Secrets of the Sea: Inside the Marquette Maritime Museum
Episode 16521st June 2024 • Total Michigan • Cliff Duvernois
00:00:00 00:25:59

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What better way to appreciate Marquette than through its history? Hilary Billman, the Executive Director of the Marquette Maritime Museum discusses the museum's efforts to restore trust with the community after financial mismanagement, Hilary's journey from St. Louis to Marquette, and the challenges and successes of reviving the museum, including updates to exhibits and new additions like the opening of the second floor of the lighthouse for artifacts.

Links:

Marquette Maritime Museum Website: https://mqtmaritimemuseum.com

Marquette Maritime Museum Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/mqtmaritime.museum

Subscribe to our Email Newsletter: https://totalmichigan.com/join/

Find us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/totalmichigan

Watch on YouTube: https://youtube.com/@totalmichigan

Show Notes:

00:00 Introduction 

01:03 Exploring Marquette Maritime Museum

02:00 Hilary Billman's Journey to Marquette

06:30 Challenges and Rebuilding the Museum

12:05 Coming Back Stronger

13:33 Exhibits and Artifacts at the Museum

15:58 The Marquette Lighthouse

18:28 Special Exhibits and Events

24:09 Visiting the Museum and Final Thoughts

Transcripts

Hilary Billman:

And I feel like we did lose a lot of respect from community

2

:

members because of what happened.

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:

When people have seen what's happened

to the museum, we really cleaned it

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up Inside outside looks fantastic.

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:

We're really really trying to

do things for the community.

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:

It's just really important

to me that we look good.

7

:

And we look appealing.

8

:

And tourists want to come here.

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:

And even local people want to come here.

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:

So it took a lot of work And it took

a lot of money slowly over the years

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:

to sort of build that trust back.

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I think.

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Cliff Duvernois: Hello everyone and

welcome back to Total Michigan where

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we interview ordinary Michiganders

doing some pretty extraordinary things.

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I'm your host Cliff DuVernois.

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So it's summertime and that means

we are traveling and one of the top

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destinations in Michigan that people

like to go is the Upper Peninsula.

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And I'm very fortunate because I've been

spending a lot of time in Marquette.

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And the more time I spend here with

the locals, the more I'm loving it.

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One of the things that I always love

to do when coming to a new town is

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talk to one of the local museums.

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Because they really know the history

and the story behind the town, and

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can really help shine a good light on

what it is that people here are doing.

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So with that being said, today I'm

at the Marquette Maritime Museum.

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With executive director Hilary Billman.

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Hilary.

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How are you?

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Hilary Billman: I'm great.

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Thank you.

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Cliff Duvernois: Why don't you tell us

what is the Marquette Maritime Museum?

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Hilary Billman: Well Well, Marquette

started out as a shipping port town.

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And so in the 80s, there was a group

of people that decided that we really

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needed a maritime museum to interpret

and preserve the maritime history of the

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area, which is shipwrecks, lighthouses,

fishing, anything to do with that

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beautiful lake that we're right next to.

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Cliff Duvernois: with the museum,

this was, this primarily started

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off as just a shipping port.

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Hilary Billman: Yes.

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So iron ore was discovered in

the area in the late:

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And they had to get the ore out

of Marquette and get it down, you

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know into the lower Great Lakes.

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And so the Soo Locks opened in 1855.

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And we just became a big shipping

port on lake superior to get

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the iron ore out of Marquette

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Cliff Duvernois: So Hilary, let's take

a step back here for a second and let's

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talk a little bit about your journey.

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So where are you from?

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Where did you grow up?

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Hilary Billman: I grew up in St.

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Louis, Missouri.

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And, yeah, my, my

parents are from England.

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And they, my dad ended up coming

to University of Missouri, St.

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Louis to work as a chemistry professor.

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And they ended up going back to

England to have me their last child.

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But yeah grew up in St.

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Louis and had a great childhood there.

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Cliff Duvernois: So what

brought you you to Marquette?

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Hilary Billman: Marquette

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My husband and I, I'm

married to John Billman.

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He's a writer and a professor

at Northern Michigan University.

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We've lived in a lot of different places.

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We've traveled around a lot.

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And then we had kids and decided

it was time to settle down.

