Beaver Island Historical Society Welcomes You to Our Past

In Response to the COVID-19

Currently, the Beaver Island Historical Society museums are closed for the winter season. We are still planning to open for the 2020 season on June 21. We will provide summer event updates on social media and our websites. If we are still experiencing mandated government restrictions to contain the spread of COVID-19 we will adapt our plans accordingly.

All of our public programs, events, and tours are canceled through May 3. This includes the New Deal Art and Music Weekend that was scheduled for April 17 & 18 in the Detroit / Ann Arbor area. Full refunds are being offered. Given the rapidly changing nature of the outbreak, we are not announcing a new event date at this time. The safety of visitors, members, staff, and volunteers is our top priority, and we will continue to monitor new developments closely.

Lori Taylor-Blitz
BIHS Executive Director

The Beaver Island Historical Society is putting together an art exhibit: June 21-September 12 focused on the Island’s unique environmental biodiversity. We are calling artists to participate in Expressions of Nature- Beaver Island. The exhibition is open to all artists – professional or amateur – who wish to submit their own original works. Entry Deadline May 1, 2020View Details & Entry Form


The anticipated release date is May 15th.

The cost will be $20.00 plus tax and $3.50 for postal delivery.

More information and order form here

The Beaver Island Historical Society was founded in 1957 to collect and share the fascinating history of Beaver Island. A remote island in Lake Michigan, it has witnessed many interesting and unique historical events, and has been home to various groups including Native Americans, a Mormon branch known as the Strangites, Irish immigrants, fisherman, lumberjacks, and many more.

King Strang

King Strang

The Historical Society currently operates two museums on the Island, the Print Shop Museum and the Marine Museum, as well as two additional historical sites: Heritage Park and the Protar Home. We offer several resources and services to our visitors, including genealogical research, copies of archival photos, and a series of historical journals and other books for purchase. Additionally, we host many events throughout the year to promote the Island’s history.

Explore our history, find out about the king, fishing, shipwrecks, island life, natural history, our Irish heritage, and much more.

For an overview of Beaver Island History please visit:

Museum Hours

The Print Shop is closed until May.
The Marine Museum can be toured until Nov 15 by appointment.
In the spring: May 1 - June 20 by appointment.
Museums will open for regular hours on June 21, 2020 through September 30, 2020.

Please call 231.448.2254 for more information.

Construction Update

Please note on your donation for which project you would like to apply it to or it will be applied to the general fund. Read about our various projects below.

Construction Update 12-19-2019

From Our Facebook Page

View the most recent updates at

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Summer Update:

The Beaver Island Historical Society is making plans for the museums to open in July. However in the new Post-COVID environment we must be patient and follow the Executive Orders (it could be later). We MISS greeting our visitors and look forward to the day we can enjoy their company and reveal the new museum addition. Our priority must be to protect the health of our Docents and Staff and ensure the community our facilities are a safe place to visit.

At this point, June events and museum hours are cancelled. Museum Week and our August events are not canceled. However, we may need to produce our Museum Week events digitally. The Society opted to wait until our June board meeting to make the final decision about July events and may need to decide the fate of August events in the same manner.

Lighthouse Tours have changed. Unfortunately, we will not have tours at Whiskey Point this year. However, the community and visitors will have access to the Beaver Head Lighthouse in July on the weekends. A volunteer will be on site to greet and admit visitors in the tower.

All visitors will be asked to respect social distancing, use hand sanitizer upon entrance at ALL sites and wear a mask as directed in the State of Michigan Executive Orders. The museums will open at partial capacity and we will need to limit the number of people in the museums and the Protar Home.

The museums will be open three days a week (weekends and 1 weekday) and will be thoroughly sanitized between each shift. For safety reasons: all interactive exhibits will be removed from museums this year. Visitors will be asked to refrain from touching exhibits and gift shop items. The gift shops will only display one of each inventory item and the Museum Attendant will retrieve the items for purchase.

The community will be allowed to make reservations for visiting times outside of the posted hours by calling the Print Shop Office. The office will open in mid-June.

Folks, this is a work in progress and subject to change. Any questions? Please call the Print Shop Museum @ (231) 448-2254 and leave a message. Someone will call you back 🙂
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Comment on Facebook 188376014704029_1461016257439992

Great job! Thoughtful, considerate, balancing health and access. Thanks.

Just donated in memory of Rod Nackerman.

Love that you are being so cautious

Thank you!

Wanted to go.

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Beaver Island Historical Society introduces ‘Get to the Point’ for quick Beaver Island history. ‘Get to the Point’ is a delightful series designed to engage our audience, at a social distance, by sharing the beauty and unique history of Beaver Island. Don’t worry, we’ll get right to the point in these short videos.

During these uncertain and unprecedented times we are seeking alternative ways to engage our audience and raise funds for operational support. If you enjoy our videos please consider making a donation. Enjoy!

Please drop your favorite photo or story of Whiskey Point Lighthouse in the comments. We would love to hear from you!

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Video image

Comment on Facebook Beaver Island ...

Courtesy of Jane Frisque, a shot of the old McDonough's Market in the 1970's, with Skip McDonough on the ladder. ... See MoreSee Less

Courtesy of Jane Frisque, a shot of the old McDonoughs Market in the 1970s, with Skip McDonough on the ladder.

Comment on Facebook Courtesy of Jane ...

Jackson Frederick Smith


R.I.P. Skip

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Photography by Frank Solle / Stillpoint Photography