1913, Description of Starr Commonwealth campus
Even after Starr persuaded the owners of the farm “to shave off the price a bit” from $2000 to $1900, he had misgivings. As he admitted, “It was nothing more nor less than a run-down farm. The only buildings were an old barn and a rickety sheep shed already leaning on its elbow. The original house had burned, leaving a yawning excavation. The land was overgrown with weeds and burdocks six feet high covered the place.” Harold Bellair, the first boy to enter the Starr Commonwealth in October 1913, also remembered in 1945 that “the weeds were so high we had to cut them down in order to get from the house to thebarn.”
There was one disturbing aspect on the vista – when Starr gazed southeast across Montcalm Lake, his view stopped at mid-water. What laybeyond he did not want to see, nor did he for some time. Other people saw it often, for it was popular resort owned and operated by Mr. John Fox, a tavern keeper in Albion.
Source: Keith Fennimore. FaithMade Visible: The History of Floyd Starr and His School. Albion, Michigan:Starr Commonwealth. 1988.