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So we moved here from Oklahoma.

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We've been here this will

be our 11th year here.

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We were looking for just a great

place to raise our children.

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And we found it in Marquette.

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Cliff Duvernois: Now did was

is this one of the situations

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and you said here you go, or

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Hilary Billman: Yes.

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No, this is where we wanted to move here.

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There was a job opening.

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And he applied right

away, and he got the job.

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So we were very lucky that way.

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So yeah, he's in the English department

at Northern Michigan University.

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Cliff Duvernois: So you said something

here I would like to explore.

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but you said this is

where you wanted to go.

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What was it about Marquette in

particular that attracted you to it?

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Hilary Billman: Well, we like snow, which

you have to like if you live in Marquette.

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So, like, we love to cross

country ski and outdoor.

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I mean, we live in a log cabin

just off the Chocolay River,

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about 10 miles south of town.

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It just hit all the, the

boxes that we wanted.

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So now did you go to university?

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Yes I went to DePaul

University in Indiana.

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And then I have a Master of Fine Arts in

Creative Writing and a Master of Arts in

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Technical Writing from Eastern Washington

University in Spokane, Washington.

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And that's where I met my husband.

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Cliff Duvernois: You have been all over.

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So then, with your background,

Wow, so that's a lot.

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Let's step back.

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How did you get involved with the museum?

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Hilary Billman: So when

we lived in Wyoming.

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See I told you we lived everywhere.

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We lived in Wyoming.

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And we lived in a small town that

was mostly coal mining and my husband

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was teaching middle school there.

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And there weren't very many jobs for

people that weren't either teachers

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in the schools or, coal miner.

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And they have a small museum

there that they decided they were

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gonna hire a full time director.

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And they wanted somebody

that could write grants.

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So I applied for the job.

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And I got the job.

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So it was coal mining,

bootlegging, and prostitution.

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and so I started out at this museum.

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And it's I learned as I went and, figured

out how to write grants, how to do the

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exhibits and different things like that.

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And we were there almost seven years

until we decided that we actually

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needed better health insurance.

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And things for our children.

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So my husband started applying

for university jobs at that point.

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So we did move out of Wyoming,

but yeah, I started out not

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knowing a lot about museums.

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And now it has become my career.

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Cliff Duvernois: I know that,

because I know you said you didn't

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start out knowing a lot about it.

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So during all of the college classes

that you took, there was nothing about

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Hilary Billman: No.

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I

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No, I don't have history.

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And I don't have any history background.

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But I've always been fascinated

with history, so that's

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always been a hobby of mine.

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Everywhere we go, we go to museums.

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Sure.

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You know, and I love

finding out about places.

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And then grant writing, grant

writing's, grant writing.

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You just, you learn the

basics of grant writing.

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And that was just my step into that world.

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And, I learned everything from

that, just from that point on.

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Cliff Duvernois: So now you have made

the move from Wyoming to Marquette.

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Your husband's got the job

teaching at the university.

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You got better health insurance.

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How did you get involved with

the Maritime Museum here?

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Hilary Billman: Okay.

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Yeah.

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And I will also say that in

between Wyoming and Marquette,

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we lived in you ready?

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New Mexico, Iowa, and Oklahoma.

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And then Marquette.

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So, yeah.

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So, and ask me the question one more

time, because I got sidetracked with the

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Cliff Duvernois: okay.

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So now your husband has moved

from, where was the last place,

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Hilary Billman: Yeah, Oklahoma,

so how did I get the job?

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Is that what you were asking?

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Yeah, yeah, so I just they

were looking for a director.

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There had been some issues

with the previous director.

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And she wasn't working here in any longer.

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So they were looking for a director.

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And I a friend of mine knew my background

and told another friend who knew a board

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member who contacted me and said You know,

why don't you send in your resume and, you

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know, we'll try to get it set up so we can

come in and talk to some board members.

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And that's where it happened.

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Cliff Duvernois: So what I would like

to do is I would just like to take just

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a quick minute or two to talk about

what happened before you came on board.

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Because I think that's instrumental

in how what a big success this

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museum has come to this day.

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So why don't you talk to us a little

bit about the circumstances that

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brought you into this position.

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Hilary Billman: Right, so when

they hired me, basically the

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museum had no money in the bank.

