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.

Travel Grants Awarded to Five Scholars

The Michigan Tech Archives and Copper Country Historical Collections has selected five recipients for the 2014 Research Travel Award. This year’s grant recipients take a fresh approach to the rich array of material housed in the Archives.

“]
Forests - Estivant Pines [Image #:MS051-040-007-002
Cameron Burd, a graduate student at Central Michigan University will explore environmental activism in the Lake Superior region during the modern environmental movement of the 1960s and 1970s and document those who attempted to control the natural fate of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

Philip Hartmeyer is a graduate student pursuing maritime studies at East Carolina University.  Hartmeyer will focus his research on the vessel “Pewabic” and the crucial role shipping played in the lives of the Keweenaw’s population, its copper mines, and its civil development in the 1860s.

“]
Ships - Osceola [Image #:ACC-220-1984-007-030-403-003

Shannon 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.   She will continue her research in the participation of miners’ wives in the 1913-1914 Copper Strike and the indirect relationship these women had with the mining companies, their relationships with their men, and their relationships with each other.

Paul Lubotina, visiting assistant professor at Middle Tennessee State University and also a participant in the symposium will examine the role Croatian immigrants played in the 1913-1914 Copper Strike.  He will examine the Seeberville murders and try to shed light on whether mining officials had a more compelling reason other than trespassing for the death of two immigrant laborers.

Mark Worrall is an independent researcher working on the history of the Mineral Range Railroad’s South Range Branch.  He will examine the geographical and anthropological setting of the line, its history, its operations, notable events on the line, and the eventual abandonment of the line.

Since its inception over ten years ago, the grant has enabled more than twenty researchers to travel to Houghton from the United States, Canada, and Europe, to examine the unique social and cultural resources in the Archives collections. Past grant recipients have studied a wide variety of topics, such as the use of images and models by mining engineers to manage complex work sites above and below ground; the role that fraternal orders have played in Lake Superior mining communities; and the adoption of the English language by European transplants to Michigan’s Copper Country. This year’s awards continue a tradition of supported research using the manuscript collections curated by the Michigan Tech Archives.

“]
Mineral Range Railroad [Image #:MS042-999-T-264
The grant program is financially supported by the Friends of the Van Pelt Library. This year’s award committee included Larry Lankton and Susan Martin, retired professors from the Michigan Tech Department of  Social Sciences, Don Durfee, also from the Department of Social Sciences and the Friends of the Van Pelt Library, and Beth Russell, representing the Michigan Tech Archives.  For further information about the awards program or about the collections of the Michigan Tech Archives, call 487-2505.

Symposium Travel Grant Awards Announced

the 1913-1914 Mining/Labor Strike Symposium of 2014
Join us April 11-12, 2014.

The University Archives and Copper Country Historical Collections has selected nine recipients for the 2014 Symposium Travel Award. These grant recipients will be among the many scholars and researchers participating in “Retrospection & Respect: Michigan’s 1913-1914 Mining/Labor Strike Symposium,” to be held in Houghton, Michigan, April 11-12, 2014, on the occasion of the centennial of the cessation of the 1913-1914 Western Federation of Miners labor strike against copper mining companies in the Copper Country of Upper Michigan.

John Beck, from Michigan State University, will explore Father Dietz and the Catholic Church within the history of the 1913-1914 Copper Miners’ Strike.  Thomas Mackaman, from Kings’ College (PA), will look at new immigrants and American industry in 1914 and Erik Nordberg, from the Michigan Humanities Council and formerly Michigan Tech’s University Archivist, will present a paper on company houses along the picket line.

Roger Burt, from the University of Devon (UK) will present on the role of fraternal organizations in mining communities.  Peter Krats, from Western University (Ontario), will explore ethnic identity in the Keweenaw and Nickel Belts to 1930.  Peter Lubotina, from Middle Tennessee State University will profile Teofilo Petriella, a Marxist revolutionary.

Shannon Rebecca Kirkwood, from Central Michigan University, will explore gender and feminine strategies in the 1913 copper strike.  Patrick Allan Pospisek, from Grand Valley State University, will present on federal authority and the development of corporate mining from 1807-1847 and Ryan Driskell Tate, from Rutgers University, will present on cross-class cooperation in the 1916 Iron Range strike.

“]
Banner from the 1913-1914 Copper Miners' Strike [Image #:Acc-400-12-13-1988-01-08-15

Funded by the Friends of the Van Pelt Library since its inception over 10 years ago, the grant has enabled more than 20 researchers to travel to Houghton from the United States, Canada, and Europe, to examine the unique social and cultural resources in the Archives collections. Past grant recipients have studied a wide variety of topics, such as the use of images and models by mining engineers to manage complex work sites above and below ground; the role that fraternal orders have played in Lake Superior mining communities; and the adoption of the English language by European transplants to Michigan’s Copper Country. This year, the Friends of the Library provided generous support for competitive travel awards for the symposium.

