Copper, Cords and Cabbage: The Story of the Mineral Range Railroad’s South Range Branch

Some railroad employees pose with Mineral Range Railroad Engine #4. (Photo available on the Keweenaw Digital Archives)
Some railroad employees pose with Mineral Range Railroad Engine #4. (Photo available on the Keweenaw Digital Archives)

 

Please join us for visiting scholar Mark Worrall at 4:00 pm on Monday, November 10 in the East Reading Room of the Van Pelt and Opie Library on the Michigan Technological University campus. This event is free of charge and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.

In this presentation, Worrall will explore the history of the section of the Mineral Range Railroad that extended from Keweenaw Bay, through Mass City, to Riddle Junction. Many aspects of the line’s tenure will be examined, from its construction at the beginning of the twentieth century to its final abandonment in the 1930s. Major topics include the railroad’s connection to local industries, driving factors behind the line’s installation, complications faced during construction of the branch, passenger train operations and the influence that local Finnish culture had on the railroad.

Mark Worrall is a railroad historian whose research interests include the Duluth South Shore & Atlantic, historic interactions between Michigan’s railroads and the mining industry, Michigan rail wrecks and disasters, and late nineteenth and early twentieth century imagery of Michigan railroads. He is the current president of the Michigan Railroad History Conference and chaired the last two conferences. Mark’s research goals are to promote awareness and interest in Michigan’s rich railroad history.

Worrall’s research visit and presentation are supported by a travel grant from the Friends of the Van Pelt Library. Since 1988, the Michigan Technological University Archives Travel Grant program has helped scholars advance their research by supporting travel to the manuscript collections at the Archives.

For more information, feel free to call the Michigan Tech Archives at 906-487-2505, email at copper@mtu.edu, or visit on the web athttp://www.lib.mtu.edu/mtuarchives/.

Passengers, Packages, and Copper: The Steamer Pewabic, Its Archaeology, Management, Material Culture and the Development of the Keweenaw Peninsula

steamer bon voyage
The S.S. Bon Voyage, a passenger steamer ship similar to the Pewabic. (Photo courtesy of the Keweenaw Digital Archives)

 

Please join us for visiting scholar Philip Hartmeyer at 4:00 pm on Thursday, November 6 in the East Reading Room of the Van Pelt and Opie Library on the Michigan Technological University campus. This event is free of charge and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.

In this presentation, Hartmeyer will examine the passenger/package freighter Pewabic and speak to the multiple roles it played in the development of the Keweenaw and its copper industry. The hybrid steamer was a popular vessel to bring downstate tourists to the Copper Country and it also filled its hold with native copper on return trips, an important component of the Detroit mineral market. Pewabic embodies the mid-nineteenth century Great Lakes economic and cultural zeitgeist, having tapped into two profitable enterprises. Historical sources and underwater archaeological data will be used to unearth the identities of Pewabic afloat as well as the new identities it has adopted as an archaeological site, mass grave site, and salvage training ground.

Philip Hartmeyer is a maritime archaeologist currently working at the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary in Alpena, Michigan. Originally from San Francisco, California, Hartmeyer’s passion for maritime heritage has taken him all over the world to conduct surveys and excavations of shipwrecks. He received his masters in maritime archaeology from East Carolina University, where he wrote his thesis on the passenger/package propeller Pewabic, a middle 19th-century vessel that was instrumental to the copper industry and the settlement of the Keweenaw Peninsula.

Hartmeyer’s research visit and presentation are supported by a travel grant from the Friends of the Van Pelt Library. Since 1988, the Michigan Technological University Archives Travel Grant program has helped scholars advance their research by supporting travel to the manuscript collections at the Archives.

For more information, feel free to call the Michigan Tech Archives at 906-487-2505, email at copper@mtu.edu, or visit on the web at http://www.lib.mtu.edu/mtuarchives/.

Environmentalism at the Point of Extraction: Viewpoints, Politics, and Memory in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula during the Environmental Movement

A glimpse of activity at Gregoryville Sawmill on Torch Lake, near Lake Linden.  (Photo available on the Keweenaw Digital Archives)
A glimpse of activity at the Gregoryville Sawmill on Torch Lake, near Lake Linden, Michigan. (Photo available on the Keweenaw Digital Archives)

 

Please join us for a presentation by visiting scholar Camden Burd at 4:00 pm on Tuesday, October 14 in the East Reading Room of the Van Pelt and Opie Library on the Michigan Technological University campus. This event is free of charge and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.

