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”

Negaunee in Marquette County, Michigan — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

Marquette Iron Range

 
 
Marquette Iron Range Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, August 1, 2017
1. Marquette Iron Range Marker
Inscription.  The first of the immensely rich Lake Superior iron ore deposits to be discovered and mined were those of the Marquette Iron Range. In 1844 William A. Burt and his surveying party discovered outcroppings of iron ore south of Teal Lake. This area soon became the first and has remained the chief center of the range’s mining. In 1847 real production was underway at the Jackson Mine. Operations at the early mines were confined to ores at or close to the surface. Underground mining began after the Civil War when shafts were sunk. A forge built on the Carp River produced iron blooms in 1848. The pioneer furnace at Negaunee, built in 1857-58, was the first actual blast furnace. Most ore has been shipped out to be smelted. When the Iron Mountain Railroad was built in 1857 ore could be moved easily to Marquette. Here at the pocket docks, the first of which was built in 1857, the ore was loaded aboard ships and carried through the Soo Canal to the growing industrial centers in the East. Copper, gold, silver, and lead have been mined here but in small amounts only, leaving iron supreme.
 
Erected 1957 by Michigan
Marquette Iron Range Marker map image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, August 1, 2017
2. Marquette Iron Range Marker map
(top half of marker)
Historical Commission. (Marker Number S35.)
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Industry & CommerceRailroads & StreetcarsWaterways & Vessels. In addition, it is included in the Michigan Historical Commission series list.
 
Location. 46° 30.732′ N, 87° 36.158′ W. Marker is in Negaunee, Michigan, in Marquette County. Marker is at the intersection of U.S. 41 and Maple Street, on the right when traveling east on U.S. 41. Marker is located at the south end of Miners Park. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Negaunee MI 49866, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 1 other marker is within walking distance of this marker. Jackson Mine (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line).
 
Also see . . .
1. History of the Iron Ore Trade. Iron ore was discovered on the Marquette Range on September 19, 1844 by William A. Burt, United States Deputy Surveyor, and party who were surveying in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Burt was the inventor of the solar compass and it was the remarkable variations in the direction of the needle that caused him to ask his party to seek about for that which disturbed it. Outcroppings of ore were found in great abundance; in fact, a mere rip of sod revealed the ore. (Submitted on July 31, 2020, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
Marquette Iron Range Marker inscription image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, August 1, 2017
3. Marquette Iron Range Marker inscription
(bottom half of marker)
 

2. Charles Thompson Harvey. After his successful enterprise as Soo Canal engineer, Charles Harvey moved west to Marquette, arriving in 1857. He organized the Pioneer Iron Company and engineered the building of the first charcoal blast furnace in the Upper Peninsula near the Jackson Mine, Negaunee. (Submitted on July 31, 2020, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 

3. Iron Mountain Railroad. Feb. 22, 1855: First common carrier railroad in the Upper Peninsula, the Iron Mountain Railroad, was chartered; its Negaunee-Marquette line was completed by August 1857. (An earlier road, the “Iron Mountain Railway,” was a privately owned horse-powered tramway.) (Submitted on July 31, 2020, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 

4. Ore dock (Wikipedia). As the mines continued to develop and railways were put in place, the volume of ore increased, far outstripping the local production capacity. In 1855, the Soo Locks opened, and the volume of ore shipped increased, with a total of 1447 tons shipped on various brigs and schooners. The first dock specifically for the ore trade was built in 1857 in Marquette. It was flat rather than elevated, and the vessels were loaded by men using wheelbarrows. Activity also continued in Marquette's Lower Harbor. (Submitted on July 31, 2020, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
Marquette Iron Range Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, August 1, 2017
4. Marquette Iron Range Marker
(U.S. Highway 41 on right • Maple Street on left)
 
 
Lower Harbor Ore Dock, Marquette, Michigan image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, August 1, 2017
5. Lower Harbor Ore Dock, Marquette, Michigan
(from Wikipedia) The Duluth, South Short and Atlantic Railway, in order to remain competitive, completed construction of a new dock in 1932. This dock was constructed of steel and concrete, 85.5 feet high, 969 feet long, with 150 pockets.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on July 31, 2020. It was originally submitted on July 30, 2020, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 53 times since then and 5 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on July 31, 2020, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.
Paid Advertisement
Mar. 6, 2021