For half a century the southern range was virtually ignored as the copper lodes to the north produced the majority of the Keweenaw’s copper and nurtured the regions richest and most powerful mine companies. But even as the great mines to the north tightened their grip of the peninsula’s finite resources, they were letting pass through their fingers an equally rich range of opportunity to the south – the Baltic Lode.
The Baltic Lode was first discovered in 1882, but it would take more than a decade before the first mine arrived to exploit it. That mine was the Baltic, and it sunk its first shaft along the slopes of Six Mile Hill in 1897. Soon that first shaft would be joined by four others and in the process the small community of Baltic would arise in their shadows. In 1917 the mine was bought up by the Copper Range Company, which would go on to take control of the entire southern range as well. A quarter century and a quarter of a billion pounds of copper later the mine would finally be closed down for good in 1931.
NOTES: Today the remains of the old Baltic Mine lie on private property. However, a few of the original structures can still be viewed from the road, including the massive stone Machine/Blacksmith and Carpenter shops as well as the ruins of the No.3 hoist and boiler complex.
DIRECTIONS: From Houghton follow M26 south for about six miles until arriving at the blinking yellow light in South Range. Turn left onto Trimountain Ave and follow it to a “T” junction. Turn right and follow this road around a curve into the community of Baltic. After two blocks turn right again onto 12th Ave and follow it for about a quarter of a mile. The Baltic Ruins will be on either side of the road just near a gentle curve to the left. The Machine and Carpenter shops will be the large buildings to the left.
FOR MORE INFO: A more detailed look at the remains of the Baltic Mine can be found at Copper Country Explorer.