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The Dexters of Massachusetts and Michigan   

IN-PERSON: The Elderwise classroom at the Vineyard Church

The Dexters of Massachusetts: Washtenaw County's Connection to a Prominent American Family
From their arrival in Boston in 1642 through the mid-20th century, nine generations of Dexters left an indelible mark on America and eventually the world. Primarily, through a combination of business acumen and a zeal for public service, the Dexters made significant contributions to numerous events and movements in American history, including the Revolutionary War, the establishment of the Republic, settling and developing the Michigan frontier, abolition of slavery, temperance activism, the rebuilding of Chicago, and the 20th century struggle for women's rights. Frank Wilhelme, along with a group of residents, founded the Dexter Area Historical Society in 1971, and served as its first president. He has also served as executive director of the Historical Society of Michigan. After a career in teaching and historical administration, Frank held several positions at the University of Michigan until his retirement in 2009, including Assistant Dean for Alumni Relations and Development at the Ross School of Business.



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