Beaver Island Historic Landmarks and Artifacts Receiving Renovations and Restoration
If you’re a lover of all things history you need to make your way to Beaver Island. There you will find the Mormon Print Shop, a museum that houses countless artifacts that date back 100+ years. “This was the original print shop for when the Mormons occupied the island in the 1850’s. It was built as a print shop for Jesse Strang. In here they published the first newspaper north of Grand Rapids,” says Director of the Beaver Island Historical Society, Lori Taylor-Blitz.
This museum has been around for approximately 170 years and needs a few upgrades. The Historical Society plans on expanding and renovating the museum. “Inside we’re going to do some renovations/repairs to some of the flooring and make it an environmentally controlled area. We’ll have some heating and air conditioning vents put in and electrical upgrades,” says Taylor-Blitz.
Another Beaver Island staple is getting restored, the “Hauling in the Net” mural by Zoltan Sepeshy. Within the last few weeks it was sent to Detroit to get a face-lift by a qualified conservator. Pasqua Warstler says, “It was commissioned in 1938 and finished in 1940. Zoltan Sepeshy was commissioned by the federal government under F.D.R.’s ‘New Deal Project’. It was a time when the government was trying hard to put people back to work. They were trying to remind the American populous that we are going to be okay.”
This mural is significant to Beaver Island because it portrays the history of the first Irish settlers. Pasqua Warstler says, “It’s beginning the next chapter of it’s life by a qualified conservator. He is certified by the government to work on the New Deal Era artwork.”
The mural will eventually make its way back to the Marine Museum. If you want more information on the Beaver Island Historical Society and their upcoming events/projects, click here.