Winter is here! The snow may have left us for a little while, but anyone can tell you that it will surely be back! It's hard to imagine how people coped without snowplows and snowblowers but somehow they did. I imagine that there were some hardworking horses before automobiles and tractors became more common in the snow removal industry.

Winter Toboggan

Harbor Springs Winter Bay

Our Holiday Open House is taking place on Saturday, December 29 from 11:00am to 3:00pm. The 20 man bobsled pictured above will be out and we will be showing a slide show of other historic winter photos from Harbor Springs and surrounding areas.


Last modified on Continue reading


One of the most fascinating things about going through older photographs of Harbor Springs are the glimpses of the past that they bring. You can recognize buildings and places in these old photographs and see how they were 100 years ago. Often as a child, I would look at the world around me and wonder how it looked in the past, without paved roads, cars, or houses. What activities went on in these familiar places that I knew nothing about? This is the reason that photographs of recognizable places are so exciting to me, it shows how they looked in the past and I can reconcile the difference in my mind.

Ingalls and Main Street

Here are two photographs I came across in the Berry Ratliff collection of the Shay Family. The first shows Ingalls St. in Harbor Springs with Dorothy Shay in her little car in 1913. The two houses are still standing so the street looks much the same as it did in this photograph 100 years ago. The second photograph is of East Hill coming into downtown Harbor Springs. One thing I notice between the older photograph and the modern one is the lack of trees in the past. The bay was clearly visible whereas now there are trees that somewhat block the view. The differences and similarities in both pictures show just how much has changed as well as the things that have not.


Last modified on Continue reading


Hello everyone!

My name is Talia and I have been working as an archivist and collections manager at the Harbor Springs Area Historical Society since June. I grew up in Harbor Springs but I have never been so aware of the history of the town as I have been going through the archives. There are so many great things here on a large array of subjects that I can’t wait to show them all to the town!

Backus Republican Caucus

Recently, in honor of the upcoming presidential election in November, I gathered together interesting items from the archive on the subject of older elections in Harbor Springs and put them on a temporary display on the second floor. Items include an instructional ballot from the 1900 election with vote tallies for each candidate and the Republican Caucus poster pictured as well as other items from Harbor Springs election history. Please come to the museum and view these fascinating pieces from the archive!

Our Museum hours are Friday and Saturday 11:00 am to 3:00 pm and our Office hours are Tuesday through Friday 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.


Last modified on Continue reading


At a recent gathering of historical society and museum folk, our group facilitator started off our meeting by asking us to introduce ourselves, our organizations and, as an icebreaker of sorts, tell what we like most about living in northern Michigan in January.

Postcard Winter

My answer was simple. I like January because, slowly but surely, the days are getting longer. Those who know me well know that winter generally takes fourth place in my favorite season rankings. January ranks equally low amongst my favorite months. But in this new year, something was different about January.


Last modified on Continue reading

History Collage

That's right, the Harbor Springs Area Historical Society is turning 20. Can you believe it?

The date was March 6, 1990, when founders Marge May, David deWindt, Linda Rosenow, Jan Morley, Nancy Morton, Nancy Gurney and Arthur Barnes had their first official meeting.


Last modified on Continue reading

Exhibit Hours

Friday & Saturday
11:00 am to 3:00 pm

Office Hours

Tuesday - Friday
9:00 am to 5:00 pm

January 1, 2020

Museum Address

349 E. Main Street
    Harbor Springs, MI 49740

(231) 526-9771

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Newsletter Sign-up

To stay informed of upcoming events and exhibits, sign up for our HSAHS eNewsletter here. It's free!

Follow Us

google  facebook  twitter  youtube


See what We've pinned on Historypin