Zachariah Chandler took the money and ran!

Zachariah Chandler statue at Lansing, Michigan

Zachariah Chandler statue at Lansing, Michigan


No, it was not a crime or even a bad thing. He didn’t steal any money. Young Zachariah Chandler was offered a choice by his father. He could have a college education completely paid for-or he could have $1,000 given to him. The year is 1833.  What would you have done? He was 19 or 20 years old. He was on the family farm. While helping out at the farm he taught school to earn extra money. I’m sure he had all of the dreams that young men have-some things never change. Well, Zac accepted the money from his dad. Except, he didn’t waste it. He didn’t “party” it away. Instead, he left home! He left New Hampshire and resettled in Michigan Territory. In fact, he moved to Detroit-the capital. And with the money his father had given him, he laid foundations for his future. He started a store. He invested in land speculation and in the business of banking. In just a few short years later, he owned the bank. He became one of the first men in Detroit to earn $50,000 a year in business. Further in his future he would be Mayor of Detroit, then Senator from Michigan, and Secretary of the Interior under President Grant. And speaking of presidents-he had much dealings with Abraham Lincoln-another self-made man. Yeah, Zachariah Chandler was blessed that his dad was able to give him that start with the cash- but the rest was on him. And he did a great job. Oh that more young men would be so responsible with the gifts and blessings that life and God has bestowed.


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