Charlevoix (/ˈʃɑːrləvɔɪ/ SHARL-ə-voy) is a city in the U.S.
state of Michigan. The population was 2,513 at the 2010 census. It is
the county seat of Charlevoix County.
Charlevoix Township is a separate municipal entity that completely
surrounds the city and has a year-round population of 1,697. Typical
Michigan towns, Charlevoix has a much higher seasonal
tourist population in the summer.
U.S. Coast Guard Station
1.3 Major highways
2.1 Settlement (1850s and 1860s)
2.2 Commercial and Cultural Transformation (1869-1880s)
2.3 Early resort era (1880s - 1918)
2.4 Interwar Era (1919–1945)
2.5 Post WWII era (1945 - 1980)
2.6 1980 - 2010
5 Media and culture
6 Notable people
8.1 2010 census
8.2 2000 census
9 Current issues
12 External links
The short Pine River flows through downtown, past the Charlevoix South
Pier Light Station, and into Lake Michigan
The city is situated between Lake
Michigan and the western end of Lake
Charlevoix, which drains into Lake
Michigan through the short Round
Lake/Pine River complex in the heart of downtown Charlevoix. The
Charlevoix South Pier Light Station
Charlevoix South Pier Light Station marks the opening of the channel
onto Lake Michigan. Charlevoix's Round Lake has been called the best
natural harbor on Lake Michigan. The only way to get from Lake
Michigan to East Jordan,
Boyne City and other sites on Lake Charlevoix
by boat is via Charlevoix. As a result, much commercial, industrial,
and recreational boat traffic passes through Charlevoix.
U.S. Coast Guard Station
The city of Charlevoix has a
U.S. Coast Guard station located in its
vicinity. Station Charlevoix has served the waters of Lake Charlevoix
Michigan for over one hundred years. The station was first
sited in 1898 on the south break wall of the Pine River Channel,
leading into Lake Michigan. It was officially commissioned as a United
States Lifesaving Service Station July 5, 1900. During the early
1960s, the station was relocated to its present-day location along the
Pine River Channel's
Lake Charlevoix end. The area of response for
Station Charlevoix runs from Cross Village down to Leland, extending
Michigan through Beaver Island and the North and South Fox
Islands, and covers numerous inland lakes and waterways. Spring
through late fall the 41' UTB and the 25' RB-S are in operation and
during the winter months, the 14' ice skiff is put into operation.
There is also a
U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla based at the
Station. Some USCG Auxiliary surface facilities are occasionally
moored at Station Charlevoix.
The US-31–Island Lake Outlet Bridge, a bascule bridge in Charlevoix
that carries US 31
US 31 is a major highway running through the heart of the city.
It continues southerly toward
Traverse City and Muskegon and northerly
toward Petoskey to a terminus near Mackinaw City.
M-66 terminates at US 31 in Charlevoix and continues southerly
through East Jordan and Kalkaska en route to the southern part of the
C-56 begins at US 31 just northeast of the city and continues
east-southeasterly toward Boyne City.
C-65 ends at US 31 immediately west of the M-66 junction on the south
side of the city. This route continues southerly toward Ellsworth and
The Charlevoix County Transit System provides demand responsive
transport, or dial-a-ride, bus service Monday-Saturday for the entire
county. Fares are distance based.
Indian Trails provides daily intercity bus service between Grand
Michigan and Petoskey, Michigan.
Charlevoix Depot Museum is housed in the original train station; it is
listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Regular intercity passenger train service ended on September 1, 1962
Chesapeake and Ohio Railway
Chesapeake and Ohio Railway (C&O) discontinued Traverse
Michigan – Charlevoix – Petoskey,
Michigan service. Freight
rail service ended between Charlevoix and Williamsburg,
Chessie System abandoned the track. The state of Michigan
purchased the track between Charlevoix and Petoskey from the Chessie
System Railroads and contracted
Michigan Northern Railway to operate
it. This section of track was removed in the 1990s because of a series
of washouts and no rail freight customers in Charlevoix. Sections of
this rail line now serve as a bicycle trail. The Charlevoix railroad
depot has been adapted as a museum of the Charlevoix Historical
Charlevoix Municipal Airport
Charlevoix Municipal Airport (IATA: CVX, ICAO: KCVX) is a public
airport. In addition to private planes, the airport offers charter
flights to Beaver Island and other locations (via
Island Airways and
Fresh Air Aviation).
Commercial airlines serve
Pellston Regional Airport
Pellston Regional Airport (40 miles),
Cherry Capital Airport
Cherry Capital Airport (48 miles), and Alpena County
Regional Airport (108 miles).
See also: History of Northern Michigan
Charlevoix is named after Pierre François Xavier de Charlevoix, a
French explorer who travelled the
Great Lakes and was said to have
stayed the night on Fisherman's Island during a harsh storm. During
this time Native Americans were thought to have lived in the Pine
River valley. The Odawa and Ojibwe lived throughout northern Michigan
prior to European colonization.
