Champion Mill

The Champion Mill was the last. The Atlantic Mill was the first, built along the red cliffs at Redrige in 1895. Soon others followed. As the mines along the south range (south of Houghton) opened in increasing numbers, the need for processing facilities became urgent. And while the mines to the north concentrated their mill operations along the shores of Torch Lake, these southern mines did not have the luxury of such a large and deep body of water nearby. They would have to settle for a more distant shore to build their mills – the Lake Superior Shore. Thanks to the Atlantic Mill already operating at Redridge, transportation routes had already been established from the south range to the shore and the small town of Redridge was alive and bustling. This opened up large runs of shore nearby, and other companies sooned followed to stake their claim. By 1901 the Atlantic was joined by the Baltic, and within the year three more were built. In total 5 mills lined the shore here including the Atlantic, Baltic, Adventure, Trimountain, and at the end of the line, the Champion. By the 60’s all would be gone – except the Champion.

Champion Mill

Sandstone and Concrete

We have often discussed the two faces of the Keweenaw. The difference between the west and east shores of the…
Champion Mill

Return to the Sea

The Champion Mill was the last. The Atlantic Mill was the first, built along the red cliffs at Redrige in…
Champion Mill

The Big Picture

After making our way off the beach an atop the short ridge backing it, we had found ourselves at the…
Champion Mill

Buddles?

The Champion Mill, like any mill on the Keweenaw, works to separate copper from the rock that entombs it. First,…
Champion Mill

Feeding the Thirst

Stamp mills required large amounts of water to operate, in the order of tens of millions of gallons a day.…
Champion Mill

Pillars

Exiting the pump house, we found ourselves facing a long line of concrete pillars stretching out ahead of us. There…
Champion Mill

Concrete Walls and Trestles

the most prominent feature at the champion mill, the long concrete wall along the back wall of the mill as…
Champion Mill

Smokestacks and Stamp Sands

As we leave the Champion Mill, we take one last look at the monument that sits along with it –…
Champion Mill

Return to Champion Mill

I thought it fitting considering our return to the Champion Mine to take a another look at the Champion Mill…
Champion Mill

Anatomy of a Mill (Rock Bins)

The first stop for any rock entering a Copper Country stamp mill is one of several large storage bins that…