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Bay City
Bay City is located in Michigan
Bay City
Location of Bay City, Michigan
Coordinates: 43°35′42.18″N 83°53′19.1″W / 43.59505°N 83.888639°W / 43.59505; -83.888639
Country United States
State Michigan
County Bay
Settled 1837
Incorporation 1865
Government
 - Type Commission-Manager
 - Mayor Charles M. Brunner
 - City Manager Robert V. Belleman
Area
 - City 11.3 sq mi (29.3 km2)
 - Land 10.4 sq mi (27.0 km2)
 - Water 0.9 sq mi (2.4 km2)
 - Urban 39.78 sq mi (103.034 km2)
Elevation 585 ft (178.3 m)
Population (2008)
 - City 36,817
 Density 3,537.1/sq mi (1,365.5/km2)
 - Estimate (2008) 33,874
 Urban 74,048
 Metro 108,390
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
 - Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP code 48706-48710
Area code(s) 989
FIPS code 26-06020[1]
GNIS feature ID 0620777[2]
Website http://www.baycitymi.org/
Historical populations
Census Pop.  %±
1950 52,523
1960 53,604 2.1%
1970 49,449 −7.8%
1980 41,593 −15.9%
1990 38,936 −6.4%
2000 36,817 −5.4%
Est. 2008 33,874 −8.0%

Bay City is a city in the U.S. state of Michigan located near the base of the Saginaw Bay on Lake Huron. As of the 2000 census, the city's population was 36,817, with the 2008 census estimate placing the population at 33,874[3]. It is the county seat of Bay County[4] and is the principal city of the Bay City Metropolitan Statistical Area, which is included in the Saginaw-Bay City-Saginaw Township North Combined Statistical Area. The city, along with nearby Midland and Saginaw, form the "Tri-Cities" region.

The city is geographically divided by the Saginaw River, and travel between the east and west sides of the city is made possible by four modern drawbridges which allow large ships to travel easily down the river. The city is served by MBS International Airport, located in nearby Freeland, and James Clements Municipal Airport.

Contents

History

Bay City was first established in 1837, and was incorporated as a city in 1865. In 1834 John B. Trudell built a log-cabin near the present corner of Seventeenth and Broadway. Trudell later purchased land that extended from his residence north along the river to what later became the location for the Industrial Brownhoist, making him the first permanent resident of what has become Bay County.[5] Bay City became the largest community in the county and the location of the county seat of government. Most of the county's agencies and associations are located here. The city shares common borders with Essexville and the townships of Bangor, Frankenlust, Hampton, Merritt, Monitor, and Portsmouth.

Bay City was originally known as "Lower Saginaw," and fell within the boundaries of Saginaw County until Bay County was organized in 1857. It was at this time that the name was changed to Bay City. While Saginaw had the first white settlement in this area in 1819, larger ships had difficulty navigating the shallower water near the Saginaw settlement. Due to this fact, many of the early pioneers moved to Lower Saginaw as it became clear its deeper waters made it a better location for the growth of industry which relied on shipping. By 1860, Lower Saginaw had become a bustling community of about 2,000 people with several mills and many small businesses in operation. In 1865, the village of Bay City was incorporated as a city. Rapid economic growth took place during this time period, with lumbering, milling, and shipbuilding creating many jobs. The early industrialists in the area used the Saginaw River as a convenient means to float lumber to the mills and factories and as a consequence amass large fortunes. Many of the mansions built during this era are registered as historical landmarks by the state and federal government.

In 1873, Charles C. Fitzhugh, Jr., a Bay City pioneer, and his wife, Jane, purchased land and built a home on property bounded by Washington, Saginaw, Ninth and Tenth Streets, which later became the location for City Hall. Fitzhugh dealt on a large scale in wild lands and farms, being an agent for over 25,000 acres (101 km²) of land in Bay County. During this time, Washington Avenue was primarily developed with residential homes. Businesses were concentrated along Water Street near the Saginaw River. As time went on, businesses started to expand along Washington Avenue. In 1891, the Fitzhugh's sold the land to the City of Bay City for $8,500 "to be used for the erection of a City Hall and offices and for no other purposes whatever."