Settlement (1850s and 1860s)
Charlevoix became the county seat in 1869 when Charlevoix County was
formed, but by 1876, the
Grand Rapids and Indiana Railroad
Grand Rapids and Indiana Railroad had built a
line north to Petoskey with stops in
Boyne Falls and Melrose. This
link to cities in lower
Michigan brought increased population to
Charlevoix County, and new political power to the eastern part of the
European-American settlement of Charlevoix was initially by fishermen,
who were there by 1852. Soon after its formation in the 1850s, the
residents of Charlevoix entered into a short-lived conflict with Jesse
Strang, leader and namesake of the Strangite Mormons, and then
self-proclaimed 'king' of Beaver Island. Relations between Charlevoix
residents and the Strangites were often tense. In 1853, a gunfight
broke out between the two groups as the townspeople refused to hand
over a man who was called for jury duty on the island, an event known
locally as The Battle of Pine River. Strang was assassinated on June
Portion of the historic Chicago Club, one of the several large resort
communities that developed in Charlevoix around the turn of the 20th
The Homestead Act of 1862 brought many Civil War veterans and
speculators to Northern Michigan. It sold 160-acre tracts of land for
$1.25 an acre. .
In 1864, settlers built a large dock at the mouth of the Pine River on
Lake Michigan. Boats there were exposed to the harsh vicissitudes of
Great Lakes weather, so local entrepreneurs sought to connect Lake
Michigan to an inland harbor at Round Lake. The Pine River channel was
dredged in 1869, connecting Lake
Michigan to Lake
In 1866, early settler John S. Dixon completed plats of the entire
town (then called "Pine River"), showing that he owned most of the
land. By 1867, Charlevoix had its first boarding house, the
Fountain City House  Charlevoix became the county seat in 1869
when Charlevoix County was formed.
Commercial and Cultural Transformation (1869-1880s)
In 1869, the Charlevoix Sentinel was founded, which became a major
newspaper of record for the area for the next 60 years.
Prior to 1869,
Lake Charlevoix (then known as Pine Lake) was two feet
higher than Round Lake, which was 2 feet higher than Lake Michigan. In
order to aid lumber and boat traffic, city leaders pooled resources to
cut a channel between
Lake Charlevoix to Round Lake, and to dredge the
Pine River for navigation between Round Lake and Lake Michigan. When
this was completed in 1869, lake levels dropped, and navigation
Lake Charlevoix and Lake
Michigan was established. This had
profound commercial implications for the area.
Another transformative event came in November 1873 when rail
operations arrived in "Bear Creek" (now known as Petoskey), 16 miles
north. Passengers and goods passed through Petoskey and made their
way to Charlevoix via boat or stagecoach. During the 1870s,
Presbyterian evangelist Rev. George W. Wood, Jr. sold bibles to
homesteading settlers throughout Charlevoix and Emmet Counties.
Between 1868 and 1884, the Army Corps of Engineers used dredging and
revetment to increase Pine River channel width from 75 feet to over
100 feet, and expanded the channel depth from under 6 feet to a depth
of 12 feet. In 1876, Charlevoix was declared a port of entry and
became one of the busiest ports on the Great Lakes. Lumber mills
proliferated as the forests along
Lake Charlevoix could finally be
In 1876, John Nichols consolidated Charlevoix lumber operations into
the Charlevoix Lumber Company, and it became a Charlevoix institution
for decades. At its height in the late 1800s, the company annually
shipped out more than 40 million board feet of lumber before it
stripped much of the peninsula. For many years Charlevoix was a
fueling stop for the wood-powered steamships on Lake Michigan.
Charlevoix incorporated as a village in 1879.
In June 1883, Charles J. Strang, the son of Mormon King James J.
Strang started the Charlevoix Journal, which would be renamed the
Charlevoix Courier in 1894. Dr. Levi Lewis and his wife Edith
built the 800-seat "Lewis Grand Opera House" along the Pine River in
1883 in order to bring more culture to the backwater pioneer town.
In October 1884, East Jordan to be the county seat, followed by Boyne
City becoming the county seat in 1886. Charlevoix became the county
seat again in 1894. The Argo Milling Company was built in 1886
along the Pine River.  By 1914, many small businesses were
established along Bridge Street. 
Early resort era (1880s - 1918)
In 1880, several members of the First Congregational Church of Chicago
formed a Chicago Summer Resort association, now known as the "Chicago
Club." Early citizens contributed to the founding of such early
institutions as the Lewis Grand
Opera House (1883) and Methodist
(1878) and Congregational (1885) churches.
In 1892, the first rail traffic to Charlevoix arrived as the Chicago
Michigan Railway extended rail service from Traverse city to
Bay View. (This is not related to the 1901 Detroit and Charlevoix
Railroad line to East Jordan). Rail lines opened up formerly remote
tracts of inland land and lakeshore to commercial, industrial, resort,
and other real estate development, as follows:
The Detroit-based D.M. Ferry Seed Company expanded their operations in
Northern Michigan, developing the land along
Lake Charlevoix in 1892.
They built a 200' dock and warehouse complex there by 1905. Ferry's
Charlevoix operations continued until 1927.
