I grew up about a mile from Wagner Road. The idea that it was a gateway to history was new and intriguing to me. I wanted to go to the battlefield, and I wanted to see what I would see along the way. So I headed south on Wagner for the forty-mile drive to the battlefield.
Going back to prehistory, the first landmark I see is Dolph Lake, off Wagner between Jackson and Liberty. One of the three "Sister Lakes," it was formed when a large chunk of ice broke off from a retreating glacier some 13,500 to 16,000 years ago. The glacier also left behind the Defiance Moraine, which has its high point on Wagner near Scio Church Road. The view south from here is an expansive vista that is uncommon in these parts.
Many roads in southeast Michigan predate the arrival of Europeans by thousands of years. I cross one in downtown Saline: US-12, aka Michigan Avenue, the Chicago Road, and, until the nineteenth century, the Sauk (or Fox) Trail.