Eagle Harbor Web

An unofficial source of Eagle Harbor, Michigan news, views and information.

"Reader Contributions to the "Harbor Web".


"The Harvey Boarding House" by Sue Adams
(Click picture to enlarge.)

My great-grandparents, Richard and Harriett Harvey opened a boarding house at Eagle Harbor around 1889. It's the same place that was our summer cottage. There was a large part in the back that has since been torn down where the men stayed.

Harriet served her first meal there in 1890. There were 20 that stayed at the house. My great-grandparents had 11 children. The boys including my grandfather George tended the horses, wagons and cutters that belonged to the boarders. The girls worked inside helping with the cooking and cleaning. Harriet ran the boarding house and Richard worked as head logging boss for the construction of the Eagle River tram that brought copper ore to the smelter on an overhead tram. The fifty foot tram was constructed of logs cut nearby and fastened with pegs. That made it possible to avoid the deep winter snow.

All of Richard and Harriet's children attended the Eagle Harbor school which was open when there wasn't any snow. Only the roads over the snow to the stores and mines were packed and rolled for the winter.Frequently they were closed by blizzards.

The boarding house quickly became well known for Harriet's excellent cooking and "beverages" (moonshine) and the fact that she would arrange "ladies" for the boarders. They moved to Calumet around 1900 when business slowed at the harbor.

Grandpa George purchased the house and land from the family. He sold some of the property that was the Harvey potato fields to Dr. Abrams. When the cottage was constructed and the flag was raised for the first time the Harveys and Nicholls stood on our front porch and sang the Star Spangled Banner!

April, 1999 Update."I got an "E" mail from a gal about the same age as me who said that her great-grandparents lived in the Harvey house "before" mine did and one of her relatives may have actually built the house. It was built by Mike Kraus and her GG was Jacob Kraus. Anyhow, she read about the house on your Web! This is so interesting to find out harbor istory. In my mother's era there wasn't a huge interest in that kind of thing but look out for the baby boomers!! :~)"(Sue Adams, 4/3/99)

"Eagle Harbor, circa 1860 - 1900" by Ted Harvey

This story was related to Ted Harvey, by his blind Grandma Harriet Harvey in 1927, when 7 yrs. old at his Granny's knee. 'The bright lights and fun place for the miners employed at 8 mining settlements around, was Eagle Harbor. During those early years, (note : before Lincoln was President) the 'harbor' was the center for supplying the numerous mines around. Resident popluation was about 1000 head year'round, but in summer hundreds came in to work in the stores and general function of 'layin in' supplies for the winter. What was not 'laid in' you could not get, as all were snowed in for months. As the supply hub for Keweenaw County, Eagle Harbor boasted of 5 boat docks and their warehouses,numerous outlets selling all kinds of goods,theaters, saloons, and a library. The medical service consisted of 5 Doctors in summer and 2 resident, and they practiced in their homes and at the homes of the sick. It had three schools during this time, 2 churches, bowling alley,poor house, brewery,factories for soap, butchering, animal feeds etc. In the 1890s , Harvey was listed in census as a Saloon Keeper. Richard and Harriett Harvey operated the Harvey House as a boarding house until about 1900 when they opened a businss in Calumet with factory to make and sell soda pop. The Harvey House was kept as their summer home and stands today, so they say.


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