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About Hartwick Pines Logging Museum

Michigan was the national leader in lumber production from 1870-1900. Explore the Hartwick Pines Logging Museum to find out more about this important industry.

Built in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps, the two museum buildings recreate original logging camp structures of the 1890s. A bunkhouse, cook’s shack, mess hall and blacksmith shop are just some of the exhibits that visitors can explore. Also, on site are equipment used to haul logs and build logging roads and a 1914 steam engine and sawmill. Throughout the summer, costumed historic interpreters demonstrate activities of an 1890s logging camp. Experience life as a lumberjack by trying your hand at cooking, laundry and even some camp games.

Look Around

Tools inside the logging museum at Hartwick Pines State Park.

Hartwick Pines exhibits include several of the tools that "shanty boys" used during Michigan's lumbering days, including axes, saws and hammers. Summer visitors can try their hand with the cross-cut saw.

Bowls, rolling pin, stove and cooking supplies in the cooking area of the logging museum at Hartwick Pines State Park.

Visitors can see the cook's shack and mess hall, where the lumbermen's breakfast and dinner were prepared and served.

Exhibit inside the logging museum shows checker board, broom, buckets, inside Hartwick Pines State Park.

It wasn't all work in the logging camps. Play a game of checkers on the homemade checker boards. Also see the work that "chore boys" did in the camps such as sweeping the floors and hauling buckets of water with the neck yoke.

Big Wheels used for logging at Hartwick Pines State Park.

Outdoor exhibits of large logging equipment include the logging wheels, bunk sled, and road building equipment. The Michigan logging wheels, better known as "Big Wheels," made popular in Michigan when logging became a year-round industry.

Visitors stand around a dutch over at the outdoor cooking demonstration at Hartwick Pines State Park.

Throughout the summer and at some special programs, the museum hosts camp cooking demonstrations, where visitors can see and smell some of the food that the "shanty boys" ate for their breakfast and dinner.

Updated 03/13/2023