2019 Mining History Association Tour

Michigan Iron Industry Museum,
Michigan History Center,
Negaunee, Michigan
June 8, 2019


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The Michigan Iron Mining Industry Museum tells the story of the discovery and development of the iron ore deposits.  The museum overlooks the site of the Carp River Forge, one of the early attempts to produce iron locally.

Troy Henderson from the Michigan History Center introduces the video presentation, “Iron Spirits: Life on the Michigan Iron Range.”

The Main Gallery of the museum allows visitors to trace the historical development of the Michigan iron industry from discovery of the ore deposits, through mining and transportation, and various attempts to operate forge and smelting furnaces.





Miners are dwarfed by the size of the open stope at the Cliffs Shaft Mine.

A side-dump ore car from the Mather B Mine with miners for scale.

One of the unusual objects on display is a solar compass invented by William Austin Burt one of the early surveyors in the Upper Peninsula.  Accurate surveys were needed to determine land ownership.


The solar compass enabled surveyors to find True North in areas where the iron deposits made the magnetic compass useless.


Photos Courtesy Mike Kaas.

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