Michilimackinac is derived from an Odawa name for present-day Mackinac Island and the region around the Straits of Mackinac between Lake Huron and Lake Michigan.[1] Early settlers of North America applied the term to the entire region along Lakes Huron, Michigan, and Superior.[2] Today it is considered to be mostly within the boundaries of Michigan, in the United States. Michilimackinac was the original name for present day Mackinac Island and Mackinac County.


Straits of Mackinac crx
Overhead view of the Straits of Mackinac linking Lakes Michigan (left) and Huron (right)

The area around the Great Lakes had been occupied by succeeding cultures of indigenous peoples. At the time of European contact, the Native American nations of the Ojibwa (called Chippewa in the United States), along with Odawa, inhabited the area. The French were the first Europeans to explore the area, beginning in 1612.[3] They established trading posts and Jesuit Catholic missions.

One of the oldest missions, St. Ignace Mission, was located on the north side of the strait at Point Iroquois, near present-day St. Ignace, Michigan. This mission was established in 1671 by the Jesuit Father Jacques Marquette. The area was already known to the Odawa as Michilimackinac, meaning "Big Turtle".[4] Later, it was called "Old Michilimackinac" or "Ancient Fort Mackinac".[3]

The French later established a fort and settlement on the south side of the strait. It was called Fort Michilimackinac. The fort became a major trading post, attracting Native Americans from throughout the northern Great Lakes. After Great Britain defeated France in the Seven Years' War (French and Indian War), their colonial forces took over the fort and territory.[5]

Fort Michilimackinac fell to an Ojibwa attack during the Native American uprising of 1763, sometimes called Pontiac's War.[5] It was reoccupied by the British in September 1764. In 1780, during the American Revolution, British commandant Patrick Sinclair moved the British trading and military post to Mackinac Island, which was held by the British for some time, and abandoned Fort Michilimackinac after the move. After the rebel Americans gained independence in the Revolutionary War, this site became part of a territory of the United States.

Today, Fort Michilimackinac is preserved as a tourist site. Re-enactors portray historic activities of the French and English. An archeological dig at the site is open for viewing.