The award committee included Larry Lankton, Professor Emeritus from the Michigan Tech’s Department of Social Sciences, Susan Martin, Professor Emerita from the Department of Social Sciences, Don Durfee, Friends of the Van Pelt Library and Social Sciences, and Beth Russell, University Archives. For further information about the awards program or about the collections of the University Archives: 906- 487-2505; www.mtu.edu/library/archives/ or copper@mtu.edu

Two Events, One Experience

1913 Copper Miners Strike : Children's Parade

100 years ago, our nation was rocked by incidents that shook our community to its core. Labor challenged management, neighbor fought neighbor, and children died.  Finnish immigrants played a major role in the strike at the heart of this turmoil, and have continued to be a major influence in the community today. Thus, it is only natural that the two events investigating these themes be brought together to form a unified experience.

Retrospection and Respect: 1913-1914 Mining/Labor Strike Symposium of 2014

Retrospection & Respect: Michigan’s 1913-1914 Mining/Labor Strike Symposium is to be held in Houghton, Michigan, April 11-12, 2014, on the occasion of the centennial of the cessation of the 1913-1914 Western Federation of Miners labor strike against copper mining companies in the Copper Country of Upper Michigan. Presenters will explore the role of labor organizations in the historical and contemporary American and European mining industries, the effect of historical European immigration on labor organization, the impacts of early twentieth century labor organizational practices and strikes on American managerial practices in mining and other industries, and women’s activism in early twentieth century labor organization in mining and other industries, as well as other topics connecting issues of ethnicity, identity, class, gender, and other cultural divisions to civic discourse and the historic struggle for civil liberties within industry.  The symposium is co-sponsored by Michigan Technological University’s Archives and Copper Country Historical Collections, the Department of Social Sciences, and the Department of Humanities, the Keweenaw National Historical Park, and Finlandia University’s Finnish American Heritage Center and Historical Archives..

FinnForum X: Work, Workers, and the Finn Factor in 20th Century Labor Relations: Strikes, Political Economy, and Transnationalism

The symposium is being held in conjunction with the 2014 meeting of FinnForum, a professional association of researchers who investigate northern European migration to the United States. Presenters will address a range of disciplinary perspectives on topics such as fraternal organizations in labor movements, the development of corporate power in mining districts, ethnic identity, and image-making through labor-themed music.  FinnForum X is sponsored by the Institute of Migration in Turku, Finland and the University of Turku’s History Department, along with Finlandia University’s Finnish American Heritage Center and Historical Archives, with support from Michigan Technological University’s Department of Humanities.

Special Exhibits and Events

To commemorate the event, several special exhibits will be on display in the area. The “Tumult and Tragedy: Michigan’s 1913-1914 Copper Strike” exhibit, produced by the Michigan Tech Archives, will be on display in the first floor lobby of the J. Robert Van Pelt and John and Ruanne Opie Library on Michigan Tech’s campus. This exhibit chronicles one of the confrontations between organized labor and mining companies. There will be even more to see at Finlandia University’s Finnish American Historical Archives’ reading room.  Displayed for the first time, courtesy of the Keweenaw National Historical Park,  there will be an exhibit of the two lithographs that were hanging on either side of the Italian Hall lodge room stage the night of the Christmas Eve disaster in 1913. One features the Italian royal family, circa 1908, and the other depicts a montage of the five founders of the modern Italian state, circa 1905.  In addition to the exhibits currently on display, the Finnish American Historical Archives’ will be featuring artifacts from the Italian Hall, as well as “People Place and Time: Michigan’s Copper Country Through the Lens of J. W. Nara (1874-1934),” produced by the Michigan Tech Archives.

On Thursday, there will two showings of a special feature for the Nordic Film Series at Finlandia University, the film “To My Son in Spain: Finnish Canadians in the Spanish Civil War.” Filmmaker Dr. Saku Pinta will be present to field questions.  Friday morning, the Finnish American Heritage Center will be sponsoring a morning open house with refreshments.  Later in the day, FinnForum X will be offering a 3 hour tour of the area on the Red Jacket Trolley company, departing from Finlandia University.

