Calumet, Michigan is a small town in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan with a long history as a mining town dating back to 1875. Calumet is proud of its history and offers visitors and residents many opportunities to learn about how this town got its start during the copper boom in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. If you are visiting Calumet, Michigan you should check out the following historical buildings and sites so you can learn about this small town and the mining industry in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s.
There are several historical church buildings in Calumet, Michigan. One of these, the First Presbyterian Church located on 5th Street, is now the home of the Calumet Art Center where residents can take a variety of different art and music classes and local artists can showcase their work. This church opened its doors to miners and their families in 1894 and has a long history in the town of Calumet. You can visit this historical church year round.
The Keweenaw Heritage Center at Fifth and Scott operates out of the historical St. Anne’s Catholic Church in Calumet. The church itself opened its doors in 1900 to meet the needs of the Catholic residents in town. In 1966, the church was closed and the building was used for various enterprises until 1994. Here you not only get to see the beautiful historic church building but also learn about the history of Calumet, Michigan from its birth to today. The Keweenaw Heritage Center is open to the public during the months of July and August and is still undergoing renovations to add more exhibits.
There is also the Norwegian Lutheran Church located at 7th and Elm which dates back to 1898. This church was once a showplace with beautiful stained glass windows and is now in the process of being renovated to its original glory. It is said that Edward Ulseth, who is responsible for the construction of this church, modeled it after a church in his hometown in Norway. In the late 1800’s and early 1900’s, this church served a congregation of mostly miners who worked in the area as well as local business owners. The St. Paul the Apostle church in Calumet, Michigan is a gorgeous church with much of the original stained glass, art and the original wood altar. When it opened in 1902, this church served the miners and local business owners in the area. You can visit this church daily from June through October.
The Calumet Theatre is an opera house constructed in 1900 to serve the needs of the growing population in Calumet, Michigan which was close to 4,000 in town and another 30,000 who lived close enough to walk to town. The theater saw many Broadway style shows with well known actors and actresses of the time until the 1920’s when the copper boom started to decline and people started to move away. At this time, The Calumet Theatre served as a movie theater with occasional plays and musicals put on by local groups. The Calumet Theatre was renovated in the late 1900’s and now hosts as many as 60 performances a year. You can tour this historical building year round on your own or take a guided tour from June through September.
If you want to learn more about copper mining and the history of mining in Calumet, Michigan, you should visit the Coppertown USA Mining Museum. Here, you can see actual equipment used in the mines in the area and learn how the copper was actually mined in the area. You can also get a glimpse into what life was like for miners in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s and the dangers that they faced every day. Another interesting museum you should visit in Calumet, Michigan is the Upper Peninsula Firefighters Memorial Museum which is located in the original Red Jacket Fire Station which dates back to the early 1900’s. Here you will learn about the history of firefighting in the Calumet area and see equipment that was actually used. There are a variety of education exhibits as well. This museum is open to the public during June through September.
As you can see, there are many opportunities to explore the history of Calumet, Michigan and its past as a mining town. If you visit Calumet, make sure you stop at these historical buildings and sites so you can learn about the mining industry in the Upper Peninsula and the town of Calumet.