Toivola, Michigan
Toivola is an unincorporated community in Houghton County
Houghton County, Michigan
-National protected areas:* Keweenaw National Historical Park * Ottawa National Forest -Demographics:As of the census of 2000, there were 36,016 people, 13,793 households, and 8,137 families residing in the county. The population density was 36 people per square mile . There were 17,748 housing...

, Michigan
Michigan is a U.S. state located in the Great Lakes Region of the United States of America. The name Michigan is the French form of the Ojibwa word mishigamaa, meaning "large water" or "large lake"....

, United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

. The far-flung rural community is divided between Stanton Township, Adams Township
Adams Township, Houghton County, Michigan
Adams Township is a civil township of Houghton County in the U.S. state of Michigan. As of the 2000 census, the township population was 2,747.-Communities:...

, and Bohemia Township. It is found along M-26
M-26 (Michigan highway)
M-26 is a state trunkline highway in the U.S. state of Michigan, running from two miles east of Rockland to its junction with US Highway 41 in Copper Harbor. It generally runs southwest-to-northeast in the western half or Michigan's Upper Peninsula...

, 8 miles (12.9 km) southwest of South Range
South Range, Michigan
South Range is a village in Adams Township, Houghton County in the U.S. state of Michigan. It is bordered on the east by the unincorporated community of Baltic. It is about five miles southwest of Houghton on M-26. The population was 727 at the 2000 census...

. Toivola has a post office
Post office
A post office is a facility forming part of a postal system for the posting, receipt, sorting, handling, transmission or delivery of mail.Post offices offer mail-related services such as post office boxes, postage and packaging supplies...

 with ZIP code
ZIP Code
ZIP codes are a system of postal codes used by the United States Postal Service since 1963. The term ZIP, an acronym for Zone Improvement Plan, is properly written in capital letters and was chosen to suggest that the mail travels more efficiently, and therefore more quickly, when senders use the...



Local lore claims a group of Misery Indians, a branch of the Chippewa or Ojibway tribe, settled on the southern shore of Lake Superior in the area in 1845. Toivola was settled by Finns in 1892; they named the community after the Finnish term for the vale of hope, though it is translated as "Community of Hope" on the sign erected by the Michigan Department of Highways commemorating the town's centennial in 1992. Many of the original Finnish settlers came to the United States fleeing the terrible conditions brought on by the Great Famine in the 1860s. In the town's heyday, the population was large enough to support thirteen small schools, including the Heikkinen School and Misery Bay School.
The community was originally a logging
Logging is the cutting, skidding, on-site processing, and loading of trees or logs onto trucks.In forestry, the term logging is sometimes used in a narrow sense concerning the logistics of moving wood from the stump to somewhere outside the forest, usually a sawmill or a lumber yard...

 camp. Toivola once had a station on the Copper Range Railroad
Copper Range Railroad
The Copper Range Railroad was a small railroad company that operated from 1899 to 1972 in the western Upper Peninsula of the state of Michigan, United States....

. Toivola's post office opened on January 19, 1905; Earl N. Drake was its first postmaster.


  • Misery Bay and Agate Beach - Public beaches on Lake Superior's southern shoreline. Perfect for swimming, camping, and rock hunting (fossils and agates).
  • Nature Activities - Hunting, fishing, cross-country skiing, snowmobiling, and snow shoeing.
  • Juhannus - Traditional Finnish celebration of the Summer Solstice. Bonfire or kokko burned on the sands of Agate Beach. Usually accompanied by music, dancing, and food.
  • Artesian well - Cold, fresh water which runs from the pipe found by the old Misery Bay School on Misery Bay Road can be sampled by any passerbys who thirst.

Local Celebrities

  • Sanford Mattila - Native son, also known as Sisu the Clown.
  • Dick Storm - Veteran newscaster and radio personality.
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