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David Brose Collection

Identifier: RH-A-4394

Scope and Contents

The Collection contains various research, reports, correspondence, meeting minutes/notes, agendas, financial documents, legal documents, plans, drafts, published writings and concept art from the Bronson Park Public Education Committee and its several subcommittees, the Kalamazoo Reservation Public Education Commission, and the Kalamazoo Historic Preservation Commission. Specifically, the materials relate to historic preservation efforts at Bronson Park and educational campaigns about the indigenous people who previously occupied much of modern-day Kalamazoo.


  • Creation: 2006-2021

Biographical / Historical

A number of projects were undertaken by the Bronson Park Public Education Committee (BPPEC). Most central to its mission was the Bronson Park 21st Century Campaign, an effort to maintain the cultural identity of Kalamazoo and educate the public about the history of the Gun Lake Tribe and their relation to the Fountain of the Pioneers which was previously located there. It aimed to fund the construction of structures that would serve as an educational tool and pay homage to the former Pottawatomi reservation which covered much of the current limits of the city of Kalamazoo. The BPPEC worked with the members of the Gun Lake band (some of whom were members of the committee) to present an accurate history of their occupation of the area – from the latter’s perspective. All of the materials found in this collection have some connection to this project.

Efforts to preserve the Fountain of the Pioneers monument in Bronson Park coincide with the local history of Pottawatomi because of the controversial nature of the concrete sculpture. A Fountain of the Pioneers Issues Resolution Committee was formed by the city of Kalamazoo in 2005 over concerns about the offensive symbolism of the fountain. The FOTP Issues Resolution Committee determined that the fountain should be preserved but that the history of local Pottawatomi should be taught accurately. The BPPEC essentially inherited this mission when it was formed years later. Leaders of the BPPEC were convinced that it was possible to both preserve the fountain and promote the history of the Gun Lake band with educational programming and the addition of new constructions. However, in 2018, the City of Kalamazoo ordered the demolition of the fountain and the proposed structures never came to fruition.

Biographical / Historical

David Brose was a member of the Bronson Park Public Education Committee as well as most of its subcommittees.


.75 Cubic Feet : 2 boxes total.

Language of Materials



This collection is comprised of papers and materials from the Bronson Park 21st Century Campaign in Kalamazoo, Michigan, and related efforts to preserve the Fountain of the Pioneers and teach the history of the Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish (aka Gun Lake) band of Pottawatomi in the area, dating from 2006 to 2021.

Physical Description

The collection amounts to .75 cubic feet. The materials are fairly recent and in good condition except for some creases or fold marks on many documents and small stains on just a few.

David Brose Collection Finding Aid
Evan Ralph, Mallory Heslinger
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Western Michigan University Archives & Regional History Collections Repository

Charles C. and Lynn L. Zhang Legacy Collections Center
1650 Oakland Drive
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5307 US
(269) 387-8490