The Central Upper Peninsula and Northern Michigan University Archives is excited to announce that the personal papers of Dr. Fred C. Sabin are now open for research! Dr. Fred Sabin (1924-1997) was an ophthalmologist who lived and practiced in Marquette, Michigan for nearly 50 years. He served as Chairman of the Marquette County Republicans, was involved with the Marquette Rotary Club, served on the Northern Michigan University Board of Control from 1967 to 1984 (eventually receiving the rank of Trustee Emeritus), and the Michigan State Board of Registration in Medicine from 1963 to 1967. Perhaps due to the comedic personality present in his writings, or perhaps due to his obvious aptitude for politics and the public sector, he was know to be caught “hob-nobbing” with notable characters such as George Romney, Dominic Jacobetti, Ogden E. Johnson, William G. Milliken, Edgar E. Harden, and John X. Jamrich.
The papers in this collection mostly document Dr. Sabin’s activities as Chairman of the Marquette County Republicans and member of the Northern Michigan University Board of Control. The collection is a fairly accurate documentation of Republican politics in the 1960s. As Dr. Sabin himself says in a letter to the 6th Precinct Republican Organization, “[Voters are] divided into the Saints (i.e. Republicans), Savables (Independents) and Sinners (Democrats). We, of course, are not interested in getting the latter group to vote.” The bulk of the material focuses on the election of the 43rd governor of Michigan, George W. Romney (Republican). Of particular use may be the project files which denote the handling of significant events in Michigan politics by the Republican Party, such as the 1963 Constitutional Convention and recount, the re-apportioning of Michigan voting districts, fundraisers and campaigning events, and elections.
In addition to his work with NMU and the Republican Party, Dr. Sabin was involved in (and sometimes ran) innumerable community organizations working to improve economic conditions, expand medical facilities and the availability of medical care, and involve community members in the democratic process. The papers document Dr. Sabin’s interaction with, Marquette area community leaders, Northern Michigan University Administrators, colleagues in the medical profession, the various groups and committees with whom Sabin was involved, including, Young Republicans, Republican Women’s groups, the Republican State Central Committee, and the Marquette Rotary Club.