Until 1905, the City of Bay City was limited to the east bank of the Saginaw River. Previous to that date, the city occupying the west bank of the Saginaw River was a separate city known as West Bay City. The unified Bay City celebrated its centennial in 2005.

During the latter half of the 19th century Bay City was the home of several now-closed industries including many sawmills and shipbuilders. The Defoe Shipbuilding Company, which ceased operations December 31, 1975 built destroyer escorts, guided missile destroyers, and patrol craft for the United States Navy. To maintain this strong Naval heritage, the Saginaw Valley Naval Ship Museum is working through the Naval Sea Systems Command to bring the USS Edson (DD-946) to Bay City as a museum ship; the Navy is expected to make a decision in the Spring of 2008. Another important part of the city's industrial history is Industrial Brownhoist, which was well-known for its construction of large industrial cranes.

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Notable events in city history

In September 1990, The tankship MV Jupiter was unloading gasoline at the Total Petroleum Terminal. A passing cargo ship, the Buffalo, moving at excessive speed, created a wake that caused the Jupiter to break free of its berth. A fire and explosion ensued, and one man drowned. There was considerable legal action taken, ultimately resulting in an adjudication that was subsequently appealed by the owners of the Buffalo. The findings of the Court of Appeals upheld the original decision, which assigned 50% of the responsibility to the Buffalo (for her excessive speed), 25% to the dock operator (for rotten wood pilings) and 25% to the Jupiter (for improper procedures in unloading her cargo).[6][7]

In January 2009, Bay City's wholly owned municipal power company, Bay City Electric Light and Power, installed a "limiter" device to restrict the receipt of power to the home of Marvin Schur, a 93-year-old customer who had failed to pay an outstanding bill in excess of $1,000. The Bay City Electric Light and Power policy was to install the limiter, and to notify the customer by trying to collect the amount due. City employees failed to knock on the door, and it was later found that Schur had a check already made out and had failed to mail it. Schur died from hypothermia in his home a few days later.[8] The day following his death, Bay City Electric Light and Power removed the limiters from all households. It was later learned that Schur had willed his estate, estimated by family to be in excess of $500,000, to Bay Regional Medical Center.[9]

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 11.3 square miles (29.3 km²), of which, 10.4 square miles (27.0 km²) of it is land and 0.9 square miles (2.4 km²) of it (8.12%) is water.

Bay City along with Saginaw, and Midland make up the Tri-Cities Area, a sub-region of Flint/Tri-Cities. Sometimes, Bay City can be seen as in the greater Thumb of Michigan Area, which is also a sub-region of the Flint/Tri-Cities.

Major highways

Bridges

Four modern bascule bridges allow transportation across the Saginaw River, which separates the East and West sides of Bay City. Lafayette Avenue Bridge, opened in 1938, carries Michigan Route M-13 and Michigan Route M-84 over the river. The Veterans Memorial Bridge, opened in 1957, carries Michigan Route M-25 over the river. Independence Bridge, opened in 1973, carries Truman Parkway over the river, replacing the earlier Belinda Street Bridge (built in 1893). Liberty Bridge, opened in 1990, connects Vermont Street (on the west side of the river) and Woodside Avenue (on the east side).

Demographics

As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 36,817 people, 15,208 households, and 9,322 families residing in the city. The population density was 3,537.1 per square mile (1,365.5/km²). There were 16,259 housing units at an average density of 1,562.0/sq mi (603.0/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 91.19% White, 2.72% Black, 0.74% Native American, 0.53% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 2.47% from other races, and 2.33% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 6.72% of the population.

There were 15,208 households out of which 30.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 42.4% were married couples living together, 14.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 38.7% were non-families. 32.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.38 and the average family size was 3.04.

In the city the population was spread out with 25.5% under the age of 18, 9.4% from 18 to 24, 30.5% from 25 to 44, 20.5% from 45 to 64, and 14.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 92.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 88.6 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $30,425, and the median income for a family was $38,252. Males had a median income of $32,094 versus $21,494 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,550. About 10.3% of families and 14.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 19.1% of those under age 18 and 10.5% of those age 65 or over.

