Symposium focuses on U.P. history

History lovers from around the area got the chance to spend the day learning a little more about the Upper Peninsula.

The 13th Sonderegger Symposium is an all–day event held Friday inside Mead Auditorium on the campus of Northern Michigan University.

The symposium focuses on historical events that took place in the Upper Peninsula and typically revolves around one subject.

The focus this year was water.

One topic covered Lake Michigan and the southern shore of the U.P., including Drummond Island.

“The largest ethnic group that was out there (on the island) was Irish immigrants,” Dr. Russell Magnaghi said.  “The Mormons did try to establish a colony here (on Drummond Island).  They had some folks that went over there to establish some settlements.  And when the whole thing collapsed, some of the Mormons left and many settled along the shore (of Lake Michigan).”

The event was free to the public, and included presentations on early sport fishing, the history of the Dead River, and the Soo Locks.