The Michigan Iron Industry Museum, located in Negaunee, will host a full schedule of family fun and educational activities for visitors of all ages this summer. Whether tastes run from music to classic cars to artillery demonstrations to historic bike tours on the Iron Ore Heritage Trail, visitors to the museum can expect a “Pure Michigan” experience.
In addition, a July/August weekday program series will cover presentations on the Copper Strike of 1913-14, local antique bottles, U.P. folk music, Iron Mountain’s Cornish pumping engine, and iron ore pelletizing pioneer Tsu Ming Han. All weekday programs begin at 2 p.m. in the museum auditorium.
Located in forested ravines nine miles west of Marquette, the Michigan Iron Industry Museum tells the story of Michigan’s three iron ranges and the hard-working immigrants who helped build modern America. Overlooking the Carp River and the site of the region’s first iron forge, exhibits and outdoor trails interpret the large-scale capital and human investment that made Michigan an industrial leader. The 22-minute, high-definition film “Iron Spirits – Life on the Michigan Iron Range,” shown seven times daily, presents the colorful story of immigrant and community life in the Upper Peninsula.
Visitors will also find a wide selection of unique books, games, jewelry, apparel and other Michigan-related specialty items at the Museum Store.
Museum events are funded in part by visitor donations and the Michigan Iron Industry Museum Advisory Board. Scheduled activities for 2013 include:
- May 19 – Museum Open House, with “White Water” in concert at 1 and 2:30 p.m., featuring traditional music from Michigan’s past. Light refreshments.
- June 16 – “Iron, Steel and the Automobile: 24th Annual Antique Auto Exhibit,” featuring more than 50 vintage automobiles and light trucks from the 1910s to 1969; live jazz and Swing performances by the “Bluffs Orchestra.”
- July 9 – Lecture Series: “Community in Conflict: A History of the 1913-14 Michigan Copper Strike and the Italian Hall Tragedy,” presented by author and labor historian Gary Kaunonen.
- July 11 – Iron Ore Heritage Bike Tour. Registration required.
- July 16 – Lecture Series: “Antique Bottles of Marquette County,” presented by Bill Van Kosky.
- July 18 – Iron Ore Heritage Bike Tour. Registration required.
- July 23 – Lecture Series: “Alan Lomax and Collecting U.P. Folk Music,” presented by Daniel Truckey, director of Beaumier Heritage Center at Northern Michigan University (NMU).
- July 25 – Iron Ore Heritage Bike Tour. Registration required.
- July 30 – Lecture Series: “Iron Mountain’s Cornish Pumping Engine and the Mines it Dewatered,” presented by Iron Mountain historian William Cummings.
- Aug. 3 and 4 – “Iron Ore and the Civil War,” a living history encampment featuring military and civilian camp life during the Civil War; campfire cooking demonstrations; music; and children’s activities.
- Aug. 6 – Lecture Series: “Bats and the Mines: An Update on White Nose Syndrome,” presented by Bill Scullon, biologist with the Department of Natural Resources.
- Aug. 13 – Lecture Series: “Archaeology on the Cusp of a Changing World: An Early Fur Trade Era Archaeological Site in Marquette County,” presented by Dr. John Anderton, NMU.
- Aug. 20 – Lecture Series: “Tsu Ming Han: Pelletizing Pioneer,” presented by Dr. Russell Magnaghi, NMU.
The Michigan Iron Industry Museum is one of 11 nationally accredited museums administered by the Michigan Historical Center, an agency within the Department of Natural Resources. It is located at 73 Forge Rd. in Negaunee Township, overlooking the site of the Carp River Forge, a pioneer industrial site listed on the National Register of Historic Places. For more information about museum programs call (906) 475-7857 or visit online at www.michigan.gov/ironindustrymuseum.
In May, the museum is open daily from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Starting June 1, the museum is open daily from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Admission is free; donations are encouraged.
The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is committed to the conservation, protection, management, use and enjoyment of the state’s natural and cultural resources for current and future generations. For more information, go to www.michigan.gov/dnr.