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And the board was doing everything because

the previous director had embezzled funds

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and pretty much emptied our bank accounts.

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And there were a lot of things going

on that the board didn't know about

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that they very quickly became aware of.

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And so they were looking basically for

somebody to come in and at first just keep

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the doors open and just keep it going.

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Try to get as many volunteers as we could.

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And so they hired me and I, it was

basically like starting over here.

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We did a lot of cleaning

updated a lot of exhibits.

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I started writing grants.

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Saving a little bit of money.

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So slowly our bank account got a

little bit better and healthier.

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Today we're in a great place where

if there's actually something that we

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want to do, we have the funds to do it

And it's our board is really strong.

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Made our board even stronger I

mean they figured out a little

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bit even more about things that

they had to do to run the museum.

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And they've always been a working board

But boy, they really had to dig their

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heels in and get us out of that hole.

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But yeah, it's been a journey, but

we're in a great place right now

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Cliff Duvernois: So, why do you think it

is that, cause with the previous director

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coming on board and seeing how, in what

poor shape the museum was in financially

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speaking, exhibit wise, I can imagine

a lot of trust with the community.

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So why is it that the board

decided to keep pushing through,

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keep this open rather than say,

you know what, it was a good run.

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I think because it

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Hilary Billman: I think because

it is so important to Marquette.

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Preserving the maritime history.

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We are a maritime town.

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And everybody that's on the board.

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We tend to get board members that

aren't just looking for volunteer work.

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They feel very strongly

about the organization.

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Some of them are shipwreck hunters.

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Some of them are former scuba divers.

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Teachers artists, all kinds of

different backgrounds, but they

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all, they really love this place.

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And they want to see it do well.

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We have one of the original six board

members that actually started the

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museum from 1980, is still on the board.

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So there's, I mean, there's a lot of

community collect connections here.

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So it was just they felt they

feel something for this place.

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Cliff Duvernois: And then I can imagine

too with you having built that museum

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essentially from the ground up in Wyoming.

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Coming here, you were able to

bring a lot of that skill set here

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Hilary Billman: Yeah, but they're

both small, non profit museums.

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And, there you rely heavily on volunteers,

So it's recruiting volunteers and,

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knowing how to treat your volunteers.

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So they want to keep coming back,

just all those lessons that I learned

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in Wyoming were instrumental here.

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Cliff Duvernois: And you said

something else, too, that really

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kind of struck my curiosity, is

that a lot of the board members you

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were talking about seem to have a

connection somehow with Lake Superior.

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Like you were talking about shipwreck

divers and things like that.

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How important is that for them to

have that connection to Lake Superior?

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That's

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Hilary Billman: I think it's very

important because it helped me

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even more because when I first

was hired here I mean, I can

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look up the history of the area.

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But I've really had to learn it as I go.

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And now I'm I'm not an expert yet,

but I'm getting really close on

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some of the details I mean, I have

all these dates shoved in my head.

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But they were really helpful.

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Anytime I have a question I can ask

any of them on you know They all have

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their own little area of expertise.

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Cliff Duvernois: Was

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Hilary Billman: And it was

really helpful to be able to ask

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them for help when I need it.

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Cliff Duvernois: And then one of the

things I would like to explore real quick

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is that, after the previous director left.

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And now you have come in and you're

working on building this place up and

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getting money in the, in the checking

account, updating the exhibits.

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One of the big factors that kind

of gets tarnished in this is

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the reputation of the museum.

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And I can imagine a lot of people

were probably pretty upset because

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they've been coming here for years.

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They brought their kids here who

are now bringing their kids here.

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And now all of a sudden boom this

hits and I it was probably big news

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in the area when this came out.

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How do you go about building

back that trust with the public.

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Hilary Billman: Right.

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Well, it was interesting because I

remember reading about it in the paper

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before I'd even considered the job here.

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And I remember thinking,

wow, look what happened here.

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That kind of that rumor mill thing.

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You're like, wow, that's crazy.

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But it is.

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We did lose some members.

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And I feel like we did lose a

lot of respect from community

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members because of what happened.

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Because even though in some ways a

lot of it, you know we didn't do it.

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Somebody else did it.

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It's you know the accountability for it.

