Not a weather question, but...........

General Discussions: ASK John: Not a weather question, but...........

By camper_trash on Tuesday, February 17, 2009 - 12:08 pm: Edit Post

I was hoping you could shed some light on why it's called "The Keweenaw Peninsula, " when clearly, it is an island. Not even any old-timers seem to know.

By admin on Tuesday, February 17, 2009 - 12:27 pm: Edit Post

Cripes, you're just not asking the right old timers!

Keweenaw means "place of crossing" in the native american dialect. Sort of like "portage" in our language.

Before the european-american settlers arrived, the area between Houghton and Hancock was a mix of swamp and some solid ground and was an area that could be crossed via portage with a canoe.

Not long after the copper boom up here started, that swampy area was dredged and made navigable for the ships to come through and service all the mills that were popping up on the Torch and Portage Lakes.

Hence, Keweenaw Peninsula!


By frnash on Tuesday, February 17, 2009 - 06:35 pm: Edit Post

"Cripes, you're just not asking the right old timers!"

John's got that right! :-)

Here are a few other good references:
1. The Keweenaw Peninsula. Note, the first picture clearly shows that the Peninsula extends well south of the Portage Canal a.k.a. …
2. The Keweenaw Waterway. The second picture clearly shows the man made canal at the north end of the waterway, where the major dredging was done.


… the waterway was dredged and extended in the 1860s in a joint venture between the United States Government and several mining corporations.

By camper_trash on Wednesday, February 18, 2009 - 09:36 pm: Edit Post

Thanks for the info!

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