Trapping and Trading: The Fur Trade
Tools of the Blacksmith
COMING IN AUGUST 2016 - The story of Andrews University: From Battle Creek…to Box Cars…to Berrien Springs
Andrews University has been an integral part of our community for more than one hundred years. Generations of local residents and students, as well as students from around the world, all share in its vast history. This exhibit traces the founding of the university from its early days as Battle Creek College in the 1870’s, to the big move to Berrien Springs in 1901, to the impact that Andrews University has on the community today.
The Courthouse Museum: Featured Left, The Fur Trade
Trade in pelts such as beaver, muskrat, mink and otter was Michigan's first industry. Despite popular belief, almost all the trapping was done by Indians, not Europeans. English and French Traders exchanged goods for pelts, but did little trapping themselves. Furs, especially beaver were extremely valuable in Europe for clothing and hats. A trader could easily make his fortune with a few canoe loads of furs. Come see all our museum exhibits.
Tools of the Blacksmith
Recreated on the site is a working forge to illustrate the importance of blacksmiths in small communities.
Thursdays at Courthouse Square
The History Center’s summer program series returns with exciting presenters! The programs are free of charge thanks to generous sponsorships from the Berrien Springs/ Eau Claire Rotary Club and Indiana Michigan Power. All programs are on Thursday Evenings at 6:30 p.m. at the History Center.
Plank’s Tavern - John Owen
John Owen of St. Joseph is the great-grandson of John Plank, builder of The Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island and St. Joseph’s Plank’s Tavern. The latter was said to be even grander than the Grand Hotel. Located near the present-day site of Tiscornia, the enormous three-story Plank’s Tavern opened in 1889. It stretched 420 feet in length, had room for 750 guests, and had just about any amenity a world-class luxury hotel could have. Come listen to John Owen’s lecture about his great-grandfather’s grand hotel.
Locomotives Along the Lakeshore
Presented by History Center curator Bob Myers. Railroads, beginning with the Michigan Central in 1848, spread a transportation network across Berrien County in the 19th century. This program examines the history of the railroad lines that operated in Berrien County, including the Michigan Central, Pere Marquette, St. Joseph Valley, Cincinnati, Wabash & Michigan, and the electric interurban lines. Myers has authored two books on the history of local railroads: “Locomotives Along the Lakeshore” and “Autotram, Clark Equipment Co. Aluminum Railcar” both of which are available at the museum store at the History Center.
Singer/songwriter Laura Whidden, a Berrien Springs native, will share her music and information about her work with the humanitarian aid organization World Vision. Her albums include Love’s Pure Light, Flow, Awaken Me and You Are. Co-sponsored with the Berrien Springs Community Library.
Welcome to the History Center's New Gift Shop
Currently you may place an order by downloading and mailing the attached Order Form , or by phone for credit card orders. We accept Visa and MasterCard.
Looking forward, we invite you to check back soon if your prefer to order directly online as our new online payment system will be finished as soon as possible.
Greetings from Benton Harbor
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