In 1899, the
Federal Revenue Cutter Service
Federal Revenue Cutter Service came to Charlevoix and
began tending buoys on the north side of the Round lake train
bridge. This site would later become known as the Coast Guard
By 1901, industrialist James M. Felts of
Rushville, Indiana had
purchased thousands of acres between Mount McSauba and Big Rock point
 and began construction of a massive sugar beet factory to be
called the Charlevoix Sugar Company. The National Construction
Company of Detroit built the factory between 1902 and 1903 at the
point where Stover Creek emptied into Pine Lake. The factory was
not profitable, and by 1911 the factory had closed and the
machinery was removed to Ohio. The building, made almost
entirely of concrete, slowly decayed until it was demolished in
1964 to make room for the Irish boat shop.
In 1909, Chicago real estate developer and Chicago Club of Charlevoix
member Edward Carson Waller purchased 2000-acres north of the Pere
Marquette rail line including the former Felts tract. He replanted the
land with pine trees, and commissioned architect
Frank Lloyd Wright
Frank Lloyd Wright to
create a bathing pavilion on the site. The pavilion burned down in
1922 or 1923, but Waller continued to own the tract until his
death in 1931. To this day, Waller Road extends through a large
residential area on the north side of Charlevoix.
The rail also brought tourist traffic during the summer. It was not
long before the city became known as a resort destination. With three
summer associations (the Belvedere Club, Sequanota Club, and the
Chicago Club); a number of luxurious summer hotels, including The Inn
and The Beach; and rail service at two train depots on the Pere
Marquette Railway line (one depot for the
Belvedere Club on the south
side of Round Lake and one on the north side near the Chicago Club);
Charlevoix became known as one of the nation's finest summer
In 1913, the Pine Point development (near Oyster Bay) opened on Pine
Lake, making it one of the earliest neighborhood subdivisions in the
Charlevoix was also a popular destination for many lake passenger
liners, including the Manitou, Alabama, North American, South
American, Milwaukee Clipper, Illinois, and others. By 1907, the
Gazetteer published by R.L. Polk & Co. listed Charlevoix as a port
of call for several
Michigan steamboat lines including:
the Anchor Line (Erie and Western Transportation Company from Buffalo,
Erie, Cleveland, and Detroit to the summer resorts, Mackinac Island,
Sault Ste. Marie, Marquette, Houghton and Hancock, Duluth, St. Paul,
Minneapolis etc. connecting at Mackinaw Island with steamer lines to
and from Milwaukee and Chicago, Petoskey, Charlevoix, Frankfort, Bay
View, and Green Bay Ports.)
Boyne City and Charlevoix Line (daily)
East Jordan and Charlevoix Steamboat Line
Manitou Steamship Company (Between Chicago, Frankfort, Charlevoix,
Petoskey, Roaring Brook, Wequetonsing, Harbor Springs, Bay View, and
Michigan Transportation Company (every Wednesday and Saturday
between Chicago and Ludington, Manistee, Frankfort, Glen Haven, Glen
Arbor, Northport, Suttons Bay, Traverse City, Old Mission, Charlevoix,
Petoskey, Harbor Springs, Bay View, St. James, St. Ignace, Mackinac
Island, and Cheboygan)
Traverse Bay Transportation Company (daily between Traverse City,
Northport, Charlevoix, and intermediate points)
Interwar Era (1919–1945)
Michigan continued to be a resort destination after World War
Beginning in 1918 real estate agent, regional promotor, and
self-taught architect Earl Young began to design and build his
signature "mushroom houses" and other buildings out of locally
In 1925, members of the Charlevoix Summer Resort Association decided
their existing social club needed a golf course. The members called on
Scotsman William Watson, who was working across town as head pro of
the Chicago Club. Watson’s resume included working on such layouts
Interlachen Country Club in Minneapolis, Harding Park Golf Club,
Olympic Club in San Francisco. At Belvedere he used five teams
of horses and 150 men to build 18 holes through a pair of valleys
dissected by Marion Center Rd. just south of town. Opened in 1927, the
course soon became a respected tournament venue.
In 1918, Albert Loeb, an executive from the Sears corporation in
Chicago, built an experimental farm on the southern outskirts of
Charlevoix. Known as Loeb Farms, the farm raised prizewinning cattle
sold through the Sears Catalog. In its heyday it was the primary
employer in Charlevoix County. Loeb's son became involved in an
infamous murder trial (the
Leopold and Loeb
Leopold and Loeb trial). During the trial,
Scopes trial lawyer
Clarence Darrow arrived at the Charlevoix train
station to visit the Loeb family at Loeb Farms.
Albert Loeb died in
1924 and the farm closed in 1927 after a three-year agricultural
In 1926. Pine Lake was renamed Lake Charlevoix.
Between 1927 and 1948, Former
Michigan Football player Lewis Reimann
founded Camp Charlevoix as a recreational camp for at-risk boys.
first in Ironton,
Michigan and then in 1928 at a permanent 170 acre
site on the shores of Lake Charlevoix. Reimann operated Camp
Charlevoix for more than 20 years. After an expansion in 1937,
Reimann sold Camp Charlevoix in 1948. Camp Charlevoix
continued operations under Kenneth W. Smith until at least 1960.
