When mining interests first descended on the Allouez gap, they found a wet and marshy stretch of land, flooded through the diligent work of resident beavers. Unfortunately for the beaver, the highly rich Kearsarge Amygdaloid Lode was found to run right through the middle of this massive marsh. As man moved in the dams were destroyed, the marshes drained and filled, and the once prevalent beaver driven away. Their legacy was honored, however, with the formation of the Ahmeek Mining Company whose name was derived from the Ojibway word for beaver – amik.
It was the same name that was also given to the nearby village of Ahmeek. Like at most mines, a collection of worker housing developed nearby which became known as Ahmeek location. But unlike most mines a second town-site with the same name was growing nearby. A pair of Calumet real estate dealers had seen the quick development of the Ahmeek Mine and knew that in such a swampy area real-estate would be in high demand. The men bought up land across the way from the already established Ahmeek location and platted out a second Ahmeek, selling land high in demand. Soon this area bloomed, and in 1909 became incorporated as a village. While most mines supported a single town, the Ahmeek Mine was now supporting two.
Ahmeek Village managed to grow a thriving commerce center along Hubbell Street. A series of storefronts and handsome stone buildings lines one side of the street, while on the other side a park was allowed to form. Take a panoramic view of this main street here.
An old door that once lead up to an upstairs apartment in one of the many old storefronts along main street. This building most likely served as a tavern, since there were a good amount in the village.
An old advertisement for Dad’s Root Beet in the form of a thermometer sits on the front of a main street building. Once serving as a convenience stop to travelers passing through, now this building sits boarded and abandoned.
The remains of another advertisement sit faded along the top of this old stone block building. This one advertises for Royal Crown Cola, known as RC cola today.
One of the more ornate buildings in Ahmeek, this stone building is built from decorative textured blocks. A style seen elsewhere along the Keweenaw (an old building in Phillipsville comes to mind) it looks as new as the day it was built.
While these buildings have stood for a century, they have suffered the continual push for modernization, which adds design and style elements from different periods of time. The result is a mishmash of looks and styles on one building, as is seen here.
A nice detail on one of the wooden buildings along main street – still in remarkably good shape.
An interesting sunrise motif on the top of the Hart’s Quick Stop. I’m not sure if its original to the building – as the rest of the building has been nicely renovated – but an interesting detail either way.