In this presentation, Burd will address an environmental approach to the history of natural resource extraction in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Where once the Upper Peninsula was a booming industrial region, it is now a draw for vacationers to experience its sprawling forests and apparent wilderness. Between this era of environmental degradation and natural appreciation, there were disputes over the future of the U.P.’s environments. In the midst of the environmental movement of the 1960s and 1970s many voices attempted to understand, define, and direct how the Upper Peninsula would be perceived by future generations. This talk examines the different voices of the environmental movement and show the complexities behind today’s UP environmental identity.

Camden Burd is a PhD student at the University of Rochester where he studies American Environmental History. He earned his MA in History from Central Michigan University and BA of History from the University of Utah. He has received numerous travel funds from Central Michigan University and was the recipient of the Grace H. Magnaghi Visiting Research Grant at Northern Michigan University to study the environmental perceptions of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Originally from Grand Rapids, Michigan he is especially interested in the environments of the Great Lakes Region and the connection between people and place.

Burd’s research visit and presentation are supported by a travel grant from the Friends of the Van Pelt Library. Since 1988, the Michigan Technological University Archives Travel Grant program has helped scholars advance their research by supporting travel to the manuscript collections at the Archives.

For more information, feel free to call the Michigan Tech Archives at 906-487-2505, email at copper@mtu.edu, or visit on the web athttp://www.lib.mtu.edu/mtuarchives/.

Alumni Reunion Services

A picnic from the Michigan College of Mines (MCM) Reunion, August 8, 1931.
A picnic from the Michigan College of Mines (MCM) Reunion, August 8, 1931.  (Part of the Reeder Photographic Collection; available on the Keweenaw Digital Archives)

 

Michigan Technological University’s Van Pelt and Opie Library welcomes alumni, family and friends to visit the library for special services and exhibits during Alumni Reunion. Our Archives and Copper Country Historical Collections staff encourages visits and will have expanded hours.

SPECIAL HOURS DURING ALUMNI REUNION

The archives reading room will be open Th. (Aug. 7) – Fri. (Aug. 8), 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

LIBRARY TOURS
Thursday, August 7

Take a guided tour of the library’s resources and services. Tours begin at the Library and IT Service Center. No need to sign up in advance. Tours begin at 10AM, 1PM and 7PM.

EXHIBITS

Michigan Tech Remembers When…
Location: Library Main Entrance Hallway

The main hall past the Library and IT Service Center will feature an exhibit, Michigan Tech Remembers When…. This exhibit showcases early photographs from campus and student life as well as a display case showing a progression of Michigan Tech’s visual identity through the years.

Yearbooks and University Publications
Location: Archives Reading Room

Yearbooks and other university books are available for browsing in one of the archives’ book case displays.  This is a nearly complete range of Keweenawan yearbooks from 1924-2002 and a copy of the Engineer from 1915. The display case also includes popular university publications such as the book Michigan Tech Centennial 1885-1985, alumni bulletins from the Michigan College of Mining and Technology (MCMT), the MCMT Freshman Bible, and various years of the University’s Winter Carnival Pictorial. Also available for viewing: Lode on microfilm: 1921-2005 (digital copies of the Lode from 2009-2014 available on their website: http://issuu.com/michigantechlode), Michigan Tech vertical files: newspaper clippings and printed ephemera related to campus activities, sports, organizations, and academics, and Michigan Tech photo vertical files: photos related to campus activities, sports, organizations, and academics. Photocopies are available.

North to Adventure: A New Old Perspective of the Upper Peninsula
Location: Archives Reading Room

In the 1960s two tourists, Harold and Beatrice Putnam, visited the Copper Country and documented their journey with a Rolleiflex twin lens reflex camera. Ultimately, the images from this trip made their way into the Putnam’s self-published travel guide, North to Adventure in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

The Putnam’s photographs capture the landscape of the Copper Country, an important part of the Michigan Tech experience.

Keweenaw Exhibit
Location: Hallway just outside the main entrance to the Archives Reading Room

This exhibit is an installation of photos related to University and community history. The exhibit is divided into four series; Early Keweenaw, Changing Campus, Town & Gone, and Copper Mines and Miners. This exhibit is in memory of our former Student Assistant, Jonathan DeCleene (1987-2007). Financial support for this exhibit was provided by Jonathan’s family, Gloria Kennedy and Valerie DeCleene, and the Friends of the Van Pelt Library.

1975 Apollo-Soyuz Spaceflight Exhibit
Location: Alumni House

The final flight of the Apollo program was the first spaceflight in which spacecraft from different nations docked in space. In July 1975, a U.S. Apollo spacecraft carrying a crew of three docked with a Russian Soyuz spacecraft with its crew of two. Michigan Technological University has a unique connection to this space station mission. Former Head and Professor of Metallurgical Engineering, Raymond Smith, was friends with Donald (Deke) Slayton, one of the astronauts on the flight. A Michigan Tech banner was brought into space on this mission and the original banner, along with some other memorabilia related to the Apollo-Soyuz spaceflight will be on display at the Alumni House. This exhibit was a partnership between the Alumni Association and the University Archives.

