Cliffs Shaft Mine Museum

The Cliffs Shaft Mine Museum is a former iron mine, now a heritage museum in Ishpeming, Marquette County, Michigan. It celebrates the history of the Marquette Iron Range. The museum is operated by "Marquette Range Iron Mining Heritage Theme Park Inc.", a nonprofit group. The mine was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1992. Several iron ore mines operated in Marquette County. One of the last underground mine to operate was the Cliffs Shaft Mine, which operated for a total of 99 years and was closed down on December 22, 1967 by its owner, the Cleveland Cliffs company. Cleveland Cliffs shut down its last underground mine, the Mather mine, in 1979. In 1998, the former owners of the mine donated the majority of the property of the Cliffs Shaft mine to the nonprofit group so that a museum could be created there. The Cliffs Shaft mine complex was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1992. It is commemorated by a Michigan Historical Marker Visitors can see mining artifacts, photographs and equipment, as well as a chemical lab, blasting items, and the engine house with its air compressor room. Tours are available. The museum also displays the mineral collections of the Ishpeming Rock and Mineral Club.