Current Exhibitions

Myth, Mysteries, Unexplained and Unproven

The Beaumier U.P. Heritage Center announces the postponement of the opening for its new exhibition, “Myth, Mysteries, Unexplained and Unproven.”  Due to unforeseen circumstances, the exhibit will not open until Saturday, June 20, in the Center’s gallery in 105 Cohodas Hall, 1401 Presque Isle Ave in Marquette. We apologize in advance for any inconvenience this might cause our visitors. The exhibition will be on display through September 26 and is free and open to the public. The Beaumier Center is open from 10a.m. to 4p.m., Monday through Saturday. 

The Upper Peninsula is a wonderful and even weird place.  Over the centuries, it has inspired all sorts of wonder but is also full of much myth and mystery.  The Beaumier U.P. Heritage Center will be featuring some of these stories in its upcoming exhibit, “Myth, Mysteries, Unexplained and Unproven.”  When we use the word “myth” many people assume that such stories are untrue.  Where this often is the case, myth has value beyond just being a story to tell around a campfire.  Myths carry the cultural values and truths of a society or culture as well.  This exhibition will discuss myth from this perspective, not trying to disprove stories and phenomena but rather to try and place their meaning in the Upper Peninsula.  There will several different topics featured in the exhibit, including stories about the Paulding Light, Sasquatches, Loup-Garous (werewolves), ghost ships, UFOs, Ancient Mariners and many more.  The exhibit will also discuss the very nature of how historians and archeologists determine what is fact, fiction, hoax or prank.  In an age where the television history specials pass off unproven histories and myths as fact, the exhibit will delve into why we believe what we cannot prove and how we can better interpret these stories.

Much of this exhibition was researched and written by students in the Department of Sociology’s course, AN 495 - Myth, Mystery, and Fraud in Archaeology, led by Dr. Scott Demel.  The students conducted research on some of the topics and then wrote the exhibition text for each area.  They also identified photographic resources to compliment the exhibition.  The exhibition is being designed by the Beaumier Center’s student graphic designer, Riley Crawford, is curated by Daniel Truckey. 

For more information on the exhibition, please call 906-227-3212 or e-mail heritage@nmu.edu.  The Beaumier U.P. Heritage Center is open Monday through Saturday from 10a.m. to 4p.m.  The Center is free and open to the public. 

Selling Nahma

April 4 through May 30, 2015

On April 4, the Beaumier U.P. Heritage Center will be opening the traveling exhibition, “Selling Nahma,” which is on loan from the Nahma Historical Society.  This exhibition, a collaboration between the Nahma Historical Society and Bonifas Art Center, was created with funds from the Michigan Humanities Council, an affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.  It will be on display at the Beaumier Center through May 30.  The museum is open and free to the public.  Hours are Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This exhibition features dozens of interpretive panels, photographs and articles telling the story of one of the Upper Peninsula’s most unique communities.  In the 20th century many resource-based company towns in Michigan's Upper Peninsula shared Nahma's uncertain future.  Nahma's plight caught the eye of the nation when it was put up for sale.  The owners mounted a campaign to find a suitable buyer not only for the sawmill business assets, but also for the community itself.  A national search for potential buyers culminated in a 1951 cover story in Life magazine that built the mystique that still surrounds Nahma today: a “town for sale.”  Since those early days, there remains the strong sense of community that defied the fate of other company towns.  Nahma would not become a ghost town.

What was it about Nahma that kept it alive when so many other company towns simply passed out of existence?   Selling Nahma will examine how and why this unusual business decision led to Nahma's survival and what makes it notable amongst Upper Peninsula communities. Gathered through oral histories, film, documentary, photographs and personal reminiscences, Selling Nahma will offer a personal perspective from the remaining townspeople and former residents. Find out what it was like to be living in a company town at the time of the sale.