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Um, When people have seen what's happened

to the museum, we really cleaned it

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up Inside outside looks fantastic.

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We have brand new windows.

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We were just able to fund a new roof.

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It just we're really trying to

do things for the community.

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where we're placed in the community right

next to the lakeshore on the bike path.

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It's just really important

to me that we look good.

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And we look appealing.

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And tourists want to come here.

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And even local people want to come here.

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So it took a lot of work And it took

a lot of money slowly over the years

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to sort of build that trust back.

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I think.

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Cliff Duvernois: Yeah, and you,

the word that you used there that

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really caught my attention is slowly.

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Yeah.

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Because it's not something that

you can just fix overnight.

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You know, it's showing up

a day after day after day.

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And just keep putting that, that

honesty forward, So to speak.

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And one of the things I know

before the microphones went

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hot, you And I had discussed it.

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But one of the things you talked about

making the board stronger, right?

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I think that's the term that you

used earlier in the interview,

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making the board stronger.

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One of those was creating

a position of treasurer.

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I have never heard of

before in a nonprofit.

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But I think that's an excellent idea.

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Hilary Billman: Yeah, They had to

redo everything with the finances

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on just so nothing happened again

ever and nothing, there's so

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many steps we have to go through.

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And it did.

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I mean, it made us financially very

strong now because we have to be so

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much more accountable for everything

that we do, every penny that comes in.

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But everybody took a different task.

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And worked on it when they had to rebuild

and we had a brand new board member that

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came on as a treasurer and just took a

whole new approach to how we do things.

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Um, you know, We got outside

accountants to look at things and

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all the things that, probably should

have done, but had been done before.

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But, I, for whatever reason.

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It hadn't occurred to some of them to

do it that way, but now we're doing it.

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Cliff Duvernois: For our audience

we're going to take a quick

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break and thank our sponsors.

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When we come back, uh, we're going

to talk about, uh, how the museum has

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improved some of the exhibits that you

can see when you come here and what

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you can expect when you come here.

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We'll see you after the break.

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Cliff Duvernois: Hello everyone and

welcome back to Total Michigan, where

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we interview ordinary Michiganders

doing some pretty extraordinary things.

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I'm your host Cliff DuVernois.

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Today we're at the Marquette

Maritime Museum with Executive

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Director Hilary Billman.

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And Hilary before the break, we

were talking about how the museum

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is basically weathered this storm.

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No pun intended.

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And it's starting to come

back better than ever.

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What I would like to do is I

would like to talk about, because

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there's so much stuff here.

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This place is like densely packed.

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It's almost a little bit overwhelming.

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But the exhibits that you got here, all

of the, All the goodies that you got here.

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Where did that come from?

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Is it just is it private donations?

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Is it how does that work?

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Hilary Billman: work?

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So most of the items that we

have, most of the artifacts are

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donations, private donations.

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We do have some loans from like

the United States Coast Guard

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on some of our bigger artifacts.

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Um, We try not to do a lot of

loans just because we're not, we

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don't have a lot of storage area.

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So it just, if we have to store

things for people, it doesn't

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really work that well for us.

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But yeah, most of the stuff has been

loaned from people throughout the

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years, since we started in 1980.

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Cliff Duvernois: then how do you go

about adding this stuff to your exhibit

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because every museum's got a flow to it

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So, the amount of square footage you

have in here is at a premium, so until

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you buy another building You kind

of have to work with what you got.

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Hilary Billman: Yes.

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Cliff Duvernois: how do you work

work to get in these new exhibits

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or these new donations that

people have got that come in?

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Hilary Billman: Right, so if we

have something that comes in that

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we want to immediately exhibit, then

we have to take something else out.

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It all becomes just figuring

out, how we're gonna rotate.

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A lot of the things that we have

in here, we don't rotate just

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because they're so important.

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Like, our Fresnel lens collection is

one of the best on the Great Lakes.

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We've got a diorama of the

shipwreck of the Maryland.

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And A couple of really important

shipwrecks that we have.

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We also have exhibits

dedicated specifically to them.

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But other than that, there are places

where, like from last year, if you came

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back like we're sitting right next to

a case right now where this is a case

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where I can easily pull things out

and put things back in if I need to.

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But, and we also have a exhibit

space right next to our children's

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corner where I can change things

out every year if I want to.

