CHARLEVOIX (/ˈʃɑːrləvɔɪ/ SHARL-ə-voy ) is a city in the U.S.
Charlevoix Township is a separate municipal entity that completely
surrounds the city and has a year-round population of 1,697. Typical
* 1 Transportation
* 1.1 Water * 1.2 U.S. Coast Guard Station * 1.3 Major highways * 1.4 Bus * 1.5 Rail * 1.6 Air
* 2 History
* 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
* 7 Geography
* 8 Demographics
* 8.1 2010 census * 8.2 2000 census
* 9 Current issues * 10 Images * 11 Notes * 12 External links
The short Pine River flows through downtown, past the Charlevoix
South Pier Light Station , and into Lake
The city is situated between Lake
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
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
* 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
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
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 20, 1856. Portion of the historic Chicago Club, one of the several large resort communities that developed in Charlevoix around the turn of the 20th century.
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
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
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 harvested.
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
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
In 1892, the first rail traffic to Charlevoix arrived as the Chicago
* 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 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 moorings. * 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 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 communities. * In 1913, the Pine Point development (near Oyster Bay) opened on Pine Lake, making it one of the earliest neighborhood subdivisions in the Charlevoix area.
Charlevoix was also a popular destination for many lake passenger
liners, including the Manitou, Alabama , North American , South
November 18, 1958, Charlevoix City Hall served as a makeshift morgue
for the bodies of crewmen of the
SS Carl D. Bradley
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
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
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
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
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 downtown.
In 2004 and 2005,
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
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 .
* Beaver Island
MEDIA AND CULTURE
Charlevoix is primarily served by four newspapers: the Charlevoix
Courier , the Petoskey News Review , the
Traverse City Record-Eagle ,
Detroit Free Press
Charlevoix has one movie tri-plex theater embedded within its
downtown and no big box shopping outlets except for
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.
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,
* According to the
United States Census Bureau
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 DATA FOR CHARLEVOIX, MICHIGAN (1981–2010)
MONTH JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC YEAR
RECORD HIGH °F (°C) 54 (12) 65 (18) 83 (28) 88 (31) 94 (34) 96 (36) 99 (37) 97 (36) 95 (35) 86 (30) 74 (23) 63 (17) 99 (37)
AVERAGE HIGH °F (°C) 29.1 (−1.6) 30.5 (−0.8) 38.1 (3.4) 50.9 (10.5) 62.1 (16.7) 71.0 (21.7) 76.3 (24.6) 76.1 (24.5) 70.4 (21.3) 56.9 (13.8) 45.7 (7.6) 34.3 (1.3) 53.4 (11.9)
AVERAGE LOW °F (°C) 18.2 (−7.7) 17.4 (−8.1) 22.7 (−5.2) 34.4 (1.3) 44.3 (6.8) 54.7 (12.6) 61.1 (16.2) 60.8 (16) 53.7 (12.1) 42.8 (6) 34.5 (1.4) 24.5 (−4.2) 39.1 (3.9)
RECORD LOW °F (°C) −22 (−30) −33 (−36) −19 (−28) 3 (−16) 0 (−18) 32 (0) 41 (5) 37 (3) 32 (0) 0 (−18) 8 (−13) −8 (−22) −33 (−36)
AVERAGE PRECIPITATION INCHES (MM) 2.34 (59.4) 1.65 (41.9) 1.85 (47) 2.49 (63.2) 2.91 (73.9) 2.81 (71.4) 2.44 (62) 3.37 (85.6) 3.53 (89.7) 3.75 (95.3) 2.65 (67.3) 2.67 (67.8) 32.46 (824.5)
AVERAGE SNOWFALL INCHES (CM) 34.1 (86.6) 21.4 (54.4) 13.5 (34.3) 4.5 (11.4) 0.2 (0.5) 0 (0) 0 (0) 0 (0) 0 (0) 0.5 (1.3) 8.7 (22.1) 34.4 (87.4) 117.3 (298)
AVERAGE PRECIPITATION DAYS (≥ 0.01 IN) 18.4 12.7 10.7 10.8 11.7 10.8 9.4 11.7 13.0 15.9 15.3 18.3 158.7
AVERAGE SNOWY DAYS (≥ 0.1 IN) 16.3 10.8 7.2 2.5 0.2 0 0 0 0 0.6 5.4 14.7 57.7
EST. 2016 2,514
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 52.8% female.
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
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 Le Griffon .
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.
Chamber of Commerce *
Panorama of downtown Charlevoix *
Welcome sign *
Harsha House, part of the Charlevoix Historical Society *
Fire station *
* ^ A B "US
* ^ "MDOT - US-31 / Island Lake Outlet". michigan.gov. Retrieved
* ^ A B "Settling Charlevoix Park Avenue Prowl".
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... 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
* ^ A B "Historical photo for Feb. 28 - Charlevoix Courier:
Community". petoskeynews.com. Retrieved 2014-12-06.
* ^ "Charlevoix Courier". Schurtz Communications. Retrieved 2 June
2016. In June 1883, Charles J. Strang, the son of King James J.
Strang, leader of the
* ^ Hyster-Honig, Joan (November 14, 1993). "Do Gnomes Live Here?
Life by the hearth never dull in builder Earl Young\'s fanciful stone
Ann Arbor News . Archived from the original on February 19,
2010. Retrieved 2011-03-08.
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