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Superior History

Marquette’s ship fever epidemic, 1849

The specter of disease hung over Marquette even before it was founded. In 1849, when members of the Marquette Iron Mining Company travelled west from Worcester, Massachusetts, on their way to set up operations near the Carp River, they stopped in Detroit to wait for their machinery to arrive. ...

Own a piece of Voelker history

John D. Voelker (1903-1991) is best known for his novel “Anatomy of a Murder,” published in 1958. This gripping courtroom drama was made into a movie by the same name in 1959. Director Otto Preminger (1905-1986), famed for his censorship-defying and edgy style, brought Voelker’s story ...

Building bricks of early Marquette County

MARQUETTE — Marquette is known for its sandstone architecture but bricks were also manufactured in Marquette for many years. The first recorded venture dates to around 1865. Two local men, Cornelius Donkersley and Samuel Ely, established and financed a sand brick factory based on a plan ...

Thread, paper, needle

When early Jesuits such as Father Claude Dablon and Father Claude-Jean Allouez travelled to what is now Michigan, they recorded their journeys in hand bound books. These journals recorded their observations and encounters during their travels, enough for Dablon to produce many reports in ...

Marquette’s forgotten war hero

MARQUETTE — Over the years there have been monuments erected and memorials built for Marquette residents who have died fighting for their country. The name of one of Marquette’s biggest war heroes, though, is not on them. Calvin “Jimmy” Bleau was born in Detroit in 1926, the son ...

Marquette’s 1878 diphtheria epidemic

MARQUETTE — Called the “strangling angel of children,” diphtheria is a serious bacterial infection caused by corynebacterium diphtheriae and usually affecting the mucous membranes of the nose and throat. It typically causes a sore throat, fever, a barking cough like croup, swollen ...

When Ishpeming/Negaunee played Green Bay Packers

ISHPEMING — On Oct. 19, 1919, a crisp fall day was unfolding at Union Park in Ishpeming. The newly formed Green Bay Packers were in town for their first away game, but things were not looking bright. They were playing the Ishpeming-Negaunee Twin City Eleven, known to be formidable around ...

Mah-je-ge-zhik was remarkable man

Though he played a central role in shaping Marquette County history, we know relatively little about Mah-je-ge-zhik (died circa 1857). A respected member of the local Ojibwe community, he helped put into motion events that resulted in the iron boom that made Marquette County a destination for ...

Great American archaeologist from Marquette

MARQUETTE — Alfred Vincent Kidder was one of the most influential archaeologists of the twentieth century. During his lifetime he was regarded as the preeminent American archaeology scholar. Specializing in prehistoric cultures of the southwestern United States, Kidder pioneered the use of ...

Rolling Mill Mine disaster Part 2

Editor’s note: This article was adapted from one that was originally published in the USW Local 4974’s The Miners’ Voice, August 1982 NEGAUNEE — Last week’s article described a free-falling mine cage at the Rolling Mill Mine in Negaunee on Sept. 20, 1907. Several of the victims ...

Rolling Mill Mine disaster Part 1

Editor’s note: This article was adapted from one that was originally published in the USW Local 4974’s The Miners’ Voice, August 1982 NEGAUNEE — “A mining accident attended by the greatest loss of life in the history of the Marquette Range occurred at the Rolling Mill mine, located ...

S.S. Maryland’s moment in time

Some historical changes happen slowly, unnoticeably. Other times we can identify an exact moment of change. One of those changes came on Sept. 12, 1953, when an ore boat, the S.S. Maryland, ran aground east of Marquette between Lakewood and Gordon, near the current Ojibwa Casino. Built in ...

Marquette’s fresh air school

MARQUETTE — As children are heading back to school in the coming days, let’s take a moment to look back at a rather unique school that once operated in Marquette. The Fresh Air School, named because the windows were left open year round, was part of a nationwide movement attempting to ...

Brewing locally has great history

MARQUETTE — The local brewing scene is currently undergoing a powerful revival. New breweries are producing quality beers for an increasingly discerning consumer base. As we enjoy the renaissance of Marquette County's brewing industry, we should look back at its past, and appreciate that good ...

Marquette’s ‘Line in the Sand’

MARQUETTE — The Berlin Wall, the DMZ between the two Koreas, and other no-man's-lands may stand out in world history, but it’s possible they could pale in comparison to another that tore a city apart, Marquette's Champion Street Bridge. The bridge, the first in the city to span the ...

History at Pine and Ridge

MARQUETTE — The fire at Pine Ridge Apartments this past week was not the first fire at that site, although luckily in both fires no one was injured. The location has a long history, serving as the home for three separate high schools over the span of 100 years, including one that burned ...

Resisting Prohibition in Upper Peninsula

National Prohibition came about through two main acts of government. The first was the 18th Amendment to the Constitution, banning the commercial manufacture, transportation and sale, but not possession, consumption or home manufacture of intoxicating beverages. The amendment was ratified Jan. ...

Will Bradley: Typographer and illustrator

Traveling around the Upper Peninsula will lead you to a wide range of art galleries and local art displays. Many talented people live and work in the U.P. A little research opens the door to the fact that talented artists have lived and worked in the U.P. from its early days. One such artist ...

Bus to the past

MARQUETTE — Do you love local history? Would you like to learn more about our city's past? Will you have summer guests who would enjoy discovering our region's historical roots? The Marquette Regional History Center is hosting its eighth season of Historic Marquette Bus Tours. These ...

Superiorland Yesterdays

EDITOR’S NOTE: Superiorland Yesterdays is prepared by the reference staff at the Peter White Public Library in Marquette. 30 years ago NEGAUNEE – The Negaunee High School Orchestra left Tuesday for a long bus ride to Chicago, followed by a long flight to Frankfurt, West Germany, where the ...