New Microformat in the Archives

Two brand new ScanPro 1100 digital microformat readers have been installed in the Archives’ reading room this week. Similar to the ScanPro 2000 that has been available on the second floor of the Van Pelt and Opie Library, the Archives’ new readers have a plethora of features that will enhance users’ research experience.

Some of these features include: a 26 mega pixel camera, automatic scan options, optical character recognition (OCR) software, and automatic and manual image enhancing options. Users will also be able to scan microformat content to USB drives, the Archives printer and to email.

These machines will allow greater accessibility to microformat materials through the readers’ high end features – especially the auto scan and OCR capabilities, which will allow patrons to scan multiple pages of materials to PDF and search for specific words within those PDFs.

Microfilmed materials housed in the Archives include but are not limited to: over 70 newspapers local to the Copper Country, Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps and local census records.

 
For more information, feel free to visit the archives, give us a call at 906-487-2505 or send us an email at copper@mtu.edu.

Baraga Resident Donates World War I Era Collection

Ellen Raymond, center, donated her father-in-law’s materials to the University Archives after a suggestion from her friend, Sharon Eklund, left. Archivist Beth Russell, right, formally accepted the donation.  (Photo courtesy of Tech Today)

The Michigan Technological University Archives and Copper Country Historical Collections was pleased to welcome a new collection this week thanks to a local resident. Ellen Raymond, a 94 year old from Baraga, visited the archives on Tuesday, July 8 and donated a family collection of World War I era documents and ephemera.

After finding a stash of documents and photos in her closet, Raymond wasn’t quite sure what to do, but her friend Sharon Eklund, a volunteer for Little Brothers Friends of the Elderly who looks in on Raymond, had a pretty good idea. Eklund suggested donating the materials to the Michigan Tech Archives and that is exactly what they did. After coordinating the donation with Archivist Beth Russell, Raymond and Eklund arrived earlier this week to present the material and formally pass ownership to the archives. The donation ceremony was attended by library staff, Little Brothers representatives, and various journalists.

The collection is a file that had been preserved by Raymond’s father-in-law, Harvey William Raymond. It includes his diploma from Baraga High School, a certificate of mine safety from what was then the Michigan College of Mines, correspondence between H.W. Raymond and his fiancée, and several photos, one of particular importance to Michigan Tech as it showcases a class photo taken in 1918 of new recruits at Michigan Tech’s military training facility.

The Michigan Tech Archives does not have many documents or photos from the World War I era so this donation is an important one to broaden our holdings. Archivist Beth Russell called this a “wonderful collection” and it is a perfect example how community donations can enhance the materials we have to offer researchers. The collection will be arranged and cataloged to make it available to researchers in the archives and there are possible plans to have some of the photos scanned and placed in the Keweenaw Digital Archives, where they can be widely accessible even to those unable to visit the archives in person. Overall, Raymond is delighted that her father-in-law’s papers have found their way to a historical collection where the documents and photos will be preserved for future generations. “I think it’s great, and I think he would be proud,” she said, to know that his papers have found their way to a place such as this. Please monitor our blog and Facebook page for news on when this collection is available for use.

Thanks to the generosity and thoughtfulness of local donors the archives is able to collect, preserve, and make available resources of historical importance.  If you have a collection you think may be suitable to donate to the archives, please contact Lindsay Hiltunen at lehalkol@mtu.edu or by calling (906) 487-3209 or (906) 487-2505.  Inquiries about donations can also be directed to Ellen Marks, University Librarian and Library Director, at ebmarks@mtu.edu or by calling (906) 487-2500.

Female Spaces, Working Class Communities, and the Labor Movement

Please join us for visiting scholar Shannon Kirkwood at 4:00 pm on Thursday July 17 in the East Reading Room of the Van Pelt and Opie Library on the Michigan Technological University campus. This event is free of charge and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.

In this presentation, Kirkwood will address the politics of female space in a male-dominated labor movement, as well as class consciousness based home, kin and neighborhood networks. These themes will be discussed in the contexts of the Copper Country, Seattle and Glasgow.

Kirkwood is a doctoral student at Central Michigan University and a recent presenter at “Retrospection and Respect: the 1913-1914 Mining/Labor Strike Symposium of 2014”. Her research has focused on the participation of miners’ wives in the 1913-14 Copper Strike and the indirect relationship these women had with the mining companies, their relationships with their men, and their relationships with each other.

Kirkwood’s research visit and presentation are supported by a travel grant from the Friends of the Van Pelt and Opie Library. Since 1988, the Michigan Tech Archives Travel Grant program has helped scholars advance their research by supporting travel to the manuscript collections at the Archives.

