Introduction to Houghton, Michigan

Houghton, Michigan, in Houghton county, is 168 miles E of Duluth, Minnesota (center to center) and 263 miles NE of St. Paul, Minnesota.

Houghton History

Douglas Houghton is believed to have discovered copper in Houghton which explains the city's name. However, before the European settlement, the Native Americans had also mined copper. Numerous Cornish and Finnish immigrants came to work in the copper mines, and The Michigan School of Mines was founded in 1885. The earliest European settler was Ransom Sheldon. When the Keweenaw Waterway opened in 1873, it established Houghton as an important port. The post war boom and increased demand for copper wiring led to rapid development of Houghton during the 1860s and 1870s. By 1880, Houghton had become a prosperous city in Michigan.

Houghton and Nearby Attractions

  • Coppertown USA Mining Museum Complex
  • Fort Wilkins Historic Complex
  • F.J. McLain State Park
  • Hancock Recreation Area
  • Twin Lakes State Park

Things To Do In Houghton

Fort Wilkins Historic Complex and Coppertown USA Mining Museum Complex have historical artifacts on display. The Wilkins Historic State Park, Twin Lakes State Park, and Hancock Recreation Area offers provisions for various recreational activities like hiking, fishing, and mountain biking. Golf can be played at Portage Lake Golf Course.

Houghton Transportation

Air transportation is available from Sawyer International Airport.

Houghton Higher Education

Colleges and universities located near Houghton are Northern Michigan University, North Central Technical College, University of Wisconsin, and Northeast Wisconsin Technical College.


Total Population 7,942
Male Share of the Population 59.6%
Female Share of the Population 40.4%
Senior Citizens 9.8%
Employed Population 16+ 3,387
Age of the Population 22


% of people married 25.3%
Average household size 2

Education and Earnings

Population % with Bachelor Degree or Higher 51.6%
Median Earnings25+ $25,901
Median Earnings Without High School Qualification $21,008
Median Earnings With High School Degree $20,543


Median Family Income $59,886
% Above Poverty Level 61.5%
% Below Poverty Level 38.5%

Commute & Sprawl

Average Commute Time 11 minutes
% Working from Home 3.2%
% Walking and Biking to Work 30.9%
% Using Public Transportation 2.3%


People Living Alone 28%
Median Gross Rent $689
Median House Value $127,600


Other(often includes Hispanic and African American) 17.8%
US/American 0%
English 9.1%
Irish 9.4%

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Houghton Almanac

Category Value
Nearest Medium City 168 miles E of Duluth, Minnesota (center to center)
Nearest Large City 263 miles NE of St. Paul, Minnesota
County Houghton
Standard Zip Codes 49921, 49931
Phone Area Codes 906
Time Zone Eastern (-5 hours from GMT)
Daylight Savings The city observes Daylight Saving Time.
Latitude 47.121
Longitude -88.568

Houghton Climate

Nearest Weather Stations


  • Temp ranges are avg daily min and max for the month
  • Precipitation is rainfall (and rainfall equiv of snowfall)

Distance 5.1 miles
Jan Temp 8 to 22 F
Apr Temp 30 to 47 F
Jul Temp 55 to 76 F
Oct Temp 36 to 52 F
Annual Precip 33.8 inches
Station HERMAN
Distance 33.1 miles
Jan Temp 4 to 20 F
Apr Temp 26 to 50 F
Jul Temp 52 to 77 F
Oct Temp 34 to 53 F
Annual Precip 38.2 inches
Station KENTON
Distance 46.6 miles
Jan Temp 1 to 23 F
Apr Temp 26 to 54 F
Jul Temp 52 to 79 F
Oct Temp 34 to 55 F
Annual Precip 28.4 inches

Neighborhood and Nearby Area Names

According to the US Postal Service, Houghton, its neighborhoods, and/or surrounding areas are also referred to as:

Dodgeville (49921)

Note that not all alternate names are acceptable for use in US Post Office addresses.

Nearby Cities and Towns

Location Population Median Family Income
Calumet 684 $0
Hancock 4,601 $60,526
Lake Linden 1,120 $45,000
Laurium 1,906 $50,588
South Range 858 $46,094

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Houghton Public Libraries

Portage Lake District Library
Houghton, Michigan
(906) 482-4570
Library Web Site

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Houghton High Schools

Serves 486 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 16.4

Houghton Colleges

Click school name for a detailed profile.

Additional Details
Houghton Colleges
Houghton colleges and trade schools.
Study Online in Houghton
Historic Houghton


Douglass i.e. Douglas House c1908.

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Douglass i.e. Douglas House c1908.

Michigan School of Mines c1906.

Michigan School of Mines between 1900 and 1910

Additional Resources
Info for Houghton Government Officials

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