World War I & the Copper Country (WW1CC) is a community-wide centennial commemoration of the Copper Country’s participation (Houghton, Keweenaw, Baraga, and Ontonagon counties) in the First World War. The project is a grant-supported collaboration of exhibits and events to be provided for free to the public from June 21 to November 11, 2018. This project’s partners include Michigan Technological University, the Carnegie Museum of the Keweenaw, and Finlandia University.
A multifaceted cultural program commemorating the local experience of and participation in World War I, WW1CC brings together local and regional residents, students, veterans, academics, and historic preservation professionals interested in the U.P. Copper Country’s role in the Great War. Through a series of historical exhibits, lectures, discussions, film screenings, media installations, and performing and visual arts events, the program examines the integral part played by small town rural communities in the conflict, as well as the war’s social, economic, and cultural impacts and legacies on family and community life. In addition to raising awareness about the Great War’s significance as a geopolitical world event, we hope WW1CC’s program of exhibits and events will promote conservation and critical reflection on a wide range of discourses concerning war; for example, the nature and meaning of war, the human experience of war, war’s memory, community and wartime crisis, international conflict and resolution, and recovery and restoration in war’s aftermath.
Original research on local community records and artifacts (personal letters, scrapbooks, photos, art, newspaper clippings, military papers, and material objects, ephemera, etc.) will be exhibited at the Carnegie Museum of the Keweenaw, Finlandia University Finnish American Heritage Center, and the J.R. Van Pelt & Opie Library at Michigan Tech.
**The sponsoring institutions awarding grants include the Michigan Humanities Council; Keweenaw National Historical Park Advisory Commission; Finlandia Foundation National Chapter; and Michigan Council on Arts and Community Affairs through the Copper Country Community Arts Center. The following entities from Michigan Tech are also sponsors of WW1CC: The departments of Humanities, Social Sciences, Visual & Performing Arts, Civil Engineering, and Computer Science; College of Sciences & Arts; Office of the Vice President of Student Affairs and Advancement; Institutional Equity; William G. Jackson Center for Teaching and Learning; J.R. Van Pelt & Opie Library; University Marketing and Communications; Film Board; and Facilities Management.