Government

Bay City has a Commission-Manager form of government. The Mayor, who is elected to a four-year term, is the presiding officer of the City Commission and has the power to appoint some board and commission members, with the approval of the City Commission. The Mayor of Bay City is Charles M. Brunner, who has served in that capacity since the 2007 election. The City Commission has nine members, one from each of the city's nine wards. City Commissioners serve four-year terms. The terms of the Commissioners are staggered; the even-numbered wards are elected together (in years 1999, 2003, 2007, etc.), and the odd-numbered wards are elected together (in years 2001, 2005, 2009, etc.). City operations are managed by the City Manager, who is chosen by the City Commission.

Representatives

The City of Bay City is located in the following districts:

  • 5th U.S. Congressional District - Representative Dale Kildee (D)
  • 96th State House District - State Rep. Jeff Mayes (D)
  • 31st State Senate District – State Sen. Jim Barcia (D)

Culture

Bay City's Firework Festival - 2005

Bay City is well known in Mid-Michigan for its numerous festivals and celebrations which take place during the summer months. Among them are the River Roar, St. Stan's Polish Festival, the Independence Day Fireworks Festival, the Pig Gig Rib Roast, and the River of Time living history reenactment. Many of these events take place along one or more banks of the Saginaw River, often in Wenonah Park on the east bank or the larger Veterans Memorial Park on the west bank.

The Bay County Historical Museum, located on Washington Avenue, is the designated repository for the records of the Patrol Craft Sailors Association and also contains numerous displays on local and regional history. Over the past several years, the museum has expanded significantly. It is housed in the former armory building on Washington Avenue, adjacent to the historic City Hall.

The Bay County Library System includes two public libraries located in Bay City.

The Scottish band the Bay City Rollers were named after this city based on the results of a dart thrown randomly at a map.

The official Bay City flag is blue with a logo on it. It has been changed from the original design.[10]

Legend and folklore

It is the contention of many local residents that the fictional lumberjack, Paul Bunyan, was based on an infamous lumberjack Fabian "Saginaw Joe" Fournier, a lumberjack who frequented the Bay City waterfront.[11]

Education

The Sage library

Schools serving the Bay City area

Bay City Public Schools operates nine elementary schools, two middle schools, and three high schools.

Bangor Township Schools operates three elementary schools, one middle school, and one high school.

Essexville Hampton Public Schools operates three elementary schools, one junior high schools, and one high school.

Bay Area Catholic Schools operates four elementary schools, one middle school, and one high school.

Bay-Arenac Community High School operates a charter alternative secondary school.

  • Bay-Arenac Community High School

Mosaica Education Inc. operates a charter school, Bay County Public School Academy, serving grades kindergarten through 8th grade.

Colleges serving the Bay City area

Business districts

  • Banks Business District - Runs along Marquette Avenue from Ohio Street north to Harry S. Truman Parkway
  • Broadway Avenue Business District - Extending from Lafayette Avenue south to McGraw Avenue
  • Columbus Avenue Business District - From Washington Ave to Bay Medical Center Hospital
  • Downtown Bay City - Between Madison Avenue and the Saginaw River.[12]
  • Johnson Street Business District - From Center Ave to Woodside St.
  • Lafayette/Salzburg/Kosciuszko Business District - Extends along Salzburg east to Kosciuszko (Lafayette turns into Kosciuszko).
  • The ASci Corporation
  • The Midland Street Historic District - Located on the West side of the city near the banks of the river. Home to very popular bars in the city.
  • Industrial Districts - Morton Street, Harrison Street, Woodside Avenue, and the Marquette Industrial Center. Home to companies such as: General Motors Powertrain, SC Johnson & Son, Carbone of America/Ultra Carbon Division, Kerkau Manufacturing, Gougeon, and York Electric
  • Bay City Mall area (not located within the city limits, but in the adjoining township of Bangor Township) - Wilder Road at State Street Road. Includes Bay City Mall (JCPenney, Sears, Target, Younkers); other stores in area include Wal-Mart and The Home Depot
  • Water Street - home to Michigan's largest antique district

