The Bucyrus Heritage Museum originally opened in a legacy building on the South Milwaukee campus of Bucyrus International in 2009. The display was open to the public, and documented the company’s 135+ year history as a world leader in the mining and construction equipment industry, including steam shovels used to build the Panama Canal and the world’s largest mobile land machines. Caterpillar purchased Bucyrus in 2011, and in December 2016 permanently closed the Museum.
In 2017 the South Milwaukee Industrial Museum (SMIM) was formed to archive and protect the archives assets of the former Bucyrus Heritage Museum. With volunteer help, 95% of the original display items were saved and moved into a temporary storage facility until a new location could be found.
On February 20th, 2020, it was announced that the new Museum home will be a legacy building in South Milwaukee. Built in 1892, it once served as the Bucyrus West Machine Shop and Steam Engine Assembly area. All of the steam shovel engines for the Panama Canal machines were produced in this building. In 1920, the building was remodeled and became the Bucyrus Club until its closure in 1994.
The building renovation costs are being covered by civic and Bucyrus Foundation help. Even with that, we’re still a long way from being able to open in early 2021, and your help is needed today. Your donation will help cover the costs of moving and re-establishing the electronic, interactive, static, and educational displays when the new facility is opened. We’re also in need a security system and funds to cover basic utilities and rents in 2021. We’ve applied for additional grant monies from several sources, however that will not be enough to sustain us for a full year.
Our current volunteer group of eleven Directors and Advisors do not receive any compensation for the work they do. In fact, they often use their own funds to cover current expenses for the museum. Your generous support and tax-deductible donation will help make SMIM a reality.
South Milwaukee Industrial Museum LLC has received the designation of being a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization – EIN #82-2055656, and your acknowledged donation is 100% tax deductible. Thank you in advance for your continued support!
Organizer and beneficiary
South Milwaukee, WI