1906; Wrought Iron; Architectural Artifact
Ross Athletic Campus; State Street between Hartwig and Weidenbach Buildings
Ferry Field was named for Dexter M. Ferry, who gave 17 acres of land to the university in 1902 for athletic use. Ferry also provided the funds for construction of a brick wall around two sides of the property, with an ornamental gate at the northeast corner (State at Hoover), which included ticket windows (see second thumbnail; from 1914). The ornamental wrought iron gate and wall of Bedford limestone and brick were designed by noted Detroit architect Albert Kahn. The wall was completed in spring 1906, and the football field that summer, hosting its first game fall of 1906. The first club house and later Athletic Administration building (now called Hartwig Building) was built at the east end of the field in 1912, and was connected to the brick wall with an ornamental gate on either side. After Michigan Stadium was built in 1927, the Ferry Field stands and wall began to come down first to make way for the Intramural Sports Building in 1928. The former football field was converted for track and field. The corner gates and wall were removed in 1954 to make way for the new Athletic Administration Building (now called Weidenbach Hall). The original main gate bearing the Ferry Field legend was moved at this time to the north side of the Hartwig Building. Additional sections of the ornamental cast iron gate survive as well, one on the south side of Hartwig and one on the northeast side of Yost Ice Arena.