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Contact: Kathleen Harter, 906-483-3024
The fourth Thursday of the month just won't be the same anymore: after 15 years, Keweenaw National Historical Park is ending the Fourth Thursday in Historys peaker series program.
Keweenaw NHP staff will be shifting focus and implementing a new education program, which includes teacher workshops, after-school programming, class visits, summer activities, and other events to help youth discover, engage with, and explore local history. The park will also host a wider variety of activities that engage visitors, youth, and communities with local history.
The Fourth Thursday series began in the summer of 2001, when there were few opportunities for the public to hear about the exciting work being done in Copper Country history. The NPS and Michigan Tech Archives worked together to sponsor a series to fill that need, arranging different speakers to highlight historical events in historic spaces—and always held on the fourth Thursday of the month. Over the years, organizers hosted nearly 180 programs about a variety of topics, from sandstone quarrying at Jacobsville with Kathryn Eckert, the Jewish experience in the Copper Country with Harley Sachs at Temple Jacob, to the Cliff Mine archeology project at the Eagle River Community Center with Sean Gohman. Historic preservation techniques were also introduced through workshops, including presentations on how to care for historic photographs, conduct oral history interviews, and repair historic masonry. Always free and open to the public, the programs drew anywhere from 2 to 200 participants who braved everything from blizzards to heat waves to attend. Acting park superintendent Kathleen Harter reflected that "the Fourth Thursday programs brought many people together over the years to share their interest in local history and historic preservation. We'd like to thank all the people who gave presentations, all the organizations who hosted events, and everyone who came to a program. We hope that you enjoyed it as much as we did!"
Numerous organizations throughout the Keweenaw are now hosting speaker programs, including several Keweenaw Heritage Sites: the Carnegie Museum of the Keweenaw;Quincy Mine Hoist Association;Keweenaw Heritage Center at St. Anne's;Keweenaw County Historical Society;the Michigan Tech Archives and more all offer opportunities to discover the exciting research people are doing on Copper Country topics. Keweenaw NHP encourages everyone to check these partners and their programs out, and to stay tuned for future NPS programming!