LANSING, Mich. – State Sen. Tom Casperson, R-Escanaba, celebrated an Upper Peninsula icon — the pasty — with Senate colleagues on Wednesday. Casperson treated senators and staff to pasties from Escanaba-based Dobbers Pasties in honor of Pasty Day, which was Sunday, Dec. 6. Casperson (far right) is pictured with, from left, Lt. Gov. Brian Calley and Sens. Jim Stamas, R-Midland, and Ken Horn, R-Frankenmuth.
Pasties have been an Upper Peninsula staple for nearly as long as Michigan has been a state. During the 19th century, Cornish immigrants brought the pasty to the iron mines of the U.P. In addition to being nutritious, pasties are convenient — workers, whose hands were soiled from the mines, could easily grip the pasty crust as a handle, eat, and get on with their work.
After the Mackinac Bridge opened, the pasty made its way down state, going from a local, mostly made-at-home meal in the U.P., to a commercial dish.