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Hometown Tourist: Little Traverse History Museum

If the walls of the could talk, they would have 127 years of history to tell.

David Lyden and Erin Malone visit in this week’s Hometown Tourist, where what once was a train station is now a museum full of local history.

“The Little Traverse History Museum is housed in a train station that was built in 1892 for the Chicago and West Michigan railroad, so we’re celebrating our 127th year as a building,” said Jane Garver, co-executive director at the Little Traverse History Museum.

127 years the Little Traverse Historical Museum has served as a destination in many ways.

The trains that used to run through here used to bring people up from Chicago and St. Louis until the 1960s.

Now this depot just transports people through Northern Michigan by virtue of story and local history, from the depot itself to Ernest Hemingway’s roots on Walloon Lake, to Native American history, including the man Petoskey was named after.

The museum features many things like a 150 pound Petoskey stone found in the Bear River to a carriage from one of the first doctor’s in the area, to an old Petoskey Brewing Company advertisement on a beaver pelt.

“Our Lasting Legacies Exhibit about the women of Little Traverse Bay came about because we were going through our exhibits and discovered we didn’t have any pictures of women in the museum, and we said we need to do something about that. So we asked the community to contribute stories about women they felt were important in their lives,” explained Garver.

It’s an ever transforming place, run by volunteers and cherished by locals and visitors alike.

“To show them some of the little things about Petoskey that are still here today and to share that with them is a lot of fun,” said Garver.