Aug 14-05

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2005: August: Aug 14-05
Lumber Men of the Mines    ...scroll down to share comments
Photos from Jim Sweet
Employment card    ...scroll down to share comments
Photos from Jim Sweet

Charlie at Pasty Central (Chopper) on Sunday, August 14, 2005 - 08:33 am:

The young guy on the right end of the middle row (holding the pail) is Joseph Svetich, an Austrian immigrant who couldn't yet speak English. He was the grandfather of Jim Sweet, who provided today's Shoebox Memory by way of Copper Country Reflections. This lumber crew is about to descend into the No. 5 shaft at the north end of Mine Street in Calumet, which happens to be right outside my office at Still Waters, corner of Mine and Elm. Of course the shaft is covered these days, surrounded by a wooden fence. To give a perspective of the location, Neil Harri sent along an aerial view he took this week. The large complex surrounded by parking lot is Still Waters, the home of Pasty Central. The arrow shows where the shafthouse used to stand.

Photo by Neil Harri
Joseph was part of the underground lumber gang which worked to shore-up the timbers that kept the shaft stable and safe as possible. Copper Country Reflections host Chuck Voelker points out that the men are wearing oil lamps, which would have placed the photo in about 1905. That means Joseph was probably still a teenager at the time.

Calumet is crowded this weekend, with hundreds of visitors to Boomtown Revival and Heritage Days, and the Tamburitzans at Calumet Theatre last night. Also in the old Armory is a Gun and Sports show put on by the Sportsman's Club. Farther up the Peninsula you'll find the Art Fair and Exhibits in Eagle Harbor. As I sit here in Eagle River typing these words over Pasty.NET's high-speed Internet connection, it amazes me how life has changed over the past century.

If it has been a while since you have visited the Copper Country, we would invite you to spend a few days here before back-to-school time arrives. Conditions are just perfect during the last half of August, and you can explore so much history, natural beauty and culture. Where ever you're from, it's well worth the drive.

Have a good week :0)
69 TOOT (Flyindamooney) on Sunday, August 14, 2005 - 09:07 am:

I learn every time I visit.........thx

By joseph hurley (Jhurl) on Sunday, August 14, 2005 - 09:21 am:

What a great photo and again another review of days past . Im looking foward to another visit next month. I made my first visit to copper harbor by myself a few weeks ago. my best friend and girl friend left me. I found that my heart is still attached to the keweenaw and gods best.
Thanks for the great post .

By Eddyfitz (Eddyfitz) on Sunday, August 14, 2005 - 09:23 am:

Nostalgia, as I look at all of these hardy men about to enter the mine in one of the greatest melting pots in the world. Can people post on here how many different countries were represented in the Copper Country area mining operations. Good to see a nice view of Calumet also showing Torch Lake and "the cuts" where the coal boats entered from Lake Superior for the needs of Calumet & Hecla and also the local heating needs. And I wonder how many of those "lunch buckets" held a nice warm pasty?????

By Ms. Katie (Mskatie) on Sunday, August 14, 2005 - 12:13 pm:

To family background included Canada (French Canadian) and Ireland. I always said the French Canadian were the onery part of my family :>

By JOHN AND ANNE KENTUCKY (Username) on Sunday, August 14, 2005 - 12:14 pm:

Thanks for a great post today. Also very cool to see the pasty central from the air. jhurl,bummer

By Pauline (Yooperinpa) on Sunday, August 14, 2005 - 02:47 pm:

My Mother and I used to work at Still Waters and I had no idea that there was a mine so close. Fasinating to find out what was there before buildings were built. Thanks for the history lesson.

By John C. Heikkila (Heikki) on Sunday, August 14, 2005 - 09:25 pm:

To Eddyfitz:
If the mines in Calumet operated as they did in the early days in my hometown of Iron River, MI, the shift bosses would separate the workers into teams of as many different nationalities as practical. That way, there was much work and little of the 'advantages' of ethnic diversity. ;-)

By mrsrock630 (Mrsrock630) on Monday, August 15, 2005 - 01:02 pm:

By looking at the employment card, it looks like he was at least 18 when he emigrated. It also appears that more information was added as the years went by.

By Gary Hookway (Ghookway) on Tuesday, August 16, 2005 - 05:30 pm:

I don't know if picture and employment card are same age, but according to the card he had a son born 12/21/11 and the picture is in warm(er) weather so I would date his age by the employment card as 25 or 26. Neat photos !!!

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