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Um, And so I try to do something really

different than what we're doing with

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the rest of the museum in that space.

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Cliff Duvernois: space.

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Now, it's not just the museum,

but you also have a lighthouse.

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Hilary Billman: We do.

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Yes.

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Yes.

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The lighthouse is actually

owned by the city of Marquette.

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It was previously owned by the Coast Guard

it was deeded to the city in:

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But we have been doing tours of

the lighthouse since about:

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Even when it was Coast Guard property.

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We had special permission to go through

the Coast Guard grounds and do the tours.

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We do three tours a day.

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Tuesday through Sunday, closed on Mondays.

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And those are done specifically

by our amazing crew of volunteers.

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We have volunteers that have

been coming back for years just

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to do the lighthouse tours.

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Now, in the lighthouse, there is, you can

go on the first floor of the lighthouse,

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where we have a lot of exhibits.

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There's also a little basement space.

379

:

Just this past year, the city has redone

the second floor of the lighthouse, which

380

:

has not been open to the public in years.

381

:

So we kind of have the second floor

of the lighthouse is a blank slate

382

:

of all these empty rooms right now.

383

:

They just finished painting it.

384

:

And they're going to be

doing the floors soon.

385

:

So we're actually, we do have more exhibit

space up there that we're going to do

386

:

take some of the things from the museum.

387

:

And some of the things from the first

floor in the lighthouse that sort of

388

:

we can dedicate into specific exhibits

on shipwrecks and families in the

389

:

lighthouse and that kind of thing.

390

:

Yeah, we're very lucky to be able to

have this lighthouse to tour also.

391

:

Cliff Duvernois: Now because you've

got all this unfettered access to

392

:

it, and now the second floor is open,

The question for me then is that,

393

:

does this give you another place to

put all these historical artifacts?

394

:

Hilary Billman: It does.

395

:

One thing about the lighthouse

though is there's no heat up there.

396

:

And so anything we put up there has to be

able to withstand, no heat kind of thing.

397

:

And although, so we're a maritime museum

too, which means a lot of our artifacts

398

:

can withstand, you know, weather.

399

:

Which is the point of the maritime.

400

:

Yeah, so we think about that

when we redo that second floor.

401

:

We'll think about, how we're

going to do that with the no

402

:

heat and keeping things up there.

403

:

And sometimes if you have like photographs

and things, it just means you have to,

404

:

get new copies of the photographs and

change them out every couple of years.

405

:

Cause, it's humid or, or

something up there, there's no

406

:

humidity control or anything.

407

:

It's, it's really just an old

lighthouse that you get to walk through.

408

:

Cliff Duvernois: And somebody

lived in that at one point

409

:

Hilary Billman: Oh yeah, yeah,

there were two apartments.

410

:

And there, it's 45 steps to

get up into the lighthouse.

411

:

And the Coast Guard families that used

to live there right before they stopped

412

:

having them live there used to have

to carry their groceries up 45 steps.

413

:

And they didn't like that and,

you know, it's kind of an old,

414

:

damp building and so, yeah,

415

:

Cliff Duvernois: Yes.

416

:

Hilary Billman: wasn't the most

popular place to live towards the end.

417

:

Cliff Duvernois: So let's talk a little

bit about because one of the things,

418

:

you know, with museums is you, you make

it a point to have rotating exhibits

419

:

through here throughout the years,

probably, talk to us about what are some

420

:

of those exhibits that are going on now?

421

:

Hilary Billman: Probably our most

famous exhibits that we have in

422

:

here now are the Fresnel lenses

that we have in our main gallery.

423

:

So we have a collection of Fresnel

lenses, which are the original lenses

424

:

that they used in lighthouses that

are made of glass in France from,

425

:

anywhere from the 1860s up until they,

they made them up into the:

426

:

We have the number two Fresnel

lens from Standard Rock, which is

427

:

a huge, beautiful piece of artwork.

428

:

That's one of the artifacts that

we have that belong to the U.

429

:

S.

430

:

Coast Guard that's on

permanent display here.

431

:

So, we try to change out the exhibit

that's around the Fresnel lenses

432

:

because those aren't going anywhere.

