Michigan Iron Industry Museum, Negaunee

#13 of 51 in Museums in Upper Peninsula
Must see · Specialty Museum · Museum
The Michigan Iron Industry Museum, a branch facility of the Michigan Historical Center, is a community museum serving the heritage of the Marquette Iron Range on Michigan's Upper Peninsula. The museum is located in Negaunee, a town built atop the geological strata of the iron range near Marquette. Until recently, Negaunee was a one-industry town that centered on the mining of iron ore. The Negaunee region served as the center of U.S. iron ore production from about 1880 until approximately 1900, when this role was taken over by iron mines on Minnesota's Mesabi Iron Range. The Michigan Iron Industry Museum opened in 1987 close to the Carp River Forge site on the Carp River where Michigan iron ore was first forged in 1848.
Admission to the museum is free, and the museum is open year-round. The museum also serves as the focal point for the Iron Ore Heritage Trail, a 47-mile (76 km) bicycle and hiking trail that presents a look at some of the key sites of human and geological heritage on the Marquette Iron Range.
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Michigan Iron Industry Museum reviews

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54 reviews
  • Located in the forest on the site of the original mines, this super cool museum is an absolute gem. This is a gorgeous facility. So much information about the people and the hard work that went...  more »
  • Highly recommend if you are in to mining. Offers a lot of history on Michingan's many mining operations in the area.  more »
  • This museum is a bit hidden, but it's a great stop. There's a sign on the main highway and a short jaunt down a paved drive will get you here. It's free admission with a recommended $5 donation in a box by the door. This is a well kept museum with a nice selection of the tools used in the mining of the area. Aimed more toward the school crowd, there are a good number of educational placards around discussing the history and use of the trade in a simple terms. There are a few stations to experiment (compasses and magnets and such). There are quite a few spots talking about the lives of the people that worked the mines, not just the mines themselves, and I thought that was a nice touch. There's a nice gift shop and some nature walking paths around the building itself. If you're on a family trip (or just have an interest in the local history) it's a fun, short stop. Well worth the suggested donation if you make it!
  • Surprisingly interesting! I had no idea iron was so entertaining and important to the area and our country. The exhibit featured interesting displays for both adults and children and admission was a donation. Our 1 hour visit was enough to cover many of the indoor exhibits but not much time on the trail outside.
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