Presque Isle County, Michigan
Presque Isle County
Location within the U.S. state of Michigan
Michigan's location within the U.S.
|Largest city||Rogers City|
|• Total||2,573 sq mi (6,660 km2)|
|• Land||659 sq mi (1,710 km2)|
|• Water||1,914 sq mi (4,960 km2) 74%|
| • Estimate |
|• Density||20/sq mi (8/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC−5 (Eastern)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC−4 (EDT)|
Presque Isle County is a county in the Lower peninsula of the U.S. state of Michigan. As of the 2010 census, the population was 13,376. The county seat is Rogers City. The county was authorized by state legislative action on April 1, 1840, but the county government was not established until 1871. The government was reorganized in 1875.
Both the county and Presque Isle Township are named for Presque Isle (French, "almost an island"; the term for a narrow peninsula). A large part of the township consists of that peninsula, with Lake Huron on the east, Grand Lake on the west, and narrow strips of land connecting it to the mainland at the north and south ends. The community of Presque Isle is near the center of this peninsula.
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Early Native Americans living in the area were nomadic, using the land as hunting grounds. To them the land between the Ocqueoc and Swan Rivers was sacred ground. The name "Presque Isle" was given to the area by fur traders who portaged over the strip of land that attaches Presque Isle to the mainland.
Early development of the area was delayed because it had no navigable river. The Ocqueoc River was Presque Isle's largest river but it was shallow and crooked, with many rapids. In the spring of 1839 a surveying party, contracted by the state of Michigan, reported that the land of this area was worthless. This further discouraged development until the 1860s when the Crawford family settled into a quiet cove of Lake Huron, south of present-day Rogers City. They intended to develop a stone quarry, but found the stone too flaky to be used as building material. Turning to lumbering, they sold the wood to steamers traveling the Great Lakes.
In 1868 W.E. Rogers, an Army officer, organized a surveying party to Presque Isle, with Albert Molitor as supervisor. Seeing the huge forests, they attempted to purchase Crawford's Quarry but were refused. They formed the Molitor-Rogers Company purchasing the land at the site of Rogers City. The following year a large party of German and Polish immigrants arrived and settled in the area. The Molitor-Rogers Company built a sawmill, store, boarding house, and blacksmith shop. The small city was solely supplied by the company. After a difficult winter in 1870–71, the community began to thrive.
The county's original settlers were lumbermen, fishermen and farmers. In 1907 a mining engineer/geologist from New York, H.H. Hindshaw, visited Crawford's Quarry and found it to be rich in limestone. Following this discovery, the Michigan Limestone and Chemical Company of Calcite, Michigan, was founded. The company purchased 8,000 acres (32 km2) at Calcite, the new name for Crawford's Quarry. Needing a means of shipping their product, the Bradley Transportation Company was formed. The company is known in the area for being the chief business, employing a significant portion of the area's residents. One of the darker aspects of the county's history involved the Bradley Transportation Company when one of their cargo ships, the Carl D. Bradley sank on Lake Michigan during a windstorm in November 1958 with the loss of 33 lives, 29 of whom resided in Presque Isle County (26 were from Rogers City, two were from Onaway, and one was from Metz Township).
According to the US Census Bureau, the county has an area of 2,573 square miles (6,660 km2), of which 659 square miles (1,710 km2) is land and 1,914 square miles (4,960 km2) (74%) is water. Although Presque Isle County is on Michigan's Lower Peninsula, it is considered to be part of Northern Michigan.
Lakes in the County
There is one county-owned airport in Presque Isle County, providing access to general aviation:
- Presque Isle County Airport – located SW of Rogers City
|US Decennial Census|
As of the 2000 United States Census, of 2000, there were 14,411 people, 6,155 households, and 4,203 families residing in the county. The population density was 22 people per square mile (8/km2). There were 9,910 housing units at an average density of 15 per square mile (6/km2). The county's racial makeup was 98.07% White, 0.26% Black or African American, 0.59% Native American, 0.16% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.09% from other races, and 0.82% from two or more races. 0.55% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 28.5% were of German, 28.2% Polish, 7.9% English, 6.3% American, 5.6% French and 5.6% Irish ancestry. 95.7% spoke English and 3.1% Polish as their first language.