During Prohibition, Charlevoix became a popular place for gang members
from the Chicago area. The Colonial Club, a restaurant and gambling
joint on the city's north side became known as a popular place for the
Midwest's most powerful and influential. John Koch, the club's owner,
kept automobile license number "2", only second to the governor – a
telling sign of his influence. The converted lumber barge Keuka served
as a blind pig and speakeasy and sailed nightly between
Boyne City and
Charlevoix, hosting its guests in relative comfort. A murder aboard
the ship and the pressure of
US Treasury Department
US Treasury Department surveillance,
however, forced the owner to scuttle the vessel in Lake Charlevoix.
In 1930, the first Charlevoix Venetian Festival started as a
candle-lit boat parade. (It has continued to be held annually and
grown in length and in the types of entertainment offered.)
In the early 1930s photographer and historian Bob Miles began a
42-year career documenting the city of Charlevoix and surrounding
On March 9, 1935, The Petoskey
Kiwanis Club sponsored a charter
meeting of the Charlevloix Kiwanis Club. In 1939, the Charlevoix
Kiwanis Club created Boy Scout Troop 11. Troop 11 is the second
oldest Boy Scout troop in Northern Michigan.
Several bridges had been built to cross the Pine River. A drawbridge
was planned to be built in 1940, but due to Pearl Harbor, the
completion of the current Charlevoix drawbridge bridge was delayed
Post WWII era (1945 - 1980)
The City of Charlevoix suffered economically during the decades after
World War II, due to industrial restructuring and changes in fashion,
as people used automobiles and airplanes to travel to new tourist
destinations. The manufacturing base was displaced with jobs moved
elsewhere, the train lines to the city ceased operating, and the
larger tourist hotels closed due to competition from other locations.
Many empty buildings were left downtown. Several large corporations,
such as the nuclear power plant and the cement plant, set up
operations in the early 1960s and spurred economic development in the
In the 1960s, the lifesaving station was relocated from along the
channel to the east part of Round Lake.
Charlevoix City Hall
November 18, 1958, Charlevoix City Hall served as a makeshift morgue
for the bodies of crewmen of the
SS Carl D. Bradley
SS Carl D. Bradley after the lake
freighter foundered in Lake
Michigan during a severe storm. The USCGC
Sundew, stationed at Charlevoix, was one of the first vessels to
arrive at the search area and played a pivotal role in that night's
rescue of the two surviving crewmen.
Charlevoix was home to Michigan's first nuclear power plant, Big Rock
Point, which operated from 1962 to 1997.
On January 7, 1971 an unarmed USAF B-52C-45-BO, 54-2666, of the 9th
BW, Westover AFB, Massachusetts, crashed into Lake
Charlevoix during a practice bomb run, exploding on impact. Only a
small amount of wreckage, two life vests, and some spilled fuel were
found in Little Traverse Bay. The bomber went down six nautical miles
from the Bay Shore Air Force Radar Site and close to the Big Rock
Point Nuclear Plant. Nine crew KWF.
In the 1960s, the Medusa corporation decided to build their first
greenfield cement plant. they build a cement plant in Charlevoix that
came on line in 1967.  The plant is located south of town off of
US 31 near Fisherman's Island State Park. In the late 1970s, Crane
Company took over Medusa and began consolidating operations. This not
only resulted in modernization and investment in the Charlevoix plant,
but personnel (and their families) from other Crane cement holdings
were transferred into the Charlevoix area in the late 1970s and early
1980s. . In the late 1990s the cement plant was bought out by
Cemex, a transnational company from Mexico. In 2000
Cemex sold the
plant to St Marys Cement Group. Until 2013 the cement plant was a
frequent port of call for the oldest freighter on the great lakes, SS
St. Marys Challenger.
In 1965 the
Loeb Farms complex that had been fallow since 1927, was
turned into a medieval castle tourist attraction by John Van Haver
. This venture quickly folded and was bought by the Reibel family
in 1969. For the next ~25 years, the
Castle Farms complex hosted large
rock concerts. In 1974, Terry and Judy Edger  opened WVOY-AM in
Charlevoix. WVOY was a 5,000-watt daytime-only station at
1270 kHz on the AM dial. WVOY was one of the first
all-contemporary-hit-music radio stations in northern
featured Bill Vogel ("The Captain," formerly of Detroit's WDRQ), John
Yaroch, Rick Durkin, and other major-market-quality talent. Despite
WVOY's limited signal, the station became extremely popular and gave
Michigan listeners a taste of the "big city" radio sound.
1980 - 2010
In May 1980, former WVOY employee Tim Moore  started the WKHQ-FM
"The Rhythm of the Northwest" radio station in downtown Charlevoix
using TM Programming's "Stereo Rock" format. Despite moving its
studios to Petoskey in the 1990s, WKHQ is still licensed as being from
Charlevoix. The station was mentioned by
Casey Casem several times on
American Top 40
American Top 40 radio program in the 1980s.
The 1980s brought many condominium developments in the area.
In 1991, former farmland near Stover Creek along M-66 was developed
into "Charlevoix Commons" shopping center, anchored by a K-mart 
with the Charlevoix Estates mobile home park across the street.
Several new businesses established themselves in this area, and the
Post office moved from downtown to this site in 1996.