Political control of the Michilimackinac area

Term start Term end Commander Name Picture Forts and missions in the Michilimackinac area Missionaries, explorers, and tribal leaders in the Michilimackinac area Regional Governor (dates)
1671 1683 New France did not have a post yet. St. Ignace Mission Jacques Marquette (1671–1675), Louis Jolliet (1673–1674), Father Henri Nouvel, "superior of the Otawa mission" (1672–1680 with a two-year break in 1678-1679, and again from 1688 to 1695.) Governor General of New France -- Daniel de Rémy de Courcelle (1665–1672), Louis de Buade de Frontenac (1672–1682), Joseph-Antoine de La Barre (1682–1685)
1683 1690 Olivier Morel de La Durantaye St. Ignace Mission Father Henri Nouvel "superior of the Otawa mission" Joseph-Antoine de La Barre (1682–1685), Jacques-René de Brisay de Denonville, Marquis de Denonville (1685-1689)
1690? 1691? François de la Forêt (Tonty 2nd in command)[6] St. Ignace Mission Father Henri Nouvel "superior of the Otawa mission" Jacques-René de Brisay de Denonville, Marquis de Denonville (1685-1689)
1691? 1694 Louis de La Porte de Louvigné Fort de Buade and St. Ignace Mission Nicolas Perrot (1690–???) Louis de Buade de Frontenac (second term) (1689–1698)
1694 1696 Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac Fort de Buade and St. Ignace Mission (abandoned by 1705) Étienne de Carheil 1686–1702 Louis de Buade de Frontenac (second term) (1689–1698)
1696 1714 (Post abandoned by New France in favor of Detroit) St. Ignace Mission Father Étienne de Carheil 1686–1702. Kondiaronk "Le Rat" / Chief of the Hurons. Father Joseph Marest (1700–1714) Louis-Hector de Callière (1698–1703) Philippe de Rigaud Vaudreuil (1703 to 1725)
1715 Constant le Marchand de Lignery Fort Michilimackinac Philippe de Rigaud Vaudreuil (1703–1725)
1722 1725 Constant le Marchand de Lignery Fort Michilimackinac Philippe de Rigaud Vaudreuil (1703–1725), Charles le Moyne de Longueuil, Baron de Longueuil (acting governor 1726)
1729 ??? Jacques-Charles Renaud Dubuisson Fort Michilimackinac Charles de la Boische, Marquis de Beauharnois (1725–1747)
1730 1733 Jacques Testard de Montigny Fort Michilimackinac Charles de la Boische, Marquis de Beauharnois (1725–1747)
1738 1742 Pierre Joseph Céloron de Blainville [7][8] Fort Michilimackinac Charles de la Boische, Marquis de Beauharnois (1725–1747)
1744 1744 Monsier de Vivchevet [9] [10] Fort Michilimackinac Charles de la Boische, Marquis de Beauharnois (1725–1747)
1745 1745 Louis de la Corne, Chevalier de la Corne[11] Fort Michilimackinac Charles de la Boische, Marquis de Beauharnois (1725–1747)
1745 1747 Nicolas-Joseph de Noyelles de Fleurimont [9] [12] Fort Michilimackinac Charles de la Boische, Marquis de Beauharnois (1725–1747)
1748 1750 Jacques Legardeur de Saint-Pierre[13] [14] Fort Michilimackinac Roland-Michel Barrin de La Galissonière (1747–1749)
1750 1750 Monsieuer Duplessis Faber [9] Fort Michilimackinac Jacques-Pierre de Taffanel de la Jonquière, Marquis de la Jonquière (1749–1752)
1753 1753 Louis Liénard de Beaujeu de Villemonde [9] Fort Michilimackinac Michel-Ange Duquesne de Menneville (1752–1755)
1754 1754 Monsieur Herbin Fort Michilimackinac Michel-Ange Duquesne de Menneville (1752–1755)


  1. ^ Blackbird (1887), pp. 19–20.
  2. ^ Strang (2005), p. 1.
  3. ^ a b Strang (2005), p. 3.
  4. ^ Nichols, John D.; Nyholm, Earl (1995). A Concise Dictionary of Minnesota Ojibwe. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
  5. ^ a b White (2010), p. 287.
  6. ^ Clarence Monroe Burton; William Stocking; Gordon K. Miller (1922). The city of Detroit, Michigan, 1701-1922. The S. J. Clarke publishing company. pp. 103–.
  7. ^ Kelton (1889) pp.2–
  8. ^ http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/celoron_de_blainville_pierre_joseph_3E.html "in 1738 captain. He received the latter rank a few months after his appointment to the command at Michilimackinac. ... he was awarded the cross of Saint-Louis in 1741. The following year he was transferred from Michilimackinac to command at Detroit."
  9. ^ a b c d Kelton (1889) pp106-108
  10. ^ https://books.google.com/books?id=N1AVAAAAYAAJ&lpg=PA150&ots=JAifvw3qc9&dq=DUPLESSIS%20FABER%20%20Michilimackinac&pg=PA150#v=onepage&q=DUPLESSIS%20FABER%20%20Michilimackinac&f=false "Mackinac: Formerly Michilimackinac" By John Read Bailey p150
  11. ^ http://www.mifamilyhistory.org/mimack/military/EarlyMilitary/officerindex.asp?MackinacMilitaryOfficersPage=1
  12. ^ http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/noyelles_de_fleurimont_nicolas_joseph_de_3E.html "When in 1744 Pierre Gaultier de Varennes et de La Vérendrye, uncle of Mme de Noyelles, lost the privilege to exploit the fur trade while exploring a route to the western sea, the governor granted it to Noyelles. The latter too soon learned with his associates the hindrances to trade: warfare between the far western tribes and the Sioux, scarcity and high cost of trade goods during the War of the Austrian Succession, and high overhead in transporting furs and merchandise over long distances. He concluded that further search for the western sea was futile. In 1746 Noyelles submitted his resignation; it was accepted the following year by the minister, who was convinced that Noyelles had neglected exploration for trade even more single-mindedly than his predecessor. Noyelles had returned to Quebec in 1747"
  13. ^ http://www.mifamilyhistory.org/mimack/military/EarlyMilitary/officerindex.asp?MackinacMilitaryOfficersPage=1
  14. ^ http://users.usinternet.com/dfnels/legarde-zip.htm "In 1747 he became the Commander of Fort Michilimackinac & involved in the Second Sioux Company until 1749. His next command was"


