CALUMET TOWNSHIP - There are many structures, items and places which might be worthy national historical recognition in the Copper Country, and finding them is the purpose of an ongoing survey.
Scott See, executive director of the Keweenaw National Historical Park Advisory Commission, said Phase 2 of the commission's historical resource survey has begun.
"The objective of the survey is to identify historical properties that are potentially eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places," he said.
According to the NRHP website, "The National Register of Historic Places is the official list of the Nation's historic places worthy of preservation. Authorized by the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, the National Park Service's National Register of Historic Places is part of a national program to coordinate and support public and private efforts to identify, evaluate and protect America's historic and archeological resources."
Last year, See said the survey team worked in Ontonagon County, which was broken into 19 districts. One district in Bergland had 551 buildings, but most of them didn't fit the criteria for register.
"They really found one structure," he said.
See said the survey team examines structures built before 1970, because to be considered for the register, a structure must be at least 50 years old. Structures 40 to 49 years old in the survey, which may be of interest, can be kept in mind for later consideration.
"We've got time to work on registry nominations," he said.
This summer, See said independent contractor Jane Busch and a team of about 10 assistants will survey northern Baraga County, southern Houghton County and all of Keweenaw County, much of it in vehicles.
"A lot of it is what would be called a windshield survey," he said.
In the summer of 2012, See said northern Houghton County will be surveyed.
After the survey is complete, See said a preservation plan will be suggested and a final report will be given to the Advisory Commission in early 2013.
Although the NPS doesn't require a historical survey, See said having one will help Advisory Commission members know what the Copper Country has as far as historical structures are concerned.
"There's no inventory out there," he said.
See said last year's survey, which cost $46,000, was funded by a combination of the Advisory Commission, KNHP, the NPS Midwest Regional Office, the Americana Foundation and private donations. This year, the survey will be funded by the same sources for $73,000 and $20,000 in in-kind labor.