Pump House Museum (Holland)

Name of Historic Site:  Pump House Museum.

Erected in 1901 as an Edison Electric Power Plant, the building generated electricity with a boiler and two steam-powered dynamos to provide lighting for the hotel and grounds which had been expanded and improved that year. Additionally, neighborhood cottage owners were able to purchase power from the hotel. The electric lighting plant remained in service even after 1915 when the Muskegon Power Company brought power to Ottawa Beach. After the hotel burned in 1923, the boiler was removed from the building and a water pump was relocated inside the building to supply water for the area cottages. Consumers Power and later the Service Machine Company served as the local utility. In this capacity, the building became known as the “Pump House.” The equipment remained operational until 1988 when municipal water came to Ottawa Beach. Over the next two decades the building fell into disrepair. Eventually, the building came under the ownership of Ottawa County.

In 2008, HOBS began discussions with the Ottawa County Parks & Recreation (OCPR) to convert the Pump House into a museum. Over the next several years, the two groups developed conceptual plans for the museum to preserve area history, present educational programs and enrich the Ottawa Beach experience for residents and visitors alike. Ottawa County retained the services of Cornerstone Architects to study the building and develop renovation plans. HOBS began working with Holland-based museum exhibit design firm Lafferty van Heest and Associates to develop concepts for the museum.

The museum is now an important central feature of the Historic Ottawa Beach Park’s “Black Lake Boardwalk” that links the Mt. Pisgah Dune Stairs, to the Holland Harbor Fishing access, to the Lake Michigan Beach, accessible through the Holland State Park.  The location has a tremendous base of visitors to the museum. Holland State Park drew over 1.9 million visitors in 2011. The Pump House Museum is a prime cultural attraction among all the natural attractions in the area.

Address:  2282 Ottawa Beach Road, Holland MI, 49424

For information on times and admission costs, see https://www.historicottawabeachsociety.org/pumphouse-museum/