The U.P. Mining town of Republic can be found in Republic Township, Marquette County.

The whole reason the town existed was to accommodate mine workers, giving them and their families a place to live while they toiled underground in the hot, claustrophobic mines. The Republic Mine ended up being one of the most successful in the Upper Peninsula; the mine shaft was over a half-mile deep, plunging 2,910 feet.

TIMELINE (thanx to
1846: Mineral deposit discovered
1854: Mining begins
1870: Republic Iron Company was formed
1871: Republic Mine opens
1871: The town of Republic is created
1873: Post office begins operating
1914: Cleveland Cliffs Iron Company takes over the mine
1927 (approximate): Mine closes

Even though the mine was closed, some ore was occasionally being produced until it shut down in 1981.

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Republic was also called 'Iron City' for a short time and had four separate railroads running through town: Chicago & North Western, Duluth South Shore & Atlantic, Lake Superior & Ishpeming, and Milwaukee Road. According to Michigan Railroads, it was on the CNW railroad that an accident occurred in mid-June, 1900. A passenger train was heading south when it crashed into another train as it sped to the switch. Both locomotives were totaled, 12 ore cars were smashed, an a dozen people were badly injured.

If you decide to take a roadtrip through the U.P., take a drive thru Republic. It's a typical old Michigan mining town, with very little businesses and many, many old miners' homes scattered through the neighborhoods.

Take a look at some photos below!



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