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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Mackinaw City in Cheboygan County, Michigan — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

Mackinac and the Water Highway

Mackinaw City Historical Pathway

 
 
Mackinac and the Water Highway marker image. Click for full size.
By Joel Seewald, August 19, 2019
1. Mackinac and the Water Highway marker
Inscription.  
The strategic importance of the Great Lakes during the fur trade made Michilimackinac a well-known name throughout the world by all the superpowers of the time. Before trains and cars were invented, people of the Great Lakes traveled on the water. The waterways were the transportation highways and the Straits of Mackinac, centrally located between Lakes Huron, Michigan and Superior, was a convenient gathering place — not unlike today's highway rest stop.

Indians in birch bark canoes, fur traders in tall-masted ships and tourists on board coal-powered steam boats plied these waters for subsistence, commerce and recreation. For centuries Native People traveled here to fish during the summer. Indians also used the narrow Straits as a bridge to cross from the Michigan peninsula when traveling to Wisconsin, the Upper Peninsula and Ontario. For nearly two hundred years the Straits of Mackinac was the western hub of the upper Great Lakes fur trade connecting the fur-bearing regions of the west with the commercial centers of the east coast. After the Civil War, passenger boats loaded with summer vacationers steamed north through
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these waters bringing summer vacationers and health-seekers to the northern Michigan resorts, especially famed Mackinac Island. (Marker Number 17.)
 
Location. 45° 46.986′ N, 84° 43.391′ W. Marker is in Mackinaw City, Michigan, in Cheboygan County. Marker can be reached from North Huron Avenue north of East Etherington Street, on the right when traveling north. Marker is in Wawatam Park near the small parking lot and water tower. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 300 North Huron Avenue, Mackinaw City MI 49701, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Historic Timeline (a few steps from this marker); Mackinaw Boat - Mackinaw Coat (within shouting distance of this marker); Lake Level Research on the Great Lakes (within shouting distance of this marker); John L. (Jack) Staffan Chief Wawatam (within shouting distance of this marker); Chief Wawatam (within shouting distance of this marker); Island-Hopping the Straits (within shouting distance of this marker); Mackinaw's First Business District (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Mackinac Island Passenger Ferries (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Mackinaw City.
 
Categories. Industry & CommerceWaterways & Vessels
 

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Credits. This page was last revised on October 10, 2019. This page originally submitted on October 8, 2019, by Joel Seewald of Madison Heights, Michigan. This page has been viewed 50 times since then and 5 times this year. Photo   1. submitted on October 8, 2019, by Joel Seewald of Madison Heights, Michigan. • Mark Hilton was the editor who published this page.
 
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