In 1993 600 acres of the undeveloped Waller tract on the north side of
town was transformed into an 18-hole golf course and residential
development named the Charlevoix Country Club.
After the 1996 murder of JonBenét Ramsey, whose family spent summers
in Charlevoix and had won a pageant in the town, Charlevoix became
a regular haven for tabloid photographers, hoping to catch a glimpse
of the Ramsey family. John Ramsey, JonBenet's father and husband of
the late Patsy Ramsey, still resides in Charlevoix.
In 1997, Charlevoix made national news when it experienced a
fireworks disaster during the Venetian Festival. At least one person
died and 17 othes were injured, while windows were shattered across
In 2004 and 2005,
Wal-Mart tried to build a 157,00 square foot
superstore on the edge of town (Charlevoix Township) near the
intersection of US-31 and Marion Center Road across from the
Charlevoix airport. Amid community disagreement, some local
businesses and residents formed a group called "This Is Our Town"
and successfully resisted the entry of
Wal-Mart into their
For a list of historical landmarks, see Charlevoix County.
Petunia Planting- Petunia planting began in 1982 when "Keep Charlevoix
Beautiful" organization member Dale Boss had a vision to line the
streets of the city with thousands of petunias from the north side of
the city limit all the way to the south and "Operation Petunia" began.
Now, every Thursday before
Memorial Day hundreds of residents gather
to plant over 60,000 petunias up and down Main Street.
Venetian-The Venetian Festival began in 1931 with a very simple boat
show in Charlevoix's Round Lake and has now grown into a week-long
festival bringing in tens of thousands of people and costing $200,000.
Venetian now includes two nights of some of the best fireworks in
Northern Michigan, big name concerts, a parade, athletic events, a
carnival, a boat parade, and many more family friendly and adult
Apple Fest- The 30th annual Apple Festival was celebrated in October
2008. The Apple Festival celebrates one of Northern Michigan's most
prominent fruits, the apple. It gives local farmers the chance to sell
their harvest right in the downtown Charlevoix area. The festival also
includes pony rides, face painting, a craft show and many more
activities to draw in tourism.
Car Raffle- Charlevoix has an annual car raffle, sponsored by
Charlevoix Chamber of Commerce, to generate funds for capital
improvements and operations.
Art and Craft Show- The art and craft show is held one weekend in July
each summer in downtown Charlevoix. 150 artists and craftsmen come
from all over the United States to sell their work.
View of downtown Charlevoix
View of Round Lake from downtown Charlevoix
Charlevoix bills itself as "Charlevoix the Beautiful" on its
promotional literature and on municipal signs around the city. This
moniker was also the name of a book by prominent local "stone house"
architect Earl Young.
Michigan tourist destinations are:
Harbor Springs, Michigan
Horton Bay, Michigan, childhood stomping grounds of Ernest
Traverse City, Michigan
the Ironton Ferry
Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore
Media and culture
Charlevoix is primarily served by four newspapers: the Charlevoix
Courier, the Petoskey News Review, the
Traverse City Record-Eagle, and
the Detroit Free Press. Most television and radio stations are based
Traverse City and serve all of the Northern
Charlevoix has one movie tri-plex theater embedded within its downtown
and no big box shopping outlets except for Kmart, having outlawed them
after refusing Wal-Mart's proposed store on the edge of the city.
There is a community pool on the north side of town and a bowling
alley on the south side near the Charlevoix Municipal Airport. Typical
of small towns, high school athletic events are an integral part of
Charlevoix's culture. During the winter, the town's basketball team
draws much of the locals' attention.
Recently, a skate park was built on the south side of town with the
help of donations. The Charlevoix Community Skatepark opened in 2006.
The park is supervised by Cameron Canupp and Laura Stebe and helmets
are required. Skateboards, Inline Skates and BMX bikes are allowed.
Several notable golf courses are built around Charlevoix: Belvedere
Golf Club, Charlevoix Country Club, Dunmaglas, Antrim Dells, and the
nine-hole Charlevoix Municipal Golf Course, which was once eighteen
holes as part of the Chicago Club.
Skiing in the area is common winter sport in Northern Michigan, with
the closest resort being
Boyne Mountain near Boyne City.
Charlevoix used to be a "one stoplight town" until it received a
second stoplight in the 1980s at the intersection of M-66 and US 31.
Los Angeles-based singer/songwriter Joe Henry, who spent much of his
childhood in Michigan, includes a song entitled 'Charlevoix' on his
1990 album Shuffletown.
Robert Boss, professional football player.
Bob Carey, All-American football and track-and-field athlete.
Jeff Drenth, runner, member of Nike
Athletics West team from 1984 to
his death in 1986,
Mid-American Conference cross-country
Ernest Hemingway, iconic author, spent his boyhood summers in the
area, setting many of his
Nick Adams Stories
Nick Adams Stories on or near Lake
Albert Loeb, lawyer and Vice President of
Sears and Roebuck
Sears and Roebuck who built
the Castle Farm test farm complex in Charlevoix.
Richard Albert Loeb, son of Albert, of
Leopold and Loeb
Leopold and Loeb murder trial
Jetty Rae, musician and independent artist.
