Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Gay in Keweenaw County, Michigan — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

Historic Town of Gay

 
 
Historic Town of Gay Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, August 2, 2017
1. Historic Town of Gay Marker
Inscription.  Gay was established in 1901, when the Mohawk and Wolverine mining companies each built a stamp mill here to process copper ore from their mines. The area, once known for quarrying, lumbering, and fishing, developed into a booming mill town named for Joseph E. Gay, a mine official. By 1902, the mining companies had platted streets, strung telephone lines, and built over 100 houses and a school. They laid railroad tracks, built a dock, provided a fire pump, and constructed numerous mill buildings. In 1909, the town boasted having several stores, and a post office, recreation hall, playground, park, and doctor's office. Parishioners formed and constructed a Catholic church in 1914. By 1922, the 1,500 residents enjoyed modern comforts of water, sewer, and electrical service. Social life included bands, school clubs, baseball teams, and fraternal organizations. In 1927, the town raised a 10-grade schoolhouse for 250 students. Then, in 1932, falling copper prices caused both mills to shut down. Although lumbering resumed, Gay's prosperity quickly declined. Dwindling population led to the school closing in 1961, train service ending in 1964, and the
Historic Town of Gay Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, August 2, 2017
2. Historic Town of Gay Marker
(Historic Gay Schoolhouse Museum in background)
post office leaving in 1988. Today, remaining houses, township buildings, schoolhouse, and 236-foot smokestack are visible symbols of Gay's important past.
 
Erected by Sherman Township.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: EducationIndustry & CommerceRailroads & StreetcarsSettlements & Settlers.
 
Location. 47° 13.629′ N, 88° 9.799′ W. Marker is in Gay, Michigan, in Keweenaw County. Marker is on 2nd Street (Gay Lac La Belle Road) east of Lake Street, on the left when traveling east. Marker is located near the pull-out and parking area on the south side of the Gay Schoolhouse Historical Museum. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Lake Linden MI 49945, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 15 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Gay Schoolhouse Historical Museum (a few steps from this marker); New Snowfall Record 390.4 Inches (approx. 11.2 miles away); The Delaware Mine (approx. 14 miles away); Eagle River (approx. 14.2 miles away); Douglass Houghton (approx. 14.2 miles away); Joseph Blight, Sr. (approx. 14.2 miles away); a different marker also named Douglass Houghton (approx. 14.3 miles away); Lake Shore Drive Bridge / Eagle River (approx. 14.3 miles away).
 
Related markers.
Mohawk Stamp Mill Smokestack image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, August 2, 2017
3. Mohawk Stamp Mill Smokestack
(located 100 yards east of marker)
Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. The Historic School at Gay, Michigan
 
Also see . . .
1. Gay, Michigan (Wikipedia). The Mohawk Mining Company built a stamp mill in Gay in 1898. The residual stamp sand dumped into Lake Superior increased the town's area greatly. Today, only the large smokestack and the ruins from the stamp mill remain. The town was named after Joseph E. Gay, one of the founders of the Mohawk and Wolverine Mining Companies. (Submitted on July 20, 2020, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 

2. Mohawk Mining Company (Wikipedia). Between 1906 and 1932, the Mohawk Mining Company paid out more than $15 million in shareholder dividends. The Mohawk stamp mill began construction in 1901 and started operation in December 1902. The mill's equipment included three sets of stamps and three sets of auxiliary crushing rolls. The stamps each had a capacity of 500 tons daily. (Submitted on July 20, 2020, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
 
Mohawk Stamp Mill Smokestack image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, August 2, 2017
4. Mohawk Stamp Mill Smokestack
(located 100 yards east of marker)
Gay Bar image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, August 2, 2017
5. Gay Bar
(located across intersection, southwest of marker)
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on July 20, 2020. It was originally submitted on July 20, 2020, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 43 times since then and 5 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on July 20, 2020, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.
Paid Advertisement
Feb. 25, 2021