Superiorland Yesterdays

EDITOR’S NOTE: Superiorland Yesterdays is prepared by the reference staff at the Peter White Public Library in Marquette.

30 years ago

MARQUETTE — Quiet on the Set, one of Public TV 13’s three annual fundraisers, is underway. The public television station, based at Northern Michigan University, holds a silent fundraising drive each August and two traditional on-air fundraisers in December and March. During August’s event, programs aren’t interrupted for on-air pledge appeals. Instead, viewer contributions are requested only during regularly scheduled station breaks. “We combine the use of direct mail and telemarketing appeals and ask viewers to mail rather than phone in their pledges,” said Bruce Turner, WNMU-TV station manager. In 1988, 3,000 people contributed a total of $80,000 during the August campaign. According to Frida Waara, marketing director, “This year’s campaign must raise $90,000 and 1,500 new partners to keep on track with program expenses, which are expected to reach $300,000 for 1990.” Special programs scheduled for this month’s fundraiser include shows about sharks, grizzly bears and soap box derby. Music and dance specials feature Linda Ronstadt, Bob Crosby, Loretta Lynn, Crystal Gale and the national drum and bugle corp competition. Upper Peninsula merchants help pay for special programming during the event, said Turner.

60 years ago

HOUGHTON/HANCOCK — A 3.5 million-pound center span for the 10 million dollar vertical lift bridge under construction on U.S. 41 across the Portage Ship Canal between Hancock and Houghton will be floated into position in late August and attached to the two 200-foot high tower piers. State Highway Commissioner John C. Mackie says the two-level span, which will carry train traffic on the lower level and cars and pedestrians on a second level, will weigh 4.5 million pounds when the concrete roadway and rails are in place and will rise to a height of 100 feet to allow passage of Great Lakes shipping. The bridge, believed to be the world’s heaviest vertical lift span, is scheduled for completion Dec. 15. The existing swing span was built in 1895 and will be removed.