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As Remote as the Moon: Soo Locks in Photos

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The Soo Locks: an incredible engineering feat in a location described by nineteenth century lawmaker Henry Clay as being the "remotest settlement in the United States, if not the moon." In this new exhibition, the Clarke is delighted to showcase dozens of visually stunning photographs, many rarely seen before, documenting the history of this important transportation link.

In 2016, the Clarke was contracted by the US Army Corps of Engineers to digitize and preserve over 1,700 glass, photographic negatives dating from 1885-1941. The images document the construction and operations of three of the locks at the Soo complex. Our exhibition draws from these images, as well as original documents and contemporary photographs, to explain the impact of one of North America's greatest engineering accomplishments.

Clarke Historical Library Speaker Series

Spring 2017 Speaker Series Schedule

Paul R. Tregurtha 2014-05.JPGThursday, February 23 
(Exhibit Opening): The Soo Locks
​Michelle Briggs, Director of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Soo Locks Visitor Center and award-winning photographer, will discuss the Locks.​​


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Monday, February 27​
Jack Deo: The Gems of Lake Superior: Brainard Freemont Child’s 3D Voyage in 1870 Lake Superior Views
B.F. Childs was one of the most prolific photographers of the Lake Superior region. Photographer and collector Jack Deo will travel back in time to present a 3D slide show of historic Lake Superior scenes including Native Americans, copper and iron mining camps and towns, lake transportation, and the beautiful scenery. 3D glasses will be provided.

Thursday, March 16​
Sally Howell
Author of  Old Islam in Detroit: Rediscovering the Muslim-American Past (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014)

Monday, March 20
Readings from African Fairy Tales 
This program is presented in partnership with the African Humanitarian Educational Research Organization (AHERO), a CMU student organization. 

Sunday, April 2
Commemoration of U.S Entry into World War I​ 
On April 2, 1917, Woodrow Wilson asked Congress to declare war on Germany.  This remembrance is presented in cooperation with CMU’s  Center for International Ethics .

All presentations begin at 7:00 in the Park Library Auditorium. A reception in the Clarke Historical Library will follow each presentation. Individuals in need of an accommodation should contact the Library at or by phone at 989-774-1100.​​​​​