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Fred Stonehouse, James Paquette receives prestigious awards

ESCANABA — Frederick Stonehouse, the Finnish American Heritage Center and James Paquette won top honors at the Historical Society of Michigan’s 70th annual Upper Peninsula History Conference last year for their outstanding efforts to preserve and promote the history of the Upper Peninsula.

Stonehouse, who hails from Marquette, received the Charles Follo Award, which acknowledges the work of an individual. The Superior Award, which recognizes the achievements of historical societies, museums and other history-related organizations, was awarded to the Finnish American Heritage Center located in Hancock.

Paquette, who hails from Negaunee, received the History Hero Award, which celebrates the impact of an individual outside of the history field for his or her significant contributions to Michigan’s history.

From the extremely high attendance numbers; to a packed room for the opening keynote “Inventing the Outdoors: The Marble Arms Company” with Dennis Pace of the Michigan History Museum; to popular sessions such as “The Dock Behind the Lock: Escanaba’s World War II Ore Dock,” “Braving the Waves: Life-Saving Service on the Shipwreck Coast” and “Blind Tigers and Police Raids: Prohibition in Delta County;” to the culmination of the conference with the Upper Peninsula History Awards Banquet-this year’s conference in Escanaba was a multifaceted success.

THE 2019 CHARLES FOLLO AWARD

The Charles Follo Award was established in 1979 and is named in honor of Charles Follo, a school teacher from Escanaba who worked to establish historical societies and promote the history of the Upper Peninsula. This award is presented annually by the Historical Society of Michigan to the individual who has made the most outstanding contribution to the preservation and promotion of U.P. history.

The Society awarded the Charles Follo Award to Frederick Stonehouse of Marquette, Michigan. Stonehouse has written more than 30 books on maritime history; served as a consultant for both the U.S. National Park Service and Parks Canada; and appeared on television as an on-air expert for National Geographic, History Channel, and Fox Family. Stonehouse is president of the board of directors of the Marquette Maritime Museum, a member of the national board of directors of the U.S. Life-Saving Service Heritage Association, and a former member of the Michigan Iron Industry Museum Advisory Board. Stonehouse plays an active role in the Marquette community, where he serves as city mayor and teaches at Northern Michigan University.

THE 2019 SUPERIOR AWARD

Established by the Historical Society of Michigan in 2006, the Superior Award recognizes historical societies, museums and other historical organizations that preserve and advance U.P. history.

The 2019 Superior Award recipient was the Finnish American Heritage Center in Hancock. In 1990, the Finnish American Heritage Center opened its doors at Suomi College (now Finlandia University). The center serves as a cultural focal point and a national center for exhibits, lectures, musical performances and community programs. It is also the home of the Finnish American Historical Archive, the Finnish American Folk School, and the monthly newspaper The Finnish American Reporter.

THE 2019 HISTORY HERO AWARD

The History Hero Award is bestowed by the executive leadership team of the Historical Society of Michigan to a person who, while usually not working directly in the history field, has made significant and lasting contributions that align with the mission of the Historical Society of Michigan and who has given a lifetime of dedication to the preservation and promotion of Michigan’s rich and storied history.

The Society awarded the History Hero Award to James Paquette of Negaunee. Paquette was a very involved member of the Historical Society of Michigan’s board of trustees from 2012 to 2018. Among many other achievements, he has written a book about the discovery and excavation of the Paleo-Indian Gorto site in Michigan, co-authored several research papers, and given several talks throughout Michigan on a variety of historical topics. Paquette now serves as an archaeological and cultural resource consultant for the Marquette Regional History Center and Museum

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