Little Traverse Bay
Harbor Springs originated as L'arbre de Croche, a French Jesuit mission village to serve the Odawa people bands in the area. After the British took over the territory, the village was renamed in English. The federally recognized Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians have their headquarters here. They have land here, and additional land and a gaming casino in Petoskey.
After the Odawa bands in northern Michigan were persuaded to cede considerable lands to the United States, the Little Traverse Bay region was developed by Illinois land developers and resort founders, such as lawyers Henry Stryker, III and Henry Brigham McClure, and the Capps family of Jacksonville, Illinois and woolen mills fame. The Stryker, Capps, and McClure families were interconnected with the Jacob Bunn industrial dynasty of Chicago and Springfield, Illinois.
Little Traverse Bay is popular during the summer for boating, sailing and swimming by the numerous vacation communities on the bay, including Bay View, Wequetonsing, Bay Harbor, and Harbor Point. Many of these communities also provide sailing and swimming lessons.
The bay is the location of the annual Ugotta Regatta, hosted by the Little Traverse Yacht Club in Harbor Springs. Participants are often boat owners and crews who have sailed in the Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac and Port Huron to Mackinac Boat Race, each held on one of the two weekends before.
- Michigan Atlas and Gazetteer (10th ed.). Yarmouth, Maine: DeLorme. 2002. p. 82.
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