  • Blackbird, Andrew J. (1887). "Earliest Possible Known History of Mackinac Island". History of the Ottawa and Chippewa Indians of Michigan. Ypsilanti, MI: Ypsilanti Auxiliary of the Woman's National Indian Association.
  • Kelton, Dwight H. (1889). Annals of Fort Mackinac. Detroit Free Press Printing Co. Retrieved 1 September 2017.
  • Strang, James Jesse (2005) [1854]. Ancient and Modern Michilimackinac, Including an Account of the Controversy Between Mackinac and the Mormons. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Library. Retrieved June 11, 2006.
  • White, Richard (2010). The Middle Ground: Indians, Empires, and Republics in the Great Lakes Region, 1650–1815 (Anniversary ed.). New York: Cambridge University Press.

Further reading

External links

Alexander Henry the elder

Alexander Henry 'The Elder' (August 1739 – 4 April 1824) was one of the leading pioneers of the British-Canadian fur trade following the British Conquest of New France; a partner in the North West Company, and a founding member and vice-chairman of the Beaver Club. In 1763–64, he lived and hunted with Wawatam of the Ojibwa, who had adopted him as a brother."Blessed with as many lives as a cat," he recounted his time with the Ojibwa and subsequent explorations in his Travels and Adventures in Canada and the Indian Territories between the years 1760 and 1776 (published New York, 1809), which he dedicated to his friend Sir Joseph Banks. The book is considered an adventure classic and one of the best descriptions of Native Indian life at this time.

An "easy and dignified" raconteur, in 1776 Henry was invited to give an account of his journeys at the Royal Society in London and at Versailles to Queen Marie Antoinette. In the 1780s, Henry introduced John Jacob Astor into the Canadian fur trade; subsequently Astor would stay as Henry's guest during his annual visits to Montreal.

Constant le Marchand de Lignery

Constant le Marchand de Lignery, generally known as Lignery (baptized March 27, 1662 in Charentilly, near Tours, France – February 19, 1732 in Trois-Rivières, New France) was a French military officer in New France (Canada). He was twice commandant at Michilimackinac.

Council of Three Fires

The Council of Three Fires (in Anishinaabe: Niswi-mishkodewinan) are also known as the People of the Three Fires; the Three Fires Confederacy; or the United Nations of Chippewa, Ottawa, and Potawatomi Indians. The council is a long-standing Anishinaabe alliance of the Ojibwe (or Chippewa), Ottawa (or Odawa), and Potawatomi North American Native tribes.

Fort Michilimackinac

Fort Michilimackinac was an 18th-century French, and later British, fort and trading post at the Straits of Mackinac; it was built on the northern tip of the lower peninsula of the present-day state of Michigan in the United States. Built around 1715, and abandoned in 1783, it was located along the Straits, which connect Lake Huron and Lake Michigan of the Great Lakes of North America. Present-day Mackinaw City developed around the site of the fort, which has been designated as a National Historic Landmark. It is preserved as an open-air historical museum, with several reconstructed wooden buildings and palisade.

Fort Michilimackinac State Park

Fort Michilimackinac State Park is a state park in the U.S. state of Michigan. It is located in Mackinaw City along the Straits of Mackinac. The park contains Fort Michilimackinac, which itself is dedicated a National Historic Landmark.