433

:

So we can update some of the things

going on with the lighthouses or every

434

:

once in a while, we'll get another

type of lighthouse lens that we can

435

:

add to the collection to show how

they've progressed through the years.

436

:

So we're always trying

to do that kind of thing.

437

:

Every year I come in here.

438

:

And I look around and I think,

okay, what needs to be updated?

439

:

What haven't we done in a while?

440

:

What needs to be updated?

441

:

And like We're sitting right

in front of an exhibit that we

442

:

updated just a couple of years ago.

443

:

If you would have seen what the

walls looked like on this exhibit

444

:

about five years ago, This would have

been your first choice to update.

445

:

They were, it was not very pretty.

446

:

And so one of our board

members is a mural artist.

447

:

So she came in and just,

painted some, yeah, yeah.

448

:

So we, we're so lucky she comes in

and does some of that stuff for us.

449

:

So yeah, we just, we try to update

everything at least two exhibits

450

:

a year is how we try to do it.

451

:

Cliff Duvernois: To go back to the

Fresnel lenses, because I'm really

452

:

intrigued by this whole concept, So

for somebody who might be listening

453

:

to this, what is a Fresnel lens?

454

:

How big are they?

455

:

And you talked about how

they came from France.

456

:

Hilary Billman: Yes, so the

Fresnel lenses were the original

457

:

lenses that were in lighthouses.

458

:

Now they have the LED lenses

that you don't need to tend to.

459

:

You just go and check to make sure

they're turned on or whatever.

460

:

So the Fresnel lenses used to be sometimes

they used whale oil to keep them lit,

461

:

sometimes kerosene and then gasoline.

462

:

And eventually they were electrified.

463

:

But they were all made

especially for in house lighting.

464

:

each lighthouse that they sat in.

465

:

So they came in six sizes.

466

:

One is the largest.

467

:

Six is the smallest.

468

:

There were no number

ones on the Great Lakes.

469

:

So number two is the biggest

one on the Great Lakes.

470

:

Ones are usually on the Atlantic seaboard.

471

:

So we have a number two

Fresnel Lens in our collection.

472

:

We have a three and a half.

473

:

And we have a four, and the four that we

have is the exact same one they would have

474

:

had in the Marquette Harbor Lighthouse.

475

:

So they don't make Fresnel lenses anymore.

476

:

So there aren't very many of

them in the world anymore.

477

:

So if, if we have them,

you're lucky to have them.

478

:

So the fact that we have

three, we feel very lucky.

479

:

And people come in here and don't

understand exactly what they are.

480

:

But it's just stunning when

you see it for the first time.

481

:

Cliff Duvernois: the first time.

482

:

How big is

483

:

Hilary Billman: They come in

different shapes and so it just

484

:

depends how big the light is that,

I mean, they're not specific sizes.

485

:

It's just, you know, that like,

so Number one is the biggest.

486

:

Number six is the smallest.

487

:

And they're made to order to

fit in the certain lighthouses.

488

:

Cliff Duvernois: Okay, and then if

somebody were to come here, they've never

489

:

been here before, talk to us about what

they can expect when they come here.

490

:

I know you talked about

the Fresnel lenses.

491

:

What are some other things that you

think that people, if they were going to

492

:

come here, make it a point to see this?

493

:

Hilary Billman: Right, so we have two

other exhibits that I'm really proud of.

494

:

The first one is right

when you walk in the door.

495

:

We have it's called the Darter Dace Annex.

496

:

We had a captain from World War

II named David McClintock, who's

497

:

from Marquette, who was the captain

of a submarine called the U.

498

:

S.

499

:

S.

500

:

Darter.

501

:

And he was really instrumental in the

United States winning the Battle of Leyte

502

:

Gulf in the Philippines in World War II.

503

:

And we have an entire

room dedicated to that.

504

:

The exhibit includes a working periscope

in the middle of the room so you can look

505

:

in the periscope and do a complete 360.

506

:

Like we just had a field trip in this

morning and the kids can find the

507

:

lighthouse and then they turn and they

say, Hey, Oh, look, there's somebody

508

:

walking on the bike path and they, yeah.

509

:

So it's really fun to look

through the periscope.

510

:

Cliff Duvernois: you say

it's functioning it's

511

:

Hilary Billman: functioning periscope.