John Bennett Ramsey, businessman, father of JonBenet Ramsey, resided
JonBenét Ramsey summered here with her family until her death in
1996, and her family moved here after her murder.
Willard J. Smith, thirteenth Commandant of the United States Coast
Glendon Swarthout, novelist.
Earl Young, builder of distinctive stone houses
Alson Wood, Wisconsin politician, lived in Charlevoix.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total
area of 2.17 square miles (5.62 km2), of which 2.05 square miles
(5.31 km2) is land and 0.12 square miles (0.31 km2) is
Charlevoix is part of Northern Michigan.
This climatic region has large seasonal temperature differences, with
warm to hot (and often humid) summers and cold (sometimes severely
cold) winters. According to the Köppen
Climate Classification system,
Charlevoix has a humid continental climate, abbreviated "Dfb" on
Climate data for Charlevoix,
Record high °F (°C)
Average high °F (°C)
Average low °F (°C)
Record low °F (°C)
Average precipitation inches (mm)
Average snowfall inches (cm)
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.01 in)
Average snowy days (≥ 0.1 in)
U.S. Decennial Census
As of the census of 2010, there were 2,513 people, 1,266
households, and 651 families residing in the city. The population
density was 1,225.9 inhabitants per square mile (473.3/km2). There
were 2,201 housing units at an average density of 1,073.7 per square
mile (414.6/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 94.2% White, 1.2%
African American, 2.0% Native American, 0.5% Asian, 0.2% from other
races, and 1.8% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race
were 0.9% of the population.
There were 1,266 households of which 20.3% had children under the age
of 18 living with them, 36.9% were married couples living together,
10.7% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.8% had a
male householder with no wife present, and 48.6% were non-families.
42.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 18.9% had
someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average
household size was 1.94 and the average family size was 2.61.
The median age in the city was 48.1 years. 17.5% of residents were
under the age of 18; 7.9% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 19.8%
were from 25 to 44; 31.3% were from 45 to 64; and 23.6% were 65 years
of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 47.2% male and
As of the census  of 2000, there were 2,994 people, 1,375
households, and 812 families residing in the city. The population
density was 1,465.8 per square mile (566.7/km2). There were 2,096
housing units at an average density of 1,026.2 per square mile
(396.7/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 94.92% White, 0.27%
African American, 2.84% Native American, 0.20% Asian, 0.43% from other
races, and 1.34% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any
race were 1.24% of the population.
There were 1,375 households out of which 25.7% had children under the
age of 18 living with them, 46.7% were married couples living
together, 9.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and
40.9% were non-families. 35.4% of all households were made up of
individuals and 15.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age
or older. The average household size was 2.14 and the average family
size was 2.76.
In the city, the population was spread out with 21.6% under the age of
18, 8.4% from 18 to 24, 26.4% from 25 to 44, 24.2% from 45 to 64, and
19.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 41 years.
For every 100 females there were 88.7 males. For every 100 females age
18 and over, there were 84.0 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $35,284, and the
median income for a family was $42,853. Males had a median income of
$31,544 versus $24,375 for females. The per capita income for the city
was $21,319. About 3.7% of families and 9.5% of the population were
below the poverty line, including 6.8% of those under age 18 and 9.1%
of those age 65 or over.
Charlevoix has recently begun to contend with the prospect of urban
sprawl. Following the construction of a K-mart plaza development in
the 1990s, many businesses and the post office moved to this area.
There was significant controversy in the 1990s over the decision to
extend water pipes into rural farmland south of Charlevoix in order to
build a new Charlevoix High School. In the early 2000s,
Charlevoix, led by Green Party Drain Commissioner JoAnne Beemon,
successfully fought off a bid by
Walmart to open a store along this
new water pipeline on the south edge of town.
In 2005, a
Wal-Mart store was blocked by the city of Charlevoix and
store size limits were put into place.
From 2006 to 2008, Charlevoix has offered to host the LaSalle-Griffon
Project, a project that seeks to the ruins of a shipwreck that may be
In late 2012, Charlevoix has a local controversy about an Onaway Stone
fireplace that was donated and being constructed in east park with an
annual operating cost of $6,700.00.The project was eventually shut
Chamber of Commerce
Panorama of downtown Charlevoix
Harsha House, part of the Charlevoix Historical Society
Michigan Sunset in Charlevoix, Michigan
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charlevoixparkavenue.wordpress.com. Retrieved 2014-12-06.
^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on April 23, 2016.
Retrieved April 14, 2016. In 1867 the Fountain City House was
commenced as a hotel or boarding house.
^ "Charlevoix Courier". Schurtz Communications. Retrieved 2 June 2016.
In 1936, the Courier's number one competitor, the Charlevoix Sentinel,
founded in 1869 by De Witt C. Leach and sold to Willard Smith in March
1870, keeled under the economic pressure of the Great
^ "Historical photo for Aug. 1, 2014". Petoskey News. Charlevoix
Courier. Jul 31, 2014. Retrieved 2 June 2016. Until 1869, Lake
Charlevoix was 2 feet higher than Round Lake, which in turn was 2 feet
higher than Lake Michigan. Before this, boats destined for Pine Lake
had to be hauled with great effort up the little river. After the big
cut, which made a passage several times wider and much straighter,
thousands of logs could now be fed into Round Lake and the mill, and
much larger boats could reach Pine Lake, setting off a fierce
competition for the carrying of freight and passengers.