Fort St. Joseph (Ontario)

Fort St. Joseph is a former British outpost on the southernmost point of St. Joseph Island in Ontario, Canada, on Lake Huron. The fort consisted of a blockhouse, powder magazine, bakery building, Indian council house and storehouse surrounded by a palisade. Situated on approximately 325 hectares along the St. Mary's River, Fort St. Joseph was the staging ground for the initial attack in the War of 1812. The fort was not only an important military outpost, but also a significant meeting place for trade and commerce in the region. During its short but illustrious occupation, it was the British Empire's most westerly outpost. Today, Fort St. Joseph is operated by Parks Canada and is designated a National Historic Site of Canada.

Fort de Buade

Fort de Buade was a French fort in the present U.S. state of Michigan's Upper Peninsula across the Straits of Mackinac from the northern tip of lower Michigan's "mitten". It was garrisoned between 1683 and 1701. The city of St. Ignace developed at the site, which also had the historic St. Ignace Mission founded by Jesuits. The fort was named after New France's governor at the time, Louis de Buade de Frontenac.


Kondiaronk (c. 1649–1701) (Gaspar Soiaga, Souojas, Sastaretsi), known as Le Rat (The Muskrat) was Chief of the Hurons at Michilimackinac. As a result of an Iroquois attack and dispersal of the Hurons in 1649 the Hurons settled in Michilimackinac. The Michilimackinac area is near Lake Huron and Lake Michigan (area between Michigan's Upper and Lower Peninsulas). Noted as a brilliant orator and a formidable strategist, he led the pro-French Petun and Huron refugees of Michilimackinac against their traditional Iroquois enemies. Kondiaronk realized the only way to establish security was to maintain a war between their enemies, the Iroquois, and the French in an attempt to keep the Iroquois occupied and the Hurons safe from annihilation. The Rat succeeded in killing the peace however, once he had secured the preservation of his people he favored a vast peace settlement. This effort concluded in what is known as The Great Peace of Montreal (1701) between France, the Iroquois, and the other Indian tribes of the Upper Great Lakes. This ended the Beaver Wars and helped open up the interior of North America to deeper French exploration and commerce. Kondiaronk made them see the advantages such a peace would bring them. The Jesuit historian, Father Pierre-Francois de Charlevoix wrote that "it was the general opinion that no Indian had ever possessed greater merit, a finer mind, more valor, prudence or discernment in understanding those with whom he had to deal". Louis-Hector de Callier, the Onontio (governor) that replaced Frontenac, was "exclusively indebted to him for...this assemblage, till then unexampled of so many nations for a general peace". Kondiaronk contracted a fever and died in Montreal during the negotiations for the Great Peace on August 2, 1701. A Christian convert, his body was buried at Montreal's Notre Dame Church after a majestic funeral. No trace of the grave remains. The Kondiaronk Belvedere in Montreal's Mount Royal Park is named in his honor. In 2001 he was named a Person of National Historic Significance by the Canadian government.

List of Michigan state parks

This is a list of Michigan state parks and related protected areas under Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) jurisdiction. The DNR Parks and Recreation Division manages these lands. DNR administers over 100 state parks and also operates 16 state harbors on the Great Lakes. Michigan's 103 state park and recreation areas cover 306,000 acres (124,000 ha) with 14,100 campsites in 142 campgrounds and over 900 miles (1,400 km) of trails. The state parks and recreation areas statewide collectively saw more than 26 million visits in 2016.Michigan's state parks system was started in 1919. Two Michigan state parks pre-date the creation of the park system in 1919: Interlochen State Park and Mackinac Island State Park.

Mackinac Island State Park was created in 1895. It had served as the nation's second national park from 1875. In 1909 Michilimackinac State Park was created in nearby Mackinaw City. Both of these parks, along with Historic Mill Creek State Park are under the jurisdiction of the Mackinac Island State Park Commission.

