McGulpin House Visitor Information

McGulpin House Visitor Information

Travel Information

The McGulpin House is located on Mackinac Island within the boundaries of Mackinac Island State Park, on the corner of Fort and Market Streets.

Street Address

1575 Fort Street
Mackinac Island, MI 49757

Travel Directions

Click here to map your route to the McGulpin House and for general travel information on your visit to Mackinac Island.

 

Visitor Services

Restrooms

There are no restrooms at the McGulpin House. The nearest restrooms are located at the Mackinac Island State Park Visitor’s Center.

Accessibility 

The McGulpin House has one entrance step and a 31″ doorway. Learn more about how guests with limited mobility or other special needs can fully enjoy their visit. Click here for complete information about accessibility. 

 

Visitation Tips & Courtesies

Getting Around

The McGulpin House is a small home, constructed in the 1700s, with a main room and two smaller rooms.

Touring Time

We recommend that you plan to spend a minimum of one half hour touring the site.

Pet Friendly

Well-behaved pets on leashes are welcome.

Photography

Photography is permitted and encouraged in all areas. Professional or group photography must be approved in advance.

Electronic Devices

Please silence electronic devices during audiovisual presentations and live demonstrations.

Smoking

The McGulpin House is a smoke-free site.

Buy Tickets

McGulpin House

Historic Mackinac.  

This is Mackinac.

One of the island’s oldest structures, McGulpin House dates from 1780, or possibly before. Originally located on the east end of town, the building was moved to this location during restoration in 1982. Once the home of William McGulpin, a baker for the American Fur Company, this structure is an excellent and rare example of early French Canadian domestic architecture.

Preserved as an architectural artifact, the interior is partially restored to reveal its layers of use. Exhibits tell the story of the house. There is also an interactive audiovisual program on the historic architecture of Mackinac Island.

Click to enlarge.

 

American Fur Co. Store & Dr. Beaumont Museum

Mackinac’s Medical Miracle.   

This is Mackinac.

Home to the American Fur Company Store, which sold a variety of general merchandise. It was at this site, on June 6, 1822, that French Canadian voyageur Alexis St. Martin was accidentally shot in the stomach from a distance of three feet. Fort Mackinac surgeon Dr. William Beaumont managed to keep St. Martin alive, but the hole in his stomach never properly healed. Through this hole, Dr. Beaumont conducted experiments, observed the workings of the human stomach and discovered much about the digestive process.

Highlights

Click to enlarge.

Exhibits

Brand new for 2022! As 2022 marks the 200th anniversary of the accidental shooting of St. Martin, a brand new exhibit will be installed commemorating Dr. Beaumont’s famous experiments and the scientific process, as well as the effect it had on St. Martin. In the other room, a period setting recreates the store scene where St. Martin was shot.

Live Interpretation

Every day during the operating season an interpreter is stationed at the American Fur Co. Store & Dr. Beaumont Museum to provide interpretation of the store and provide information on Dr. Beaumont and his experiments as well as the fur trade on Mackinac Island.

 

Benjamin Blacksmith Shop

Mackinac at Work.  

This is Mackinac.

Originally built in the 1880s, Robert Benjamin and later his son, Herbert, ran a blacksmith shop into the 1960s. The contents of the shop were moved to the reconstructed building in 1970. The Benjamin’s fixed carriage wheels and shoed horses in the early days and repaired lawnmowers and maintained yacht motors in later years.

Highlights

Click to enlarge.

Live Interpretation

Following in the Benjamin’s footsteps, a blacksmith demonstrates and explains traditional blacksmithing techniques like forming hot iron into fireplace tools, hinges, and household items.

Details

The Benjamin Blacksmith Shop is maintained today in a similar fashion to how it was in the 1950s, during the latter years of the Benjamin’s ownership. The blacksmith is dressed as a typical blacksmith would have dressed in the 1950s, and music of the era can be heard while they’re at work.

 

Historic Downtown Mackinac

Historic Downtown Mackinac

More of Mackinac. 

This is Mackinac.

Follow in the footsteps of the fur trade. From 1780 to about 1835 Mackinac Island was the principal summer depot and supply center for the upper Great Lakes fur trade. Pelts gathered at Mackinac were shipped to eastern United States and European markets. During the golden age of the American Fur Company, great wealth was produced on Market Street.

Historic Downtown Mackinac includes the American Fur Co. Store & Dr. Beaumont Museum and the McGulpin House, perhaps the oldest private residence in Michigan. Admission is included with a Fort Mackinac or Historic Downtown Mackinac ticket.

Buildings

Click to enlarge.

American Fur Company Store and Dr. Beaumont Museum

This building was the American Fur Company Store, selling a variety of general merchandise. It was here, on June 6, 1822, that French Canadian voyageur Alexis St. Martin was accidentally shot in the stomach from a distance of three feet. Fort Mackinac surgeon Dr. William Beaumont managed to keep St. Martin alive, but the hole in his stomach never properly healed. Through this hole, Dr. Beaumont conducted experiments, observed the workings of the human stomach and discovered much about the digestive process. Exhibits explain the fateful accident and Dr. Beaumont’s experiments and a period setting recreates the store scene where St. Martin was shot.

McGulpin House 

On the corner of Fort and Market Streets is the McGulpin House, one of the island’s oldest structures. It dates from 1780, or possibly just before, and was restored with the support of Mackinac Associates. The building was moved to its current location during restoration in 1982. Once the home of William McGulpin, a baker for the American Fur Company, this structure is an excellent and rare example of early French Canadian architecture. A historic interpreter details the architectural significance of the structure on Saturday’s during the operating season.