The Shadow Town of Toivola, Michigan
Up in Michigan's Keweenaw Peninsula nestled in the deep woods area of Houghton County, is an old lumber town - now considered a ghost town by some - that is worth seeking out.
Toivola is four and a half miles north of Donken on M-26. It was founded by a group of settlers from Finland who gave the village its name, which is said to mean either "Vale of Hope" or "Community of Hope". They felt they needed to find a place where hope was eternal, as they had fled Finland to escape the Great Famine of the 1860's.
Thanks once again to the timber trade, this logging camp of Toivola became extremely successful...so much so, that they eventually had a total of THIRTEEN schools! Also a train depot and post office, which opened in 1905 and is still there.
Toivola is very Finn traditional, as they still celebrate 'Juhannus', or the Summer Solstice. There's also an Artesian well down Misery Bay Road near the old Misery Bay School...drive down that road, get a drink, and check out even more old structures.
Very cool area to check out on your Michigan roadtrip...!
MORE OLD NORTHERN MICHIGAN TOWNS: