Location of Sturgis, Michigan
|• Total||6.49 sq mi (16.81 km2)|
|• Land||6.49 sq mi (16.81 km2)|
|• Water||0 sq mi (0 km2)|
|Elevation||915 ft (279 m)|
|• Estimate (2016)||10,879|
|• Density||1,700/sq mi (650/km2)|
|Time zone||Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)|
|• Summer (DST)||EDT (UTC-4)|
|GNIS feature ID||1624965|
Sturgis is a city in St. Joseph County in the U.S. state of Michigan. The population was 10,994 at the 2010 census. The city is located at the northeast corner of Sturgis Township and at the intersection of U.S. Highway 12 (US 12) and M-66. Sturgis is just off the Michigan / Indiana border and the I-80/90 Indiana Toll Road.
- 1 Geography
- 2 Transportation
- 3 History
- 4 Government
- 5 Demographics
- 6 Notable people
- 7 References
- 8 External links
The City owns and operates Kirsch Municipal Airport (KIRS), which is located in northeast corner of the City. Kirsch Municipal is a general aviation airport and features two runways; the primary runway is 5,200 feet long with a secondary, crosswind runway 3,457 feet long.
Sturgis is served by Michigan Southern Railroad Company for commercial rail service. The historic Sturgis Train Depot, built in 1895, is one of the oldest train depots in West Michigan. In 2014, it was moved across town and is now being renovated to become the home of the Sturgis Historical Museum.
Founding of the Community
In 1827, Judge John Sturges came to the St. Joseph Valley area in southern Michigan territory and settled in what is now Sturgis. The original site of his home can be seen at Pioneer Park, maintained by the City of Sturgis. Legend has it that Sturgis was chosen as the town's name because Mrs. John Sturgis baked a pan of biscuits and sent them to a surveying party near their cabin. Lewis Cass, who later became governor, was part of that surveying party. When the time came to name the town, Governor Cass remembered the biscuits and was insistent that the town be named Sturgis. In 1896, Sturgis officially became a city.
Sturgis: "The Electric City"
Sturgis is known as the "Electric City" due to its municipal electric utility and hydroelectric dam, which date back to the early days of the community. The City-owned electric department has served the Sturgis area since the city's inception in 1896. In 1909, the City of Sturgis approved construction of a hydro electric dam on the St. Joseph River near Centreville, Michigan. The dam began operation on September 3, 1911, and continues to serve the community. In 2011, the City celebrated the centennial of the Dam as part of "Sturgis Dam Days."
Sister City Relationship
Sturgis is a Sister City to Wiesloch, Germany. In 1966, the cities of Wiesloch and Sturgis decided to form a Sister City partnership that grew out of President Eisenhower's People-to-People program which was formed to increase cultural awareness and promote friendship. In 1967 Wiesloch formally began the cultural exchange by sending a community choir to Sturgis. In 1969 Sturgis reciprocated, sending its community choir to Wiesloch. In 1977, the exchange program was expanded to include students, who each year spend three weeks in their partner's home. In 1989 a Sturgis teacher worked in Wiesloch as part of the Sister City program. This "teacher exchange" continues periodically as teachers from Wiesloch work in Sturgis and vice versa.
In 2016 Sturgis and Wiesloch celebrated the 50th Anniversary of their Sister City partnership.
Kickoff City for Michigan Week
For many years, in the third week of May, Sturgis served as the kickoff city for Michigan Week, a statewide celebration. Many prominent political figures walked in the parade annually. These included State Representatives and State Senators as well as the 6th District U.S. Representative and periodically the Governor of Michigan. With statewide celebration of Michigan Week waning, in 2010, Sturgis ended the tradition of holding the Michigan Week Kick-Off, opting to celebrate Sturgis Dam Days in June. Sturgis Dam Days was held in honor of the hydroelectric dam. The 100-year anniversary of the Sturgis Dam was celebrated at the Sturgis Dam Days in 2011. In 2012, the Sturgis community began celebrating Sturgis Fest during the last week in June.
Sturgis Rail Depot
On June 23-24, 2014, the historic Sturgis Rail Depot was moved from its location on West Main & N. Clay Streets to a more central location on W. Chicago Road. The 120-year-old building, featuring masonry walls up to 2 feet thick and weighing 304 tons, was moved by Wolfe House & Building Movers. The building was elevated by a Unified Jacking System and mounted on the Buckingham Dolly System for the quarter of a mile move across town.
The City of Sturgis is a Council-Manager Form of government with a nine-member City Commission. The City is divided into four precincts and two members of the Commission are elected from each precinct with one member elected from the City at large. Members elected from precincts serve a term of four years while the member at large serves a two-year term. Each year in November the Commission nominates one of its members as Mayor and another as Vice-Mayor. The current Mayor is Robert Hile and the current Vice-Mayor is Jon W. Good.
The City Commission is the legislative body, responsible for the passage of municipal ordinances and the overall direction of City. The City Commission appoints a professional City Manager, who manages the day-to-day operations of the City, as well as the City Attorney, City Assessor, City Treasurer, and City Clerk. The Commission sets policy to be carried out by the City Manager and City staff. 
As of the Census of 2010, there were 10,994 people, 4,088 households, and 2,632 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,694.0 inhabitants per square mile (654.1/km2). There were 4,595 housing units at an average density of . The racial makeup of the city was 73.6% White, 1.4% African American, 0.3% Native American, 0.9% Asian, 1.6% from other races, and 3.2% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 20.8% of the population.
There were 4,088 households of which 39.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 42.8% were married couples living together, 15.0% had a female householder with no husband present, 6.6% had a male householder with no wife present, and 35.6% were non-families. 30.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 13% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.65 and the average family size was 3.28.
The median age in the city was 32.3 years. 30% of residents were under the age of 18; 9.2% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 26.1% were from 25 to 44; 22% were from 45 to 64; and 12.6% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 47.3% male and 52.7% female.
As of the census of 2000, there were 11,285 people, 4,293 households, and 2,726 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,894.5 inhabitants per square mile (731.5/km2). There were 4,529 housing units at an average density of 760.3 per square mile (293.6/km2). As of 2000, the racial makeup of the city was 91% White, 1% African American, 0.2% Native American, 1.4% Asian, 4.4% from other races, and 2.0% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 20% of the population.
There were 4,293 households out of which 35.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.6% were married couples living together, 12.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.5% were non-families. 30.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.57 and the average family size was 3.20.
In the city, the population was spread out with 28.2% under the age of 18, 11.5% from 18 to 24, 27.9% from 25 to 44, 17.7% from 45 to 64, and 14.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females there were 92.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 86.1 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $33,838, and the median income for a family was $43,381. Males had a median income of $29,508 versus $21,810 for females. The per capita income for the city was $15,990. About 11.2% of families and 16.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 23.5% of those under age 18 and 10.0% of those age 65 or over.
- Tom Bodett, author, voice actor, and radio host and spokesperson for Motel 6, was born in Illinois, raised in Sturgis.
- Cameron S. Brown, former state senator of the 16th Senate District of Michigan, is from Sturgis.
- Walter T. Kelley, innovator of Beekeeping methods and materials.
- June MacCloy, actress, was born in Sturgis.
- Perle Mesta, socialite and Ambassador to Luxembourg, was born in Sturgis.
- Frank W. Parker, New Mexico Supreme Court justice, was born in Sturgis.
- William Balser Skirvin, business executive and oilman, was born in Sturgis.
- Marlin Stutzman, former congressman from Indiana, was born in Sturgis.
- Verne Troyer, actor, was born in Sturgis, but grew up in Centreville, Michigan.
- Paul Weatherwax, film editor, two-time Academy Award winner, was born in Sturgis.
- "US Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-11-25.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-11-25.
- "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 9, 2017.
- "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- ZIP code lookup, USPS.com
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- Craig, Kevin (June 24, 2014). "Historic Sturgis Train Depot To Be Moved". Fox 17. Retrieved April 27, 2017.
- About Sturgis Hospital
- Sturgis, Michigan: Pictorial City Directory and Year Book, September, 1915, Willis C. Bailey, Coldwater, Mich., 1915
- The story of Sturgis: From past to present, City of Sturgis, retrieved March 11, 2008
- "Stadt Wiesloch: Sturgis". www.wiesloch.de. Retrieved 2016-01-18.
- "Moving the Sturgis Railroad Depot". Retrieved April 27, 2017.
- "Sturgis Historical Museum - At the Depot". Sturgis Historical Society. Retrieved April 27, 2017.
- "City Commission". City of Sturgis - City Commission. Retrieved 2016-07-15.
- "Commission Members". City of Sturgis - Commission Members. Retrieved 2016-07-15.
- "Sturgis Michigan - City of Sturgis Michigan Website". www.sturgismi.gov. Retrieved 2017-07-27.
- "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Sturgis, Michigan.|
- City of Sturgis, Michigan
- Sturgis Chamber of Commerce
- Sturgis Historical Society
- River Country Tourism
- St. Joe H2O (County Tourism)