The Michigan Tech Archives recently installed its traveling exhibit, Becoming the Pride of the Upper Peninsula: The Formative Years of the Copper Range Railroad, at the Ontonagon County Historical Society in Ontonagon. The six exhibit panels will be on view at the OCHS on an open-ended loan this summer. The exhibit may be viewed onsite at their museum, located at 422 River Street in downtown Ontonagon. The museum is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Tuesday-Saturday. For more information on how to visit the museum, please contact their staff at (906) 884-6165.
Becoming the Pride of the Upper Peninsula was first installed at the Van Pelt and Opie Library from October 2018 – May 2019. The panels then traveled to various museums and historical societies across the Upper Great Lakes from June 2019 – June 2020. It was most recently on display at the Carnegie Museum of the Keweenaw from fall 2020-May 2022. The exhibit contains six panels that document the early years of the Copper Range Railroad, from the founding of the road until its initial expansion beyond the main line. The exhibit also provides a glimpse beyond the formative years, including the impact of the decline of mining in the area, the school train runs, and the dissolution of the company.
While this project aims to highlight the early years of the railroad and its impact on the Copper Country, there are further resources available for research in the Michigan Tech Archives that pertain to the railroad and the Copper Range Company.
The physical exhibit is available to be loaned to partner host sites on a monthly basis by contacting the university archivist, Lindsay Hiltunen, at firstname.lastname@example.org or calling (906) 487-3209.
Becoming the Pride of the Upper Peninsula was made possible in part by the Keweenaw National Historical Park Advisory Commission Heritage Grant Program. All research was conducted in the Michigan Technological University Archives and Copper Country Historical Collections.
Any views, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this exhibition do not necessarily reflect those of the Keweenaw National Historical Park or the KNHP Advisory Commission.
The Engine 29 visual identity for this exhibit was inspired by and adapted from images held at the Michigan Technological University Archives and Copper Country Historical Collections and available in the Copper Country Historical Images database.