^ Evans, Jessica (June 19, 2013). "Walking through history in
Petoskey". Harbor Light News. Archived from the original on June 10,
2016. Retrieved June 2, 2016. The start of a new era rolled into town
on a gray, foggy day in 1873 when the railroad finally made its way to
Petoskey, forever changing the landscape, way of life and commerce for
the small bayside community.
^ Sixtieth Annual Report of the American Bible Society. New York:
American Bible Society. 1876. p. 59. Retrieved 12 July 2016.
Charlevoix and Emmet Counties... have been throughly explored by Rev.
G.W. Wood, who was employed as a colporteur by the American Bible
Society... The people are extremely impecunious at present, being
mainly homesteaders...the colporteur has gone on foot... [with] his
Bible laden knapsack, in paths where no vehicle could go, and by boats
on the lakes and rivers
^ Index to the Executive Documents of the House of representatives for
the 2nd session of the 47th congress 1882-1883 Volume 3. Government
Printing Office. 1883. p. 285. Retrieved 7 June 2016.
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petoskeynews.com. Retrieved 2014-12-06.
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In June 1883, Charles J. Strang, the son of King James J. Strang,
leader of the
Michigan Mormons based on Beaver Island, published the
first edition of the Charlevoix Journal." ... "In 1894, Will [Hampton]
bought the Charlevoix Journal from his brother [Charles] and changed
the name to the Charlevoix Courier
^ "Historical photo — Lewis Grand Opera House". Charlevoix Courier.
December 13, 2013. Retrieved 4 August 2016. The Lewis Grand Opera
House was built in 1883 beside the channel at the southwest corner of
the bridge by Dr. Levi Lewis, Charlevoix's first physician who had
arrived in 1869, and served the community for four decades. It was
constructed at the insistence of his culturally minded and
strong-willed wife Edith who felt the town, so isolated when she first
arrived, was, at best, a cultural backwater.
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Containing Biographies of Prominent Citizens. BF Bowne and Co.
pp. 490–493. Retrieved 6 April 2016.
^ "Going For A Drive". Charlevoix Chamber of Commerce. Retrieved 2
June 2016. The
Belvedere Club was such a successful venture another
summer resort association was formed right across Pine River Channel
in 1880. This one was called the Chicago Summer Resort Association and
was organized by members of the First Congregational Church of
^ "Historical photo for Sept. 26, 2014: Coast Guard Moorings".
Petoskey News Review. Charlevoix Courier. Sep 25, 2014. Retrieved 6
June 2016. In 1899, the
Federal Revenue Cutter Service
Federal Revenue Cutter Service came to
Charlevoix and erected a warehouse and wharf on the northeast side of
the upper channel leading into Pine Lake (renamed
Lake Charlevoix in
1926). In 1915, after the service merged with the U.S. Life Saving
Service to form the U.S. Coast Guard, the area became known as Coast
^ Palmer, R.; Roderus, Frank (1902). The Beet Sugar Gazette VOL IV No
1. March 1902. No. 84 Adams St., Chicago, Ill, USA: Beet Sugar Gazette
Company. p. 209. Retrieved 1 June 2016. James M. Felts, a
capitalist from Rushville, Ind., who has heavy landed interests in the
vicinity of Charlevoix, is general manager, and E.W. Coulter, for many
years connected with the D. M. Ferry Seed Company, is superintendent
^ "The beet factory". Charlevoix Courier. Sep 4, 2015. Retrieved 1
June 2016. In 1902 it was announced that a sugar beet factory would be
erected in Charlevoix to the south of the D. M. & Ferry & Co.
seed warehouse, now the Foster Boat Works Association condominium,
Lake Charlevoix shoreline at the intersection of the
railroad tracks and Stover Creek. Construction began in August that
year and was completed in 1903, one of the largest buildings ever
constructed in the
Lake Charlevoix basin.
^ "History of Michigan's Beet Sugar Industry". beetsugarhistory . com.
Retrieved 1 June 2016. In 1903 he accepted the Chief Engineer’s post
at a new sugar factory in Charlevoix, Michigan. The Charlevoix factory
failed to become completed because of exhausted funds.
^ "Charlevoix History". Durance Farm. Retrieved 1 June 2016.
^ Weekly Statistical Trade Journal (Volume 35 ed.). Wall Street, New
York: Willet & Gray. 1911. p. 433. Retrieved 1 June 2016. The
press reports that work on the foundation for the new Ottowa factory
has been started. Machinery from the factory at Charlevoix, Mich., is
to be used for its equipment.
^ Thomas, Avila (January 5, 1903). "Concrete Construction for Sugar
Houses" (newsletter) (Vol V No. 1). Chicago, Ill: Beet Sugar Gazette
Co. The Beet Sugar Gazette, (a semi-monthly journal devoted to the
interest of the American sugar industry). pp. 283–284.
