Copper mining in the Keweenaw Peninsula of Michigan has a long history that includes mining by Native Americans long before the Europeans entered the scene. The Keweenaw Peninsula earned the name “The Copper Country” because of the productivity of the mines. The Copper Country is a place of incredible natural beauty and rich industrial heritage. In addition there are the rich human histories of the peoples who came from many lands to work in the mines and other enterprises.
Notes on collecting:
Copper mining certificates from the Copper Country tend to be either common or rare. There is little middle ground. Certificates from Calumet & Hecla and Copper Range are common. Certificates from the Quincy, Adventure, and Ahmeek are also easy to obtain. In some cases there may be only one know certificate. Prices range from about $5 to thousands. The authoritative reference to certificates from the Michigan copper mines are the book Michigan Copper Mining Stock and Bonds by Lee DeGood. This is a high quality 400 page volume that lists all know Copper Country stock certificates. It is worth every penny of its $50 price.
Beginning our Journey …
Central Mine was an early and very successful mine on a fissure vein. The company paid over two million in dividends.
The Keweenaw Copper Company was organized in 1905 to take over a number of the old mines. The company constructed a railroad the Keweenaw Central R.R. from a location near Calumet to Mandan. The company attempted to develop a mine at Mandan. The railroad operated to around WWI. The company continued and was eventually bought out by Calumet and Hecla.
The Ojibway Copper Company was organized in 1907 and attempted to develop a mine to the north of the Seneca. These efforts were not successful but the company continued its existence for a number of years.
The Seneca Mine finally became a significant producer in 1948 as part of Calumet and Hecla. Over the years, a number of companies tried and failed to develop a paying mine.
The Ahmeek Mine was a significant component of Calumet and Hecla (C&H) for many years. The Ahmeek was merged into C&H into C&H in 1923 with a number of other companies including the Allouez, Centennial, and Oseola.
Calumet and Hecla began was a 1871 consolidation of the Calumet, Hecla, Scott and Portland companies as Calumet and Hecla, Mining Company. In 1923 a merger with a number of other companies resulted in the Calumet and Hecla Consolidated Copper Company. In 1952 the company was renamed Calumet and Hecla, Inc.
To be continued….