It’s getting harder and harder to imagine life in Detroit 100 years ago, but yesterday it seemed clear as day. A colleague and I set out to find Ty Cobb’s home from his early playing days with the Detroit Tigers. We found it alive and well on Commonwealth Street in the Woodbridge District about a mile from Tiger Stadium.
The house (pictured below) is a duplex. Cobb reportedly lived in the northern unit shown on the right. We found the house and the surrounding area to be in decent shape. It wasn’t hard to imagine Mr. Cobb walking out the front door on his way to Bennett Park.
Detroit is filled with forgotten treasures like this one. For anyone on a trip through the city this summer, I recommend taking an extra five minutes to see this little gem. The home is located at 4117 Commonwealth Street just north of Grand River Avenue and east of 12th Street. Your goosebumps will thank you.
Our thanks go to our dear friend, Bill Dow of Birmingham, who gave us a guided tour through some incredible neighborhoods via telephone. He explained to us that Mr. Cobb also lived in the original Pontchatrain Hotel (no longer standing) and later moved to the ritzy Boston-Edison area off of Woodward.
In my opinion, Mr. Dow has done more to preserve Detroit sports history than anyone else I know.
Ty Cobb’s Detroit home located about one mile from Tiger Stadium.