Interlochen State Park was purchased by the Michigan Legislature in 1917 and was the first public park to be transferred to the Michigan State Park Commission in 1920. Because Mackinac Island State Park was a federal gift with its own commission and jurisdiction it is not technically the first state park even though it predates Interlochen State Park by nearly 25 years.DNR operates 746 boat launches on 57,000 acres (230 km2) of designated public water access sites. It also operates 16 "harbors of refuge" as well as providing support for the other 61 harbors in the system. The harbors of refuge are approximately 30 miles (50 km) apart along the Great Lakes shoreline to provide shelter from storms and often provide boat launches and supplies. There are 11 state underwater preserves covering 2,450 square miles (6,300 km2) of Great Lakes bottomland and ten of them have a maritime museum or interpretive center in a nearby coastal community.The DNR Parks and Recreation Division also manages 138 state forest campgrounds (including a dozen equestrian campgrounds). The Michigan state game and wildlife areas encompass more than 340,000 acres (1,400 km2). DNR also oversees the trail systems in the state. This includes 880 miles (1,400 km) of non-motorized trails, 1,145 miles (1,800 km) of rail-trails, 3,193 miles (5,100 km) of off-road vehicle (ORV) routes and 6,216 miles (10,000 km) of snowmobile trails.For a discussion of all protected areas in Michigan under all jurisdictions, see Protected areas of Michigan.

List of National Historic Landmarks in Michigan

The National Historic Landmarks in Michigan represent Michigan's history from pre-colonial days through World War II, and encompasses several landmarks detailing the state's automotive, maritime and mining industries. There are 42 National Historic Landmarks (NHL) in the state, located in 17 of its 83 counties. The landmarks also cover sites of military significance, such as Fort Michilimackinac, religious significance, such as the St. Ignace Mission, and cultural significance, such as the Fox Theater and Ernest Hemingway's boyhood summer cottage. In addition, two previously designated landmarks have lost that status due to the demolition of the sites.The National Historic Landmark Program is administered by the National Park Service, a branch of the Department of the Interior. The National Park Service determines which properties meet NHL criteria and makes nomination recommendations after an owner notification process. The Secretary of the Interior reviews nominations and, based on a set of predetermined criteria, makes a decision on NHL designation or a determination of eligibility for designation. Both public and privately owned properties can be designated as NHLs. This designation provides indirect, partial protection of the historic integrity of the properties via tax incentives, grants, monitoring of threats, and other means. Owners may object to the nomination of the property as a NHL. When this is the case the Secretary of the Interior can only designate a site as eligible for designation.All NHLs are also included on the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP), a list of historic properties that the National Park Service deems to be worthy of preservation. The NHLs in Michigan comprise approximately 2% of the 1,757 properties and districts listed on the National Register of Historic Places in Michigan as of January 2012. The primary difference between a NHL and a NRHP listing is that the NHLs are determined to have national significance, while other NRHP properties are deemed significant at the local or state level.Wayne County, the location of the automotive capital Detroit, has the most NHLs, with 13, followed by Emmet County and Mackinac County with three each. Five counties have two each, and seven counties each have one listing. Michigan's first NHLs were designated on October 9, 1960, when three locations were chosen. The latest designation was made on October 31, 2016. Ten Historic Landmarks in Michigan are more specifically designated National Historic Landmark Districts, meaning that they cover a large area rather than a single building.


Lybster (Scottish Gaelic: Liabost) is a village on the east coast of Caithness in northern Scotland.

It was once a big herring fishing port, but has declined in recent years, due to problems in the industry.

It hosts the "World Championships of Knotty"; knotty or cnatag is a variant of shinty.

The film, The Silver Darlings, from Neil Gunn's book, was shot here.

The Sinclairs of Lybster have long roots running back to the Sinclair earls who ruled Caithness that was once a much larger area taking in much of Sutherland. Tracing further back the family has connections to the Norwegian earls who controlled the north of Scotland for centuries.

Lybster railway station was part of the Wick and Lybster Railway. It opened on 1 July 1903 and closed on 3 April 1944.

Lybster's sister city is Mackinac Island, U.S.A.

Mackinac County, Michigan

Mackinac County is a county in the Upper Peninsula of the U.S. state of Michigan. As of the 2010 census, the population was 11,113. The county seat is St. Ignace. Formerly known as Michilimackinac County, in 1818 it was one of the first counties of the Michigan Territory, as it had long been a center of French and British colonial fur trading, a Catholic church and Protestant mission, and associated settlement.The county's name is believed to be shortened from "Michilimackinac", which referred to the Straits of Mackinac area as well as the French settlement at the tip of the lower peninsula.

