The Minnesota Museum of Mining offers visitors an opportunity to actually climb aboard equipment used to mine the Mesabi Range's rich iron ore. A castle built in 1933 out of stone is the entrance to this showcase of mining history. Climb aboard mining trucks, see a 1907 steam locomotive, or tour replicas of an underground mine and mining town.
Trucks displayed at the museum range from a 1930s White dump truck with a two-ton capacity to an oversized 120-ton WABCO Electrohaul. Imagine as you sit in the driver's seat becoming the operator of one of the fastest steam shovels ever made, a rare 1910 Atlantic Steam Shovel. Only six of these shovels were built and they were the prototype of the shovels used to dig the Panama Canal and remove the soil overburden on the Mesabi Range.
View a working diorama of the Great North Railroad, created by F. Lee Jaques, or displays illustrating the lifestyle of the pioneers of the Mesabi Range. Visitors walk down into a simulated underground mine drift. Catch a glimpse of a steam-driven diamond drill still in working condition, or visit an authentic log cabin with Finnish sauna. The museum is a great place to experience life in the mining era.
Directions: Exit off Highway 169 across from Ironworld by McDonald's onto Ironworld Road. Follow .1 mile to stop sign. Take a right onto Highway 73 North. Follow .6 mile until you see the museum sign. Turn left by the water tower. The road will curve to the right.
Admission: Open Monday-Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $4 for adults, $3 for children 5-17, $3.50 for seniors, and children under 5 are admitted free. Call for group tours and school group reservations. Rates subject to change. Group tour guide onsite. Available by appointment. Open Memorial Day through Labor Day.
Duluth, Missabe & Iron Range Railroad C-3 class 2-8-0