When the list of individuals who have been instrumental in the development of the Sault is read, Judge Joseph Hall Steere is sure to be on it. Every person who undertakes a study of U.P. history owes much to Steere, who had an extensive library of volumes related to the region. This collection went to the Carnegie Public Library, later the Bayliss, upon his death, and is still available for use.
The Judge Joseph H. Steere Room houses the library's collection of Michigan-related books, documents, and other materials. The collection focuses primarily on Chippewa, Mackinac, and Luce Counties, but other items of interest are included. Items in this collection include Sault Sainte Marie City Directories dating back to 1888.
Vertical file cabinets house photographs, clippings, and pamphlets on general Michigan topics, and biographical files on select individuals. General and biographical files are available to users of the room. The photograph collection is kept locked at all times. Some photographs are available as digitized images through the library’s website.
The Judge Joseph H. Steere Room also houses a special collection of early Michigan documents, including: American Fur Company Records, Peter B. Barbeau Papers, George Johnston Papers, Joseph Bayliss Papers, Port Mackinac Records, Myron Scranton Papers, Charles H. Chapman Papers, and Miscellaneous Small Collections. Other manuscripts are occasionally added to this collection.
The Steere Collection is located in a separate locked room near the Circulation Desk. Access to the room is dependent on staff availability. Casual browsing of the collection is not permitted. Individuals involved in historical or genealogical research will be asked to sign the guest register before entering the room.
The Judge Joseph H. Steere Room is a partially closed-stack collection, meaning that some items are available on open shelves and other items are kept locked in cabinets. Staff members will retrieve items from the cabinets as researchers request them. Only one item may be removed from the cabinet at a time. If you have questions or need assistance, please see the Reference Librarian.