For more information, feel free to call the Michigan Tech Archives at 906-487-2505, email at copper@mtu.edu, or visit them on the web at http://www.lib.mtu.edu/mtuarchives/.

Beth Russell Leaves for Maine

Archivist Beth Russell has accepted a new position as Archivist and Special Collections Librarian at the University of Maine’s Raymond H. Fogler Library. Her last day at the Michigan Tech Archives will be July 11.

Beth originally came to work at the Michigan Tech Archives for a NHPRC grant funded project which involved creating MARC records for collection level cataloging of the Archive’s entire collection holdings. The project lasted two years, but Beth was able to transition into a full-time

Bon Voyage, Beth!

Archivist position in 2011.  Her experience with archival description and cataloging standards has helped improve access to the Archives’ manuscript collections.

Years of assisting patrons with research and working in an Archives that has a local history and University focus will serve Beth well in her new position. She hopes to model public history outreach endeavors to some of the Tech Archive’s past programs.

This is not the first time that Beth has lived in Maine, and she looks forward to returning to the beautiful coastal region. She plans on reconnecting with old friends and looks forward to once again being involved in recreational sailing and enjoying local seafood.

Come say your goodbyes at the Library’s farewell party next week, June 25, 2014 from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm on the Rovano Plaza. For more information, read our blog post!

http://blogs.mtu.edu/archives/2014/06/18/farewell-party-for-van-pelt-and-opie-library-staff-members/

We will miss you, Beth!

Farewell Party for Van Pelt and Opie Library Staff Members

Date: June 25, 2014

Time: 2:00pm – 4:00pm

Location: Rovano Plaza outside of the Library Building (Opie Reading Room in case of rain)

Campus and community members are invited to a farewell party on Wednesday, June 25, from 2:00pm to 4:00pm on the Rovano Plaza, located on the East side of the Library Building near the Campus Cafe. If the weather is not suitable for anoutdoor gathering, the party will be held in the Opie Reading Room. The Michigan Tech and Copper Country Archives will be closed for the duration of the party, but will open again afterwards from 4:00pm to 5:00pm.

We are celebrating the next prestigious phases of the careers of Beth Russell, Archivist, who will be joining the Special Collections Department of the Raymond H. Fogler Library at the University of Maine in Orono as an Archivist and Special Collections Librarian.  Beth had made outstanding contributions to the University Archives and Copper Country Historical Collections.

Rachael Bussert, also a member of Archives staff, has successfully concluded a two-year grant from the National Historical Publications Records Commission as the Senior Processing Archivist. Rachael is going to work as the Congressional Papers Archivist for the Hamilton Library at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. Both Beth and Rachael also made substantial contributions to recovery efforts following the fire in the Archives’ closed stacks in 2012.

We will also wish a fond farewell to Ben Bussert, who will be heading to Hawaii with Rachael. Ben has been a specialist in customer relations, and was instrumental in enabling the library to initiate its 24 hour operation last October.

The Library’s Associate Director for Education and Research, Margaret Phillips, will be leaving the area for family reasons. She will continue to lead the library in the integration of information literacy among Michigan Tech’s educational departments, while continuing to work with the university level assessment programs and contributing to the library’s strategic plan.

We hope to see you on the Rovano Plaza!

Michigan Tech Archives to Host “Fourth Thursday In History” Presentation June 26th

When: June 26th at 7:00 PM

Where: East Reading Room

Van Pelt and Opie Library

The upcoming Fourth Thursday In History event will be hosted by the Michigan Tech Archives on Thursday, June 26th in the Van Pelt and Opie Library’s East Reading Room. The talk, to be presented by Larry Molloy will focus on the Detroit Publishing Company’s photographs of the local area.

Between 1900-1910 the Detroit Publishing Company photographed much of the Copper Country, including photos of towns, mines, mills, smelters, trains, etc. Over 60 of these images have been digitized as high-resolution images by the Library of Congress. Join Larry Molloy as he examines many of these images and uses them to identify historic sites and buildings. Larry will also discuss the Detroit Publishing Company Collection and how an individual can gain access to these and other Library of Congress images.

The Fourth Thursdays In History, organized by the Keweenaw National Historical Park, are presentations on local or regional history. Programs are free and open to the public. For more information, including directions or site accessibility, contact either:

Keweenaw National Historical Park

(906) 337-3168

www.nps.gov/kewe

or

Michigan Tech Archives

(906) 487-2505

Email at: copper@mtu.edu

The Heart of the Copper Country, Calumet, Mich.
Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.
Shelden St., Houghton, Mich.
Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Divisions Washington, D.C.