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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Eagle River in Keweenaw County, Michigan — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

Lake Shore Drive Bridge / Eagle River

 
 
Marker, Lake Shore Drive Bridge Face image. Click for full size.
By Christopher Light, circa July 2005
1. Marker, Lake Shore Drive Bridge Face
Inscription. Lake Shore Drive Bridge. This bridge, completed in 1915, was one of two bridges erected simultaneously by the Michigan State Highway Department across the Eagle River. The second was located in nearby Phoenix. Prior to 1915 a Pratt through truss bridge crossed the 53-foot gorge here. It deteriorated and was replaced with this structure. The highway department designed the bridge, which was constructed by the Wisconsin Bridge & Iron Company of Milwaukee. The Smith-Byers-Sparks Company of Houghton provided the concrete abutments for this steel riveted Warren deck truss bridge, which is 139 feet long. The main span measures 105 feet long and 17 feet wide. In 1990 this bridge was converted to pedestrian use when the adjacent timber bridge opened.

Eagle River. In 1843 the Lake Superior Copper Company purchased several land leases for mining. Two years later the Cliff Mine, alleged to be “the first great copper mine in the Western Hemisphere,” was opened by the Pittsburgh & Boston Company. The mines attracted large numbers of Germans, Cornishmen and Irishmen and gave rise to other industries. On August 29, 1846, the Lake Superior News and Miners’ Journal boasted that Eagle River had “the appearance of a thriving village.” In 1850, Prussian immigrant Frank Knivel opened the Knivel Brewery, and
Eagle River Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mike Wintermantel, August 13, 2014
2. Eagle River Marker
in 1862 the Eagle River Fuse Company was established southeast of here on the river. The company manufactured twenty-five thousand feet of fuse per day for use in the mines. In 1861, Keweenaw County was set off from Houghton County and Eagle River became the county seat.
 
Erected 1991.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Michigan Historical Commission marker series.
 
Location. 47° 24.759′ N, 88° 17.798′ W. Marker is in Eagle River, Michigan, in Keweenaw County. Marker is at the intersection of State Highway 26 and 4th Street on State Highway 26. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Mohawk MI 49950, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 5 other markers are within 14 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Eagle Harbor House (approx. 7 miles away); Eagle Harbor (approx. 7.1 miles away); Calumet Theater (approx. 13.6 miles away); The Italian Hall / Italian Hall Tragedy (approx. 13.6 miles away); St. Paul the Apostle Church (approx. 13.7 miles away).
 
Also see . . .  Eagle River. (Submitted on May 4, 2007.)
 
Additional comments.
1. Lake Shore Drive Bridge/Eagle River
The marker indicates that this
Looking across the bridge towards the marker image. Click for full size.
By Christopher Light, circa July 2005
3. Looking across the bridge towards the marker
bridge, the "Lake Shore Drive Bridge", built 1915, was constructed simultaneously with the 'other' old bridge in Eagle River, what is known as the "Main Street Bridge" and which has been closed since circa 1999.

My impression is that it is unlikely that these two bridges were, in fact, built "simultaneously".

There is a picture [Image MS042--26-999-B-5B] in the Reeder Collection of the MTU Copper Country Archives which clearly shows the "Main Street" bridge constructed and open for traffic on August 08, 1909. 1909 seems, also, to be the date of construction of this "other" bridge according to an analysis and records compiled Spring, 2002, by MTU Professor Bogue Sandberg's Civil Engineering Senior Design Group studying possible preservation of the "Main Street" bridge.

Paul LaVanway
Wausau, Wisconsin & Copper Harbor, Michigan

    — Submitted July 18, 2007, by Paul LaVanway of Wausau, Wisconsin.

 
Categories. Bridges & ViaductsNatural Features
 
Bridge Over the Eagle River image. Click for full size.
By Christopher Light
4. Bridge Over the Eagle River
Eagle River Falls image. Click for full size.
By Christopher Light, circa aug 2006
5. Eagle River Falls
In late summer the river's volume decreases to a trickle. The falls is viewed from the historic bridge.
Eagle River (downstream) image. Click for full size.
By Christopher Light, Aug 2006
6. Eagle River (downstream)
Eagle River flows through a narrow canyon to Lake Superior. It passes through the town of Eagle River.
Oldest Bridge in Eagle River image. Click for full size.
By Christopher Light, circa Aug 2006
7. Oldest Bridge in Eagle River
Town consists of a few homes and one block of stores. Here is the original bridge across Eagle River. It has been closed for years.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on May 4, 2007, by Christopher Light of Valparaiso, Indiana. This page has been viewed 2,984 times since then and 23 times this year. Photos:   1. submitted on May 4, 2007, by Christopher Light of Valparaiso, Indiana.   2. submitted on August 17, 2014, by Mike Wintermantel of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.   3, 4. submitted on May 4, 2007, by Christopher Light of Valparaiso, Indiana.   5, 6, 7. submitted on May 24, 2007, by Christopher Light of Valparaiso, Indiana. • J. J. Prats was the editor who published this page.
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