August 2017-2nd & 3rd Quarter Newsletter,
PO Box 148, 403 So Sophie Street, Bessemer, MI 49911
The Heritage Center re-opened Memorial Day weekend this year and has been busy ever since. We are collecting items for display, and had a successful Miners’ Recognition Day celebrated on the Saturday before the 4th of July. Organized by Sue Abelman and sponsored by the Bessemer Women’s Club and the Historical Society it is was quite a busy day; starting at the Pit Stop by the Statue of the Miner with remarks by various officials, laying of a wreath at the statue and taps played to honor all miners of the area; those past and to those still living. A presentation by the Womens Club followed at the City Hall with modeling of period fashions from the mining era and stories told, culminating with Logging and Mining Video presentations at the Heritage Center hosted by the Society. Refreshments followed and many visitors attended all events. A special thank you to Sue Abelman for all her work of promotion and planning. The week of the 4th was very successful as usual here at the center with people visiting from all over the country.
We had one very sad event this spring with the passing of our beloved friend and President Ed Sandene on May 3rd 2017 after a short illness. He was our heart and soul and will be missed tremendously by all. Ed’s contributions alone to the Bessemer Historical Society are too many to tell. He was a charter member that helped form the Society and the Heritage Center. He lived a full life and shared so many of his stories with hundreds of people here, on local radio and in the newspaper for years. We learned a lot from Ed and about his life on the farm, his Finnish ancestry, his work as a logger in the early years as well as his years working in the ore mines and so much more. He truly was a treasure and will be remembered forever.
With the loss of Ed, we now have need for a few people to step up to the plate and help us on the Board and or to volunteer. Also due to a minor health issue, Myron Re stepped down from our board. He’s doing just fine these days but let’s just say it was a wake-up call for him to cut back on a few things. We are sorry to see him leave and we wish him well. Thank you very much Myron for your service to the Society. You’re always welcome here.
Anyone interested in volunteering or even slightly curious about the Historical Society and becoming a board member please contact any one of us. We meet for a business meeting only once a month except in December.
Currently we are open Friday and Saturday afternoons in the summer and need volunteers for those days and the additional days during the 4th of July and Pumpkin Fest at the end of September. We open Memorial Day weekend and close after Labor Day weekend. We don’t expect anyone to have all the answers or to know all our history. We have the history of Bessemer on the shelves and in the displays here at the Center in books, papers, photos, displays and much more. We just want to keep the doors open and keep the past alive. With three of us rotating every weekend gets difficult. With additional volunteers our time would be divided more favorably and we could all enjoy our beautiful summers.
Around town: There is a bit of news for the future as the Downtown Development Authority has instituted a plan to offer locations and incentives for pop-up businesses who need a little help in starting a business. Thus far there are a few new places in town. A dog groomer on Mary St. next to what was the old grocery story off main street, an artist has cleaned up painted and set up her studio and consignment store in the old drug store where she also has yoga classes. There is an new office for a counseling service. Others are in the process. Everything old is and can be new again. But we lost one building: The old Dandee Bakery was torn down. That could turn out to be a nice little pocket park or ??
Stories from the old Bessemer Herald in 1897
“Bessemer barbers found hair cutting so scarce lately that to keep their cutting machines in order-they have to cut prices - hair cuts for .25 cents. No more foot ball shocks if you please. Get your hair cut”
“About 50 more men found work at the East Norrie mine this week. The mines in Ironwood are now employing 1,000 men.”
“A good mining coat cost 1.00 at Kahn & Skuds.”
“The Tilden Company is shipping ore with another steam shovel this week and is hustling the ore out at a rate of about 300 cars per day. A steam shovel is working on either side of the stock pile at No. 9 shaft and the same is rapidly becoming smaller.”
Under Common Council proceedings in August 1897 “An ordinance entitled “An ordinance relative to the playing of the game base ball in the city of Bessemer on Sunday” be adopted and was carried by a vote of 6 to 1 “
An ordinance entitled, “An ordinance relative to circuses, side shows, menageries and the exhibition of natural or artificial curiosities in the city of Bessemer and providing for the same “ be adopted ; carried, all the aldermen present voting yea.”
That’s it for now, until the next time.
We hope you all have a great fall! Enjoy the colors from where ever you are!
For more information or to volunteer please contact any one of us.
Dan Cvengros email@example.com <mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>
Richard Steiger email@example.com <mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>
Connie Pricco email@example.com <mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>
Mission statement: The purpose of this organization is to promote and preserve the history of the Bessemer area. Historical materials shall include any items pertaining to the history and the heritage of this area, and said items will be shared and displayed in a museum setting.
Meetings are held at 2PM on the 3rd Thursday of each month at the Heritage Center except December. The Annual Meeting open to all members, is held in September. This year its September 21st at the Heritage Center at 2pm. You are all invited to attend.