512

:

Yes, it's great.

513

:

Yeah.

514

:

Yeah.

515

:

So that's one thing

that people really like.

516

:

And I don't think people

understand really how instrumental

517

:

McClintock was in this battle.

518

:

I mean, even people from Marquette

haven't really heard of him in that sense.

519

:

And so it's nice to be able to

give him credit where it's due

520

:

for everything that he did.

521

:

We also have a fantastic exhibit

on Lake Superior shipwrecks and

522

:

Marquette shipwrecks with maps and

details about different ships that

523

:

have gone down and some that are still

out there that they haven't found.

524

:

And ones that they have found

including some ship models all kinds of

525

:

different things that you can look at.

526

:

Cliff Duvernois: It's interesting you

say that because I want to say that I

527

:

read somewhere that the Great Lakes has

got the greatest number of shipwrecks.

528

:

Hilary Billman: Yes so the,

They actually don't even know

529

:

how many shipwrecks there are.

530

:

There may be in, in Lake Superior,

there may be 600 that they know

531

:

about and know, and just because

there's a shipwreck doesn't mean

532

:

that there's still something to find.

533

:

There could be a shipwreck and

then they recovered the ship.

534

:

But a lot of times there are still

ships at the bottom of the lake.

535

:

Like we have an exhibit on the Henry B.

536

:

Smith, which is a ship

that was lost in:

537

:

And it took them 100 years to find it

because it was 500 feet down in a place

538

:

where they weren't expecting to look.

539

:

I mean, it's a big lake.

540

:

Lots of different depth changes.

541

:

And so there are places in the lake

where there are lots of rock shoals,

542

:

and all kinds of things going on,

and there's shipwrecks everywhere.

543

:

Cliff Duvernois: Hilary, if somebody

is listening to this and they want

544

:

to come and check out the museum,

they're coming to Marquette to visit,

545

:

Hilary Billman: live

546

:

Yeah.

547

:

Um.

548

:

Cliff Duvernois: how can they find you?

549

:

Where can they go?

550

:

Hilary Billman: We have a

pretty prominent Facebook page.

551

:

If you look up Marquette Maritime Museum.

552

:

We also have a website, mqtmaritimemuseum.

553

:

com, which has got basically

everything you need to know.

554

:

There's a plan your visit page on

there that where you can figure

555

:

out ticket prices and everything.

556

:

But we are open from

mid May to mid October.

557

:

So we are seasonal because

of the weather in Marquette.

558

:

And we are closed Mondays.

559

:

But that doesn't mean

we're not busy on Mondays.

560

:

Usually on Mondays we're doing

like kids art history workshops

561

:

or something like that.

562

:

But we do have a calendar of events.

563

:

It's on our website and

on our Facebook page.

564

:

We have all kinds of things going

on in the summer still to come.

565

:

We do evening lighthouse tours.

566

:

We do sunrise tours.

567

:

We have a paranormal team that

does lighthouse paranormal tours.

568

:

And you can actually do

paranormal investigations.

569

:

It's a great group that has

been doing that for us as

570

:

fundraisers for a few years.

571

:

And it's, it's really fun.

572

:

In the winter months, if you happen

to be visiting Marquette in the winter

573

:

months, we do a series called Maritime

History on Tap at one of the local brew

574

:

pubs, the Ore Dock Brewing Company.

575

:

So once a month you can come and get a

beer and listen to some maritime history.

576

:

Usually some kind of slideshow

or presentation or a musical

577

:

Cliff Duvernois: musical.

578

:

That is

579

:

Hilary Billman: fun.

580

:

Yeah.

581

:

So it's a way to stay

involved in the winter.

582

:

Keep our name out there.

583

:

It's fun.

584

:

Cliff Duvernois: excellent.

585

:

Uh, Hilary, so much for taking time

out of your schedule to chat with

586

:

us today really do appreciate it

587

:

Hilary Billman: I love

talking about this museum.

588

:

It's a great place.

589

:

Cliff Duvernois: And for our audience You

can always roll on over to Total Michigan.

590

:

com click on Hilary's interview And get

the links that she mentioned earlier.

591

:

We'll see you next time when we

talk to another michigander doing

592

:

some pretty extraordinary things.

593

:

We'll see you then

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