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Iron Duke Mine Company records

 Collection — Box: 21-02-02
Identifier: MSS-352

Content Description

This material was received in 1 banker box that contained 4 legal-size expanding wallets. The markings on the wallets were: “W31948 Frank Stone-Personal-Iron Duke Mine.” Inside of one was a pocket file with “Frank B. Stone from Bigelow the last gasp I’m sure” written on it. These wallets contained correspondence, large manila envelopes, stock options, proxy certificates, meeting minutes, financial reports, tax records, documents pertaining to the purchase and selling of the mine.

The collection consists of five series:

Legal Documents, 1878-1922 This series consists of 4 files containing legal documents of the Iron Duke Mine Company. Included are the By-Laws and the Memo of Organization for the Iron Duke Mine Company. There are various legal agreements signed by officers of the company and other businesses, organizations, and individuals. Also contained in this series are Certificates of Incorporation, Land Deeds and Leases, Mining Options, Indentures and Bills of Sale. Financial Statements, 1878-1906 This series consists of four folders containing financial documents relating to accounts payable/accounts receivable from 1891-1903, ore shipments from 1890-1906, tax receipts from 1878-1900, and timber recepts from 1881-1898. Minutes, 1883-1911 This series consists of three files of minutes and meeting materials relating to Annual Board of Trustee meetings and Special Stockholder meetings held from 1883-1911. Correspondence, 1888-1920 This series consists of two files of correspondence arranged chronologically from 1888-1920 relating to the day to day operation of the company. Files, Liquidation, 1881-1958 This series consists of 11 files containing materials relating to the Tax Audit and Liquidation of the Iron Duke Mine Company. These files consists of documents for Surrendered Block Certificates and Affidavits of Ownership from 1881-1942. There are files of a Minute Book that was maintained from 1940-1948 consisting of a timeline history of the Iron Duke Mine Company in handwritten form (the timeline history was transcribed by the collection processor and is included), Certificates of Incorporation and tax documents relating to the liquidation and tax audit, tax memos, liens, penalty forms for tax years 1922-1924, tax returns for 1940-1942, an Internal Revenue Service recap report, along with five photographs and negatives of Iron Duke Mine Company property. There are seven correspondence files consisting of correspondence relating to the liquidation, tax audit, and stockholders from 1941-1958. There is one file of bank statements relating to the payment of stockholders during the liquidation period from 1941-1952. There is one file of legal documents containing deeds, bonds, and affidavits relating to the liquidation from 1941-1948.


  • 1867 - 1962


Conditions Governing Access

This collection has no restrictions and is open for access.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to publish material from MSS-352, Iron Duke Mine Company records, must be obtained from the University Archivist. The University Archivist may be reached by phone at 906-227-1225, or e-mail, The University Archivist may also be reached in Room 126 of the Learning Resource Center, Northern Michigan University, Marquette, MI.

Biographical / Historical

The Iron Duke Mine Company, formed in 1881, was a New York corporation that purchased lands and mineral rights in the Ishpeming region of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. These lands had been previously worked by the Collins Iron Company (organized in 1859 and operated until 1872) and the Buckingham Iron Company. The Collins Iron Company land was sold at foreclosure and passed by deed to Albert M. Bigelow in 1880. He conveyed the land to the Wellington Mine (Bigelow was the President of that company) during that same year and in 1881 it was conveyed to the Iron Duke Mine. The Iron Duke Mine Company did not operate any mines but leased its mineral rights to others on a rental or royalty basis. In 1884 the Iron Duke Mine sold a railroad right-of-way across their lands to the Marquette & Western Railroad and in 1886 gave a lease option to the Cleveland Mine for half of its properties. After Cleveland Mine abandoned their option in 1887, the Iron Duke leased its mining rights to Ely, Ames & Linquist, operating under the name “East New York Iron Mining Company," who would mine the property until the lease was terminated in 1893. The years of 1893-1898 found the Iron Duke Mine Company without a tenant, without operations, and with no income, causing a default on taxes. In April 1906, Cleveland Cliffs Iron Company paid the Iron Duke Mine Company a real estate fee of $65,000 and signed a 99-year mining lease. Cleveland Cliffs did not immediately use their mining rights but instead developed a company golf course on the surface. In 1921 the State of New York declared the corporate charter cancelled for non-payment of franchise taxes and no effort was made by the Iron Duke Mine Company to extend or renew the charter. Cleveland-Cliffs Iron Mining Company purchased the reserved mining rights for $30,000 and the Iron Duke Mine Company went into liquidation.


1 Cubic Feet (1 archival box)

Language of Materials


Custodial History

These materials were brought to the Archives by Pamela Christensen, Library Director at Peter White Public Library and given to the Interim Archivist Jaime Ganzel during the Summer of 2013.

Condition Description

The materials in this collection are yellowing with age but are readable. There are documents which needed to be placed in protective sleeves and there are staples and paperclips that are rusted and needed to be removed. Some documents have rips from aging and were repaired. Overall everything is in good condition and the collection required a minimum of preservation.

Iron Duke Mine Company records
Glenda K. Ward, Arrangement and Description Specialist
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Central Upper Peninsula and Northern Michigan University Archives Repository

Harden Learning Resources Center 126
1401 Presque Isle Ave
Marquette 49855 United States
906-227-1333 (Fax)


This collection guide includes collections from member organizations of UPLINK (the Upper Peninsula Digital Network) as well as the Central Upper Peninsula and Northern Michigan University Archives. UPLINK collections document the history of the Upper Peninsula broadly, while the Central UP & NMU Archives focuses on such topics as Northern Michigan University history, the local iron mining industry, and the politics, economics, religion, environment, and culture of the Central Upper Peninsula region.

These finding aids will give you an overview of the contents and context of each collection. Finding aids only exist for collections that each organization has shared with UPLINK or (in the case of the NMU Archives) for processed collections. For a more comprehensive list of collections that might help with your research, please contact the relevant heritage organization(s) directly.

Northern Michigan University
1401 Presque Isle Ave. • Marquette, MI 49855-5301 • 906–227–1000
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