Baraga County, Michigan

Baraga County, located in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, has a rich history that stretches back thousands of years. Prior to European settlement, the region was inhabited by the Ojibwa people, who utilized the area's abundant natural resources for hunting, fishing, and gathering. The first European visitors arrived in the late 17th century, with explorers and traders seeking to establish relationships with the Native American tribes.

In the early 19th century, the area became part of the United States after the signing of the Treaty of Paris. Settlers began arriving in the mid-1800s, drawn by the vast forests and the promise of copper and iron ore deposits. The opening of the Keweenaw Bay Indian Reservation in the 1840s, established by the Treaty of La Pointe, further contributed to the region's growth.

The mining industry became the backbone of Baraga County's economy in the late 19th century. Numerous copper and iron mines were established, attracting a diverse population of workers from around the world. The boom in mining brought about the development of towns like L'Anse, Covington, and Pequaming, which grew rapidly to accommodate the industry's needs.

As the mining industry declined in the early 20th century, the economy of Baraga County shifted towards tourism and agriculture. The region's natural beauty and abundant recreational opportunities, such as fishing, boating, and hiking, attracted visitors from near and far. Today, Baraga County continues to be a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts seeking to explore its lakes, forests, and picturesque landscapes.

Overall, Baraga County's history is characterized by the coexistence and interactions between Native American tribes, European settlers, and the development of natural resources. Its story is a reflection of the challenges and transformations experienced by many communities in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.
Brief timeline of the history of Baraga County, Michigan:

  • 1836 - Baraga County is established as a county in Michigan
  • 1840 - Population of Baraga County reaches 98
  • 1846 - L'Anse Township is organized
  • 1851 - Baraga Township is organized
  • 1858 - Covington Township is organized
  • 1875 - Vermilion Township is organized
  • 1892 - Michigamme Township is organized
  • 1911 - Baraga County Courthouse is constructed
  • 1920 - Population of Baraga County reaches 8,708
  • 1927 - Baraga County Memorial Hospital is established
  • 1960 - Population of Baraga County reaches 10,918
  • 1986 - Keweenaw Bay Indian Community opens the Ojibwa Casino
  • 1996 - Baraga County Historical Museum is opened

This timeline provides a condensed summary of the historical journey of Baraga County, Michigan.