The Phoenix church
St. Mary’s Church was built in 1858 to serve the Catholic residents in the nearby mining community of Cliff, scene of the area’s first major copper discovery in 1844. Services continued until 1899 when the church was dismantled and reassembled in Phoenix, where it was renamed The Church of the Assumption. Masses were held until 1957, when the last service marked a century of providing spiritual guidance to mining families and their descendants.
(Photo: The Blessing of the Pets is an annual event at the Phoenix Church.)
In 1985 the Keweenaw County Historical Society took over the property and began extensive repair and restoration work. The church now appears much as it did when folks from another century knelt in prayer, a fitting memorial to one chapter of Keweenaw’s proud heritage. Although now deconsecrated, the church is still used for weddings and memorial services.
(Photo: A Memorial Mass is held at the church each September.)
Visiting the Phoenix Church
Hours & Admission-
All sites are closed for the season
100 years ago-
The ship was repaired and served a long life on The Great Lakes. When it was finally scrapped, its mast was acquired by Captain Richard Metz and donated to KCHS where it is now displayed.
You can find a bounty of stories about Keweenaw shipwrecks in our triannual newsletter The Superior Signal by becoming a member.