There were 6,155 households, of which 24.50% had children under age 18 living with them, 58.80% were married couples living together, 6.30% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.70% were non-families. 28.40% of all households were made up of individuals, and 14.50% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.31 and the average family size was 2.80.
The county population contained 20.90% under the age of 18, 6.50% from 18 to 24, 22.40% from 25 to 44, 27.80% from 45 to 64, and 22.30% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 45 years. For every 100 females there were 99.20 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 97.10 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $31,656, and the median income for a family was $37,426. Males had a median income of $31,275 versus $20,625 for females. The per capita income for the county was $17,363. About 6.80% of families and 10.30% of the population were below the poverty line, including 13.10% of those under age 18 and 9.20% of those over age 64.
Voters in Presque Isle County have generally favored Republican Party nominees. Since 1884, the Republican nominee has garnered the county's vote 71% of the time (24 of 34 elections).
The county government operates the jail, maintains rural roads, operates the major local courts, records deeds, mortgages, and vital records, administers public health regulations, and participates with the state in the provision of social services. The county board of commissioners controls the budget and has limited authority to make laws or ordinances. In Michigan, most local government functions – police and fire, building and zoning, tax assessment, street maintenance etc. – are the responsibility of individual cities and townships.
as of January 2013
There are ten recognized Michigan historical markers in the county:
- The Alpena News is the daily newspaper of record for much of the northeastern Lower Peninsula.
- The Presque Isle County Advance is the weekly newspaper of Presque Isle County.
The following television stations broadcast in Presque Isle County:
- Channel 4: WTOM-TV "TV 7&4" (NBC) (Cheboygan; satellite of WPBN-TV, Traverse City)
- Channel 6: WCML "CMU Public Television" (PBS) (Alpena; satellite of WCMU-TV, Mount Pleasant)
- Channel 8: WGTQ "ABC 29&8" (ABC) (Sault Ste. Marie; satellite of WGTU, Traverse City)
- Channel 10: WWUP-TV "9&10 News" (CBS) (Sault Ste. Marie; satellite of WWTV, Cadillac)
- Channel 11: WBKB-TV "Channel 11 News" (CBS) (Alpena)
- Channel 45: WFUP "Fox 32" (Fox) (Vanderbilt; satellite of WFQX-TV Cadillac).
The following radio stations can be heard in Rogers City
|Call Sign||Frequency||City Broadcast From|
|Call Sign||Frequency||City Broadcast From|
- NOAA Weather Radio
NOAA Weather Radio can be heard on 162.550 MHz (Call Sign KIG83, Alpena)
Other unincorporated communities
- List of Michigan State Historic Sites in Presque Isle County, Michigan
- National Register of Historic Places listings in Presque Isle County, Michigan
- "Bibliography on Presque Isle County". Clarke Historical Library, Central Michigan University. Retrieved January 29, 2013.
- "State & County QuickFacts". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on July 17, 2011. Retrieved August 29, 2013.
- "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
- "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". US Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Archived from the original on November 13, 2013. Retrieved September 27, 2014.
- Presque Isle County Airport airnav.com
- Alpena County Regional Airport airnav.com
- Cherry Capital Airport airnav.com
- "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved May 18, 2019.
- "US Decennial Census". US Census Bureau. Retrieved September 27, 2014.
- "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved September 27, 2014.
- "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". US Census Bureau. Retrieved September 27, 2014.
- "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). US Census Bureau. Retrieved September 27, 2014.
- "U.S. Census website". US Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
- US Election Atlas
- "Michigan Historical Markers". Archived from the original on July 17, 2014. Retrieved January 8, 2008.
- The Alpena News
-  Presque Isle County website
-  Enchanted forest, Northern Michigan source for information, calendars etc.
- "Bibliography on Presque Isle County". Clarke Historical Library, Central Michigan University.