Mackinac Island, Michigan

Mackinac Island ( MAK-in-aw) is a city in Mackinac County in the U.S. state of Michigan. In the 2010 census, the city had a permanent population of 492, although there are thousands of seasonal workers and tourists during the summer months.

An important fur trading center from the eighteenth century, with a predominately French-speaking population of French Canadians and Métis, after the War of 1812, it gained more Anglo-American residents. From 1818 until 1882 the city was the county seat of the former Michilimackinac County, which was later organized as Mackinac County with St. Ignace designated as the county seat. The city includes all of Mackinac Island and the unpopulated Round Island, which is federally owned and part of Hiawatha National Forest. The city limits include all of Mackinac Island State Park, which area makes up 80% of Mackinac Island; it is governed by the Mackinac Island State Park Commission. The city is served by the Mackinac Island Public School.

A unique local ordinance prohibits the use of any motor vehicles on the island. The most common means of travel are foot, bicycle, or horseback. Certain enumerated exceptions include emergency vehicles, electric wheelchairs for those with disabilities, snowmobiles in winter, and golf carts for on-course use only. Mackinac Island is home to the famed Grand Hotel. The 1980 movie Somewhere in Time was filmed here, and the city made an exception to allow the production company to use motorized vehicles on the island.

Mackinac Island is also noted for its many fudge shops on the island. The island has a very large industry making fudge in a traditional manner, creating large portions on cold marble slabs. The many varieties are a tourist draw and common gift throughout Michigan.

Mackinac Island State Park Commission

The Mackinac Island State Park Commission is an appointed board of the State of Michigan that administers state parklands in the Straits of Mackinac area. It performs public activities under the name Mackinac State Historic Parks. Park units include Mackinac Island State Park including Fort Mackinac and certain properties within the historic downtown of Mackinac Island, Michigan; Colonial Michilimackinac including Fort Michilimackinac and Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse; and Historic Mill Creek Discovery Park. It is assigned to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.

Mackinac State Historic Parks is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums. Over one million artifacts are in the collection. which are overseen by a professional curatorial staff. Archeological digs are conducted, and educational opportunities, including lesson plans, are available. The commission maintains the official Michigan Governor's Summer Residence on Mackinac Island and distributes photographs, media kits, brochures and other promotional material.On July 15, 2009, the Park celebrated its 20 millionth visitor.

Mackinaw City, Michigan

Mackinaw City () is a village in Emmet and Cheboygan counties in the U.S. state of Michigan. The population was 806 at the 2010 census; the population surges during the summer tourist season, including an influx of tourists and seasonal workers who serve in the shops, hotels and other recreational facilities there and in the surrounding region. Mackinaw City is at the northern tip (headland) of the Michigan's Lower Peninsula along the southern shore of the Straits of Mackinac. Across the straits lies the state's Upper Peninsula. These two land masses are physically connected by the Mackinac Bridge, which runs from Mackinaw City north to St. Ignace. Mackinaw City is also the primary base for ferry service to Mackinac Island, located to the northeast in the straits.

According to AAA's 2009 TripTik requests, Mackinaw City is the most popular tourist city in the state of Michigan. Local attractions include Fort Michilimackinac, the Mackinac Bridge, the Mackinaw Crossings shopping mall, Mill Creek, the Old Mackinac Point Light, the Historic Village, the McGulpin Point Light, and the retired US Coast Guard Icebreaker Mackinaw.

The official name of the community is "The Village of Mackinaw City" and as that suggests, it is a village by state law. Mackinaw City is governed by the General Law Village Act, Public Act No. 3, of 1895, as amended. The downtown district and much of the development lie within Mackinaw Township, Cheboygan County, but the larger portion of the village by area is in Wawatam Township, Emmet County, which borders Mackinaw Township to the west.

