Midway Logging Camp III 2021 - Passport in Time

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Current Projects > 2020 > 2021
Michigan - Hiawatha NF
Closed! Archaeology at the Midway Lumber Camp, Part III

Cordwood.jpg by US Forest Service
Hauling Cordwood in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, ca. 1920

July 19-23, 2021

Volunteers must commit to entire session

Join us once again on the beautiful Hiawatha National Forest of Michigan! This will be the third season of a long-term research project exploring the lives of workers in the northern woods, and will focus on a series of cordwood lumber camps owned and operated by the Cleveland Cliffs Iron (CCI) Company. This summer, our work will focus again on the Midway Lumber Camp, which operated from 1913-1920, and contains at least six houses for the mostly Finnish workers who lived there with their families. Project participants will map the site and collect a sample of artifacts from several of the house areas in an attempt to reconstruct the lives and the overall cultural landscape of the workers. Data from this program will augment previous research at the adjacent CCI cordwood camp district encompassing Coalwood, Roscoe and Zerbal, which date from 1901-1912; Midway was established after this district closed, and our aim is to explore how workers’ experiences changed over time.

We will meet in the parking lot of the Munising District Ranger's office on July 19th at 8:00 a.m. local time, after which we will caravan to the excavation site. Please bring a lunch and plenty of water each day! Passport in Time volunteers will gain experience in archaeological field methods and artifact identification, and your time “off the clock” may be spent exploring the many resources the Hiawatha has to offer. Join us in July to learn about the lumber camp workers’ experiences in Michigan’s Northern Forest!

Please note: Strict COVID-19 protocols will be followed, including the wearing of masks, social distancing, etc. Additionally, given current national and global circumstances, some aspects of the project may be subject to change. The project leader will notify all selectees should this occur.

Number of openings: 10

Special skills: Volunteers must be physically capable of hiking moderate distances each day and in a variety of weather conditions; previous archaeological survey and/or excavation, mapping, sketching, photography, historic artifact identification experience, and/or knowledge of area history helpful, but not required

Minimum age: 18 years old

Facilities: Munising is a full-service community with hotels/motels, restaurants, and full range of other amenities; a variety of Federal and private campgrounds are also available in the Munising area; amenities vary, and fees will apply – camp sites in National Forest and National Parks campgrounds will need to be reserved through the federal reservation system: recreation.gov; camping amenities local to the project area can also be found at https://munisingtouristpark.com/; https://www.picturedrocksrvpark.com/; https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/hiawatha/recarea/?recid=13284; and https://otterlakemichigan.com/; meals, lodging, travel, and transportation to and from the designated meeting area(s) at volunteer expense; volunteers responsible for own camping equipment, hook-up fees, etc. There are no toilet facilities on site, but plenty of woods to hide in!
Nearest towns: Project based out of Munising Ranger District; Munising, 15 miles; Marquette, 45 miles; Rapid River, 45 miles

Applications due: Ongoing until filled

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