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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Mahtowa in Carlton County, Minnesota — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
 

The Iron Range

 
 
The Iron Range Marker image. Click for full size.
By K. Linzmeier, June 11, 2011
1. The Iron Range Marker
[east side of marker]
Inscription. One hundred miles north and west of Duluth lies the Iron Range. North America's largest iron ore region consists of three major iron ranges: the Vermillion, the Mesabi, and the Cuyuna. The Vermillion was the first to ship iron ore from Minnesota beginning in 1884 at Tower-Soudan. Extending from Tower to Ely, the Vermillion ore was found in vertical deposits requiring the use of underground mining techniques. The great Mesabi Range, extending for nearly one hundred miles from Grand Rapids to Babbitt, was discovered in 1890. Because the iron was located in shallow basins near the surface, the technique of open pit mining was used to extract the ore. The Cuyuna Range, located between Brainerd and Crosby-Ironton, shipped its first ore in 1911. Both open pit and underground mining occurred on the Cuyuna, which was noted for its high grade manganese ores.

More than 400 mines in Minnesota produced over three billion metric tons of ore that were shipped east on ore boats across the Great Lakes. The ore was used to make the steel that built America's industries, transportation systems and many things used in everyday life.

Many mines are now closed; only those on the Mesabi Range continue to operate, producing taconite, a less rich iron ore requiring processing prior to shipment. The Soudan Mine, where the first ore was
The Iron Range Marker image. Click for full size.
By K. Linzmeier, June 11, 2011
2. The Iron Range Marker
[west side of marker with duplicate text]
mined, was established as a state park after the mine closed in 1962. Since 1963, visitors have descended over twenty-five hundred feet into the ground, as the miners once did, to learn how iron ore was extracted at such depths. The Iron Range offers many places where evidence of its past is plainly visible and well interpreted.
Immigrants from many parts of Europe forged a regional identity as they toiled in the mines and the boarding houses, and frequently battled the mining companies. That fighting spirit remains in the people called "Rangers."

Erected by rhe Minnesota Historical Society
1997
[Seals of the Minnesota Department of Transportation and The Minnesota Historical Society]

 
Erected 1997 by the Minnesota Historical Society.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Minnesota Historical Society marker series.
 
Location. 46° 33.578′ N, 92° 35.81′ W. Marker is near Mahtowa, Minnesota, in Carlton County. Marker can be reached from Interstate 35 at milepost 226, 5.3 miles north of County Road 6, on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is at the northbound Culkin Rest Area. Marker is in this post office area: Barnum MN 55707, United States of America.
 
Also see . . .
The Iron Range Marker image. Click for full size.
By K. Linzmeier, June 11, 2011
3. The Iron Range Marker
 Iron Range. Wikipedia entry. (Submitted on July 2, 2011.) 
 
Categories. Industry & Commerce
 
Nearby Plaque image. Click for full size.
By K. Linzmeier, June 11, 2011
4. Nearby Plaque
This rest area is dedicated to the memory of William E. Culkin. It is built on land gratefully donated to the State of Minnesota by his family. He was a pioneer legislator in Minnesota, a state senator and Register of the Duluth Land Office from 1896 to 1900 at the time when the federal government opened the area to homesteaders. He was a resident of Duluth for more than fifty years and, as a lawyer and editor, he contributed to land development and the promotion of good roads throughout this region.
Culkin Rest Area image. Click for full size.
By K. Linzmeier, June 11, 2011
5. Culkin Rest Area
The Culkin plaque is to the left of the entrance.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on July 2, 2011, by Keith L of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin. This page has been viewed 524 times since then and 50 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on July 2, 2011, by Keith L of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin.
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