Monthly Archives: October 2009

More Copper City Views

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It may have been Mr. Finnegan that gave birth to the community of Copper City, but it was Edward Ulseth that built the town from the ground up – literally. Ulseth was the region’s premier contractor, having been responsible for the erection of over 500 buildings and houses scattered about …

Bennetts Department Store

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The extreme weather, rough terrain, and long distances that were staples of life in the Copper Country created a need for communities that could serve all its residents needs directly from main street. This axiom was even more applicable to Copper City, due to its isolated location far to the …

A City Built for Copper

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While the great Calumet Conglomerate lode might have been getting the lion’s share of attention near the turn of the century in the Copper Country, a strong rival to the north was slowly coming into its own. The Kearsarge Amygdaloid was first pillaged by its namesake – the Kearsarge Mine …

Mine Machines: Air Compressors

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Before the application of electric generation to the Copper Country landscape, all of a mine’s mechanical power was only obtainable from steam. While this form of power was convenient for a mine’s surface plant where large boiler houses and smokestacks could be constructed, its application to the underground was a …

Another Isle Royale Dry

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The new Isle Royale Copper Company began its reinvigorated life in 1899, quickly investing large sums of money into the re-opening of the Isle Royale lode atop the bluff overlooking Houghton. Production resumed in 1901, but the lode would reveal itself to be a low-grade and sporadic producer. It wasn’t …

The No.4 Rockhouse

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After finally making our way from the Isle Royale No.4’s engine complex, we followed a trail through the surrounding woods out into a clearing. As we expected sitting right smack dab in the middle of that clearing was the next subject on our tour – the No.4 rockhouse remains. Also …

The Complex (p4)

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One of the challenges faced by explorers such as myself while attempting to interpret the ruins we find is a determination of purpose – why a ruin exists and what purpose it once served. Often this is a problem of context, since ruins by their very nature are isolated in …

The Complex (p3)

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After exploring two large machine foundations within the sprawling Isle Royale No. 4 complex, we found ourselves face to face with yet another – this one sitting within its own room on the complex’s south side. This foundation was oddly familiar to us, and looked very similar to the one …

The Complex (p2)

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From atop the old hoist foundation at the Isle Royale No. 4 we found ourselves peering out over a sprawling concrete landscape stretching off towards the tree line. Littered along it were a collection of massive foundations, machine mounts, and walls. In addition to the hoist itself the large complex …

The Complex (p1)

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The boiler house that we had discovered previously at Isle Royale No. 4 provided the mine with the fuel necessary to run its collection of steam powered equipment. In Copper Country mines this equipment consisted primarily of two machines. The first was the hoist engine, used to haul materials from …