August 2, 1926, a little over a year after he passed away. The business route for the Dixie was Saginaw Street through downtown Flint. follow the link for Nash history

Charles W. Nash

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