The Calumet Gun Club was founded by Chicago recreational hunters in 1885 and was one of several hunting and fishing clubs in the region at the time. Located just east of the present day US Steel Gary Works harbor, the club’s buildings were still standing when the United States Steel Corporation bought the site inContinue reading “Recreation”

Saving Some Space for Nature

Continuing the tradition of valuing nature within a region of industry, the abandoned Erie-Lackawanna railroad has been repurposed into a walking trail that extends throughout the county along the rail line. Current South Entrance of the Trail, Crown Point2019Jeanene Letcher As industry spread across the region, more and more of the people drawn by theContinue reading “Saving Some Space for Nature”

Farming and Harvesting

Native Americans were the first to develop industry in the Calumet region, through the fur trade with European immigrants. As European settlers populated the region, they brought with them their agricultural practices, recreational pursuits, and other activities of daily life. The coming of the railroads offered opportunities for entrepreneurial local farmers and other small businessesContinue reading “Farming and Harvesting”

Recreation and Tourism

Large resorts like Lassen’s drew tourists to Cedar Lake in the early 1900s. Visitors enjoyed steamboat rides, dances at Lassen’s dance pavilion which floated 300 feet from shore, and fun in the sun. Lassen’s Resort Bathing Beach tokens1910sCedar Lake Historical Association With the arrival of passenger rail in the Calumet region, towns outside of urbanContinue reading “Recreation and Tourism”

Natural Opportunity: Introduction

Shaped by the ebb and flow of ancient glaciers, the land at the southern end of Lake Michigan was seen by some as a source of natural abundance, by others as a challenging place to eke out a living, and by still others as an empty expanse to fill with industry. For thousands of years,Continue reading “Natural Opportunity: Introduction”

Botanical Treasures of the Calumet Dunes

These botanical specimens document the Calumet’s biodiverse dune and swale landscape. The plants were collected by George M. Pinneo, an active botanist, who also served as Gary YMCA director, and was an Olympic wrestling coach. Mr. Pinneo was on the board of directors of the National Dunes Park Association, the first organization to fight forContinue reading “Botanical Treasures of the Calumet Dunes”