When you hear the words “the thing” you probably think of John Carpenter’s movie from 1982 staring Kurt Russell, but that’s not what this post is about. Outside of Memphis (Michigan of course, I am not that lost that I am in Tennessee) is a historical marker for ” The Thing” It marks the location where Thomas Clegg and his father put a steam engine on a wagon in 1884 making it the first self-propelled vehicle in the state and probably the country. They built the contraption in their machine shop and drove it for about 500 miles before they sold the engine to a creamery. I imagine them standing around the shop looking at the wagon and the steam engine grunting like Tim Allen and figuring out ways to give it more power. The marker stands where the shop once stood since it was demolished in 1936.
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