Historical Signs

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July 1, 2019

Charlevoix Historical Society and Charlevoix Main Street announce installation of seven historical signs throughout the city of Charlevoix and grants awarded for the project. 

           The Charlevoix Historical Society and Charlevoix Main Street are pleased to announce a new attraction in the City of Charlevoix – seven signs with a total of 76 historic images which tell the story of the area’s illustrious history.   The signs were designed to have a similar appearance to the City’s way finding signs installed in early 2018.  They have been strategically placed in East Park, Bridge Park, on the Pine River Channel and at the Train Depot.  Each one shows what was going on from that vantage point, in most cases 75 to 125 years ago.   David Miles, Curator at the historical society, says, “The signs are intended to show and describe not only what was once on a site, but also how that site developed and evolved into the cityscape we enjoy today.  For instance, the East Park area began as two solid blocks of commercial buildings, while the Round Lake waterfront below them was nothing like the magnificent vista enjoyed by thousands today.   At first this waterfront was a thriving maritime hub; later, the majority of it decayed into a derelict mess during the Great Depression.  Now, the recent development of the park and expansion of the marina together have been honored as one of the best public spaces in the United States.  The history of all of this is illustrated on the new signage.”

            To fund the project, grants and sponsorships were awarded from the following:  Great Lakes Energy People Fund in the amount of $5,500, Charlevoix County Community Foundation a grant for $4,800, Rotary Club of Charlevoix provided $2,400, Todd and Pam Wyett gave $4,500 and the City of Charlevoix Downtown Development Authority allocated $1,000 in sponsorship.   Denise Fate, President of the Charlevoix Historical Society notes, “We are so thankful to each of our sponsors for making this possible.  The Historical Society is thrilled to partner with Charlevoix Main Street to bring the City’s history to the public in open spaces for all to enjoy at their leisure.”

            Together, the signs form a walking circuit through town.  A map of the locations has been put on the mobile app Life in Charlevoix in the Historic Tours section.    “Charlevoix has such an interesting history that makes this place even more beautiful. These signs help put that history out in public places for residents and visitors to experience whether they’re seeking it out or not. I hope the historic images and information provided evoke an even deeper love for this place and an appreciation of what makes Charlevoix so unique”, adds Lindsey Dotson, Charlevoix Main Street Executive Director.”

            The Historical Society has a significant collection of photographs and artifacts, maintains and preserves the Train Depot, Museum at Harsha House and South Pier Lighthouse, and mounts exhibits and programs each year.     

For more information on the Society, contact the Charlevoix Historical Society at 231-547-0373 or info@chxhistory.com. For more information about Charlevoix Main Street, contact Lindsey Dotson, 231-547-3257, or charlevoixmainstreet.org.

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