Registration

Attendees have the option of registering for any combination of three separate portions of the joint event. Registration for the presentation series is $30.00 and includes a Friday reception featuring special guest speaker David Salmela, concurrent sessions on Saturday from the 1913-1914 Mining/ Labor Strike series and FinnForum X series, as well as a light networking breakfast and lunch.  Registration for the keynote dinner, to be held Saturday evening, is $25.00.  FinnForum X is also offering a 3 hour tour of the area on the Red Jacket Trolley from 1:00-4:00 on Thursday for $15.00.  Seats for the trolley tour are limited, so attendees are advised to reserve a spot as soon as they are able. The registration deadline is April 9, 2014.  Walk-in registrants are welcome, but  meal tickets will not be available. Register now using our online store.

Symposium Speakers Announced

The  speakers for Retrospection & Respect: The 1913-1914 Mining/Labor Strike Symposium of 2014” have been announced!  FinnForum X speakers will be added soon.

Full conference registration is $30.00 and includes Friday reception and Saturday sessions for both the 1913-1914 Mining/ Labor Strike and FinnForum X concurrent sessions, and includes breakfast and lunch. Keynote dinner reservations must be made separately.

Registration opens February 15, 2014 at Registration, 906-487-2505, or copper@mtu.edu. The full conference registration deadline is April 9, 2014. Walk-in registrations are welcome, but meals tickets will not be available.

the 1913-1914 Mining/Labor Strike Symposium of 2014
Join us April 11-12, 2014, running concurrently with FinnForum X.

The following topics will be covered:

John Beck Co-director, Our Daily Work/Our Daily Lives, Associate Professor, Labor Education Program, School of Human Resources and Labor Relations, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI :

“Father Dietz, the Catholic Church and the 1913 Michigan Copper Strike”

Roger Burt, Professor Emeritus, History Department, College of Humanities, University of Exeter, Devon, UK :

“The role of fraternal organisation in migration and informal Labour organisations in mining communities: Cornwall, the Keweenaw and California Compared”

Peter Kratz, Professor, History Department, University of Western Ontario, London, Canada :

Mainari, Farmari, Lumperjäkki, Piika : “Ethnic Identity” and Earning a Living in the Keweenaw and Nickel Belts to 1930″

Paul Lubotina, Assistant Professor, Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro, TN :

“Teofilo Petriella: Marxist Revolutionary”

Thomas Mackaman, Assistant Professor of History, King’s College, Wilkes-Barre, PA :

“Our lives, our thoughts and our allegiance : New immigrants and American industry in 1914″

Alice Margerum, Houghton, MI :

“Beneath the Starry Flag: the Flags and Songs of the 1913-14 Michigan Copper Strike as Image-making in the American Labor Movement”

Erik Nordberg, Executive Director, Michigan Humanities Council, Lansing, MI :

“Company Houses along the Picket Line”

Brendan Pelto, Student, Michigan Technological University, Houghton, MI :

“The 1968-1969 Copper Strike”

Patrick Allan Pospisek, Department of History, Grand Valley State University, Allendale, MI :

“Federal Authority and the Development of Corporate Mining, 1807-1847″

Ryan Tate, PhD student, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ :

“Flash in the Pan: Cross-Class Cooperation in 1916 Iron Range Strike”

Joanne Thomas, Allouez, MI :

“100 Years to Red Jacket – and Annie : An Extraordinary Mass”

The Risks of Radicalism

The following letter, discovered in MS-080, Copper Range Company Records, shows the close connection between the copper mining companies and local government.

Unfortunately, the I. W. W. book was not included with the letter. The context for this letter (given below), derived from various sources in the Michigan Tech Archives, demonstrates the value of having an array of different sources at the same research facility.

  • D. L. Robinson: Member of the prominent law firm Rees, Robinson, and Petermann.
  • I. W. W.: The Industrial Workers of the World were a radical left labor union that was, at the time of this letter, growing in strength across the United States.
  • Mr. Slagg: Milo J. Slagg was the principal of the agricultural school from 1915 to 1919.
  • Agricultural School: The Otter Lake Agricultural School in Tapiola (renamed the John A. Doelle Agricultural School in 1922).
  • Alex Pohja: Probably the same person as the Alex Ponja listed by the 1916-1917 Polk directory as a resident of Trimountain and laborer in the Trimountain Mine.
  • John A. Doelle: Longtime superintendent of the Houghton and Portage Lake public schools.
  • Bill: William H. Schacht, the new general manager of the Copper Range Company and Alex Pohja’s boss.

We don’t know if Schacht took any action on this matter, but it is easy to see the potential risks of expressing radical opinions if your job could be threatened by the actions of your child.

This project is supported with a grant from the National Historical Publications & Records Commission.

NHPRC