Sites of interest

Bay City, looking East from Veterans Memorial Park
  • Appledore Tall Ships[13]
  • The Arts Center/Studio 23[14]
  • State Theatre
  • Delta College Planetarium & Learning Center[15]
  • Bay County Civic Arena[16]
  • The Bay County Historical Museum[17]
  • Bay City State Recreation Area
  • Bay City's Antique Toy and Firetruck Museum[18]
  • Trombley House (oldest existing building in the county)[citation needed]
  • Center Avenue Historic District[citation needed]

Media

The city's main newspaper is the Bay City Times.

Bay City is also part of the Flint-Saginaw-Bay City television market, and the Saginaw-Bay City-Midland radio market.

Notable Bay City residents

  • Glenn Wichman - computer game designer.
  • Dennis Wirgowski, NFL Player 1970-1973 New England Patriots & Philadelphia Eagles[22]

Sister cities

Bay City has four sister cities, as designated by Sister Cities International:

References

  1. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. http://factfinder.census.gov. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  2. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. http://geonames.usgs.gov. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  3. ^ "Bay City Statistics". United States Census Bureau. http://factfinder.census.gov/servlet/SAFFPopulation?_event=Search&geo_id=16000US2653780&_geoContext=01000US. Retrieved 2009-08-03. 
  4. ^ [1]About Bay County
  5. ^ [Bay County Past and Present (Centennial Edition, 1957), p. 49]
  6. ^ http://www.ntsb.gov/Recs/letters/1991/M91_45.pdf
  7. ^ Gemini Calls on Riverside Park
  8. ^ http://www.wnem.com/news/18566890/detail.html#-
  9. ^ http://www.cnn.com/2009/US/02/04/freezing.death.folo/index.html
  10. ^ Flags of the World, Bay City, Michigan.
  11. ^ Ancestry.com - The Truth About Folk Heroes
  12. ^ http://downtownbaycity.com
  13. ^ http://www.baysailbaycity.org/
  14. ^ http://www.studio23baycity.org/
  15. ^ http://www.delta.edu/planet/
  16. ^ http://www.co.bay.mi.us/bay/home.nsf/Public/Bay_County_Civic_Arena.htm/
  17. ^ http://www.bchsmuseum.org/
  18. ^ http://www.antiquetoyandfirehousemuseum.org/
  19. ^ Halverson, Kathy (2001-05-05). "The List Murders Stun Westfield In 1971". The Westfield Leader (archived at goleader.com). http://www.goleader.com/list/. Retrieved 2006-06-01. 
  20. ^ (born in Bay City, grew up in Rochester, Michigan)"Singer of the Week: Madonna". AskMen.com (IGN Entertainment, Inc.). http://www.askmen.com/women/singer/5_madonna.html. Retrieved 2006-06-01. 
  21. ^ "Bay City native creates top-grossing video game", The Argus-Press, October 30, 1994, http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1988&dat=19941030&id=ez8iAAAAIBAJ&sjid=46wFAAAAIBAJ&pg=4038,5342976 
  22. ^ "All-Time Players". http://www.nfl.com/players/denniswirgowski/profile?id=WIR415291. Retrieved 21 February 2010. 

External links

Coordinates: 43°35′42″N 83°53′19″W / 43.59505°N 83.888639°W / 43.59505; -83.888639


Simple English

The American city of Bay City is a small city in the state of Michigan, United States. In the 2000 census it had more than 35,000 people living in it.

Although small, Bay City is one of the largest port cities on Lake Huron, one of the North American Great Lakes. It is part of a triangle of small cities in Central Michigan. The other two cities are Saginaw, Michigan, and Midland, Michigan.

Bay City was the birthplace in 1958 of Madonna Ciccone, a well-known American singer. The Scottish Pop group Bay City Rollers are said to have gotten their name from the city as well.

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