Lake Linden

The shores of Torch Lake were first settled around 1851 by French-Canadian lumberjacks who had arrived to pillage the great hardwood forests to the north. The wide and deep Traprock river that flowed nearby was well suited for floating logs down the valley, prompting a score of lumber mills to be built near the rivers mouth. The fledging settlements became the center of French Canadian culture in the Keweenaw – complete with French-language newspapers, schools and churches.

In 1867 the region would be changed forever with the arrival of C&H’s massive mill complex built along the north end of the lake. Along with the mills came thousands of immigrants from all across the world, diluting the regions rich French heritage and expanding the community substantially. The increase in population brought with it a wide variety of business as well, including the Bosch Brewery in 1874. But it would always be C&H that had the most influence in the town, bringing with it a form of corporate paternalism that it had perfected up the hill at Calumet. The company donated land for churches, built the village’s high school, and provided steam heat and water to many of its buildings. In return the company received content and grateful workers.

Lake Linden

Showing Its Religious Roots

It’s most recently known as the E-Center, home to the now defunct Little Gem Theater. Before that it was Lake…
Lake Linden

A Corner Lost in Time

William Harris was one of Lake Linden’s most prominent citizens, having not only ran a successful mercantile business in town…
Lake Linden

From the Ashes (p1)

It was just shy of noon on a hot and dry spring day in 1887 when the first alarm sounded.…
Lake Linden

From the Ashes (p2) – The Harris Block

Captain Harris was Cornish, an ancestry that proved incredibly fortunate upon his arrival to the New World and the Lake…
Lake Linden

From the Ashes (p3) – Hennes & Co

Across the road from the Harris Block and the Sutton store sits one of its largest competitors – the L.…
Lake Linden

From the Ashes (p4) – LeBeault Block

As we continue on along the west side of Calumet Street in Lake Linden, we come across a wide gap…
Lake Linden

From the Ashes (p5)

While Lake Linden may have only been a mill town it happened to be the largest mill town on the…
Lake Linden

From the Ashes (p6) – The Bosch Building

Though cursed by the great fire of 1887, Lake Linden was lucky to have more then one enterprising individuals that…
Lake Linden

From the Ashes (p7) – The Lake Linden Hotel

Before moving on to the rest of the masonry commercial blocks to be found along the west side of Calumet…
Lake Linden

From the Ashes (p8) – The Therrian Building

The great fire was a wake up call to Lake Linden, prompting the village to institute new rules and regulations…
Lake Linden

From the Ashes (p9) – Pearce & Company

Last up on our tour of Lake Linden’s fire ravaged downtown is a trio of buildings that occupy a prime…
Lake Linden

A Survivor’s Story

With the arrival of C&H’s mills to the area in the late 1860’s, what was once a predominantly French-Canadian community…
C&H Mills

The Survivors

Once the south side of Lake Linden was home to a sprawling industrial complex of massive buildings, miles of criss-crossing…
Lake Linden

A Tale of Two Churches (p1)

The small lumber village of Torch Lake found itself thrust into the modern age with the arrival of C&H’s stamp…
Lake Linden

A Tale of Two Churches (p2)

In the fall of 1905 the village of Lake Linden was in full bloom, its population swelling and its downtown…
Lake Linden

St. Joseph’s School

It was 1881 when Lake Linden’s first parochial school began holding classes within the private home of Mrs. Pierre Pichette.…
Lake Linden

A Bosch Revival (p1)

While  the development of the old lumber town of Lake Linden may have been driven primarily by the great C&H…
Lake Linden

A Bosch Revival (p2)

The great Lake Linden fire occurred at an almost serendipitous time for beer baron Joseph Bosch. The Torch Lake Brewery…
Lake Linden

Lake Linden’s Village Hall

The great Lake Linden fire that devastated the mill town of Lake Linden also gave it new life, as its…
Lake Linden

Lake Linden’s High School

For a time Lake Linden’s school building was rather unremarkable; a simple wood framed building built in 1881 for a…