Retrieved 1 June 2016. the Charlevoix Sugar Company's factory nearing
completion... All its retaining and enclosing walls, likewise all the
floors, are made of concrete.
^ "The beet factory". Charlevoix Courier. Sep 4, 2015. Retrieved 1
June 2016. A wrecking ball took the hulking derelict structure out in
1964 to make way for a marina, now the Irish Boat Shop.
^ "Edward C. Waller Bathing Pavilion".
Frank Lloyd Wright
Frank Lloyd Wright Trust.
Retrieved 1 June 2016.
^ "Charlevoix County 1930 plat (Hayes Twp)". W. W. Hixon & Co.
Archived from / Hixson Plat book 1930 the original Check url= value
(help) on June 24, 2016. Retrieved June 1, 2016.
^ https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/63203038 "Death: Jan. 13, 1931
River Forest Cook County Illinois, USA"... "Edward C. Waller, 85 years
old, pioneer real estate operator and a leading developer of Chicago's
earliest skyscrapers, died last night at his home in Auvergne place"
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Michigan Department of
Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA). michigan.gov. Retrieved 23
December 2016. PINE POINT ... Recordation 3/15/1913
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1970)). "DARNTON v. TOWNSHIP OF HAYES". casetext. Retrieved 23
December 2016. The plat of Pine Point was recorded in 1913.
Gazetteer and Business Directory (1907-1908 ed.).
Detroit: R.L. Polk & Co. 1907. p. 151. Retrieved 7 June
^ a b "History of
Castle Farms in Charlevoix,
Michigan Castle Farms
History". castlefarms.com. Retrieved 2014-12-06.
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Matthews and Lella Gaddis, Pioneering Purdue Women who Introduced
Science Into the Home. West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University Press.
p. 115. ISBN 978-1-55753-591-7. Pine Lake, renamed Lake
Charlevoix in 1926
^ "Camp Charlevoix alumnus reunite".
Charlevoix Courier News. August
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the original on 2011-07-08.
^ "Biography of Inductees". Upper Peninsula Sports Hall of Fame.
Archived from the original on July 17, 2011.
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Character Camp For Boys". Camp Charlevoix. Archived from the original
on July 8, 2011.
^ "Camp Charlevoix -- "A Character Camp for Boys" at Charlevoix
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Check date values in: date= (help)
^ Brougham, Rachel (July 16, 2010). "Venetian Festival history".
Petoskey News. Retrieved 2 June 2016. It began as a simple candle-lit
boat parade in 1930. Today, Charlevoix’s Venetian Festival is the
city’s highlight of the busy summer season
^ "Charlevoix Historical Society - Charlevoix, Michigan".
chxhistory.com. Archived from the original on July 17, 2014. Retrieved
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articles.petoskeynews.com. Retrieved 2014-12-06.
^ a b "
Kiwanis Club of Charlevoix
charlevoixkiwanis.org. Retrieved 2014-12-06.
^ "The Weathervane Inn, in foreground on right, was the homely Argo
Mill, below, until it came into the grasp of Earl Young's love affair
with the beauty of boulders, ever-changing Lake Michigan, the majesty
of sea gull flight and other natural wonders of Charlevoix".
charlevoixlibrary.org. Archived from the original on July 2, 2014.
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1971, page one.
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American Top 40
American Top 40 with Casey Kasem (the 1980s).
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Retrieved June 2, 2016. This center is anchored by
Kmart and Family
Farm & Home." ..."Year Built 1991
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as semi-private, under new ownership". Petoskey News Review. Retrieved
4 August 2016. Thomas deeded the property back to the club’s nine
founders, who opened the 600 acre site in 1993.
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14). People Magazine. Retrieved 4 August 2016. With school out, the
Ramseys repaired in June to Charlevoix, where they have summered since
Michigan fireworks explosion kills 1, injures 17". CNN interactive.
July 27, 1997. Retrieved 4 August 2016. At least one person died and
17 others were injured when a fireworks charge exploded during a
popular festival while thousands of spectators looked on.
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festival in Charlevoix". Associated Press. The Argus-Press (Owosso,
MI). Jul 28, 1997. Retrieved 4 August 2016.
^ HUGHES, KRISTINA (March 2, 2004). "Charlevoix council stays on
Wal-Mart fight". Petoskey News-Review. Retrieved 2 June
2016. The proposed development in the neighboring township has become
a city issue.
Wal-Mart is proposing a 157,400-square-foot Wal-Mart
Supercenter. The facility would include a full grocery center and
general retail. The center also includes a seasonal garden center. The
Wal-Mart would be located on U.S. 31 South, with entrances
from Stover Road, Marion Center Road and a truck entrance on U.S.
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Climate Summary for Charlevoix, Michigan
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Wikimedia Commons has media related to Charlesvoix, Michigan.
United States portal
Charlevoix Area Chamber of commerce, with links, calendar of events
Charlevoix County Website
Charlevoix Historical Society
Municipalities and communities of Charlevoix County, Michigan, United
County seat: Charlevoix
Grand Traverse Indian Reservation‡
Little Traverse Bay Reservation‡
‡This populated place also has portions in an adjacent