Northern Michigan

Northern Michigan, also known as Northern Lower Michigan or Upper Michigan (known colloquially to residents of more southerly parts of the state and summer residents from cities such as Chicago as "up north"), is a region of the U.S. state of Michigan. A popular tourist destination, it is home to several small- to medium-sized cities, extensive state and national forests, lakes and rivers, and a large portion of Great Lakes shoreline. The region has a significant seasonal population much like other regions that depend on tourism as their main industry. Northern Lower Michigan is distinct from the more northerly Upper Peninsula and Isle Royale, which, obviously, are also located in "northern" Michigan. In the northern-most 21 counties in the Lower Peninsula of Michigan, the total population of the region is 506,658 people.

Sainte Anne Church (Mackinac Island)

Sainte Anne Church, commonly called 'Ste. Anne Church' or 'Ste. Anne's Church', is a Roman Catholic church that serves the parish of Sainte Anne de Michilimackinac in Mackinac Island, Michigan. The Jesuit missionary Claude Dablon inaugurated the rites of the Catholic faith on Mackinac Island in 1670, but the earliest surviving parish records list sacraments performed starting in April 1695. After moving from Fort de Buade to Fort Michilimackinac about 1708 and from Fort Michilimackinac to Mackinac Island in 1781, the parish used a historic log church for decades. It constructed the current church complex starting in 1874 on a site donated by the former fur trader, Magdelaine Laframboise.

Straits of Mackinac

The Straits of Mackinac ( MAK-in-aw) are narrow waterways in the U.S. state of Michigan between Michigan's Lower and Upper Peninsulas. The main strait flows under the Mackinac Bridge and connects two of the Great Lakes, Lake Michigan and Lake Huron. The main strait is 3.5 miles (5.6 km) wide and has a maximum depth of 295 feet (90 m). Hydrologically, the two connected lakes can be considered one lake, which is called Lake Michigan–Huron. Historically, the native Odawa people called the region around the Straits Michilimackinac. The Straits of Mackinac is "whipsawed by currents unlike anywhere else in the Great Lakes".Islands forming the edge of Straits of Mackinac include the two populated islands, Bois Blanc and Mackinac, and one that is uninhabited: Round island. The Straits of Mackinac is a major shipping lane, providing passage for raw materials and finished goods and connecting, for instance, the iron mines of Minnesota to the steel mills of Gary, Indiana. Before the railroads reached Chicago from the east, most immigrants arrived in the Midwest and Great Plains by ships on the Great Lakes. The straits is five miles (8 km) wide at its narrowest point, where it is spanned by the Mackinac Bridge. Before the bridge was built, car ferries transported vehicles across the straits. Today passenger-only ferries carry people to Mackinac Island, which does not permit cars. Visitors can take their vehicles on a car ferry to Bois Blanc Island.

The straits are shallow and narrow enough to freeze over in the winter. Navigation is ensured for year-round shipping to the Lower Great Lakes by the use of icebreakers.

The straits were an important Native American and fur trade route. The Straits of Mackinac are named after Mackinac Island. The local Ojibwe Native Americans in the Straits of Mackinac region likened the shape of the island to that of a turtle, so they named the island Mitchimakinak, meaning "Big Turtle". When the British explored the area, they shortened the name to its present form: Mackinac.Located on the southern side of the straits is the town of Mackinaw City, the site of Fort Michilimackinac, a reconstructed French fort founded in 1715, and on the northern side is St. Ignace, site of a French Catholic mission to the Indians, founded in 1671. The eastern end of the straits was controlled by Fort Mackinac on Mackinac Island, a British colonial and early American military base and fur trade center, founded in 1781.

Wawatam Township, Michigan

Wawatam Township is a civil township of Emmet County in the U.S. state of Michigan. As of the 2000 census, the township population was 705.

The village of Mackinaw City is located mostly within the township.

The township is named after Wawatam, an Odawa chief noted for rescuing British trader Alexander Henry the elder from the Ojibwas' capture of Fort Michilimackinac in 1763.

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