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St. Ignace, Michigan facts for kids

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St. Ignace, Michigan
City of St. Ignace
Downtown St. Ignace along BL I-75 in 2011
Downtown St. Ignace along BL I-75 in 2011
Gateway to Michigan's Upper Peninsula
Location within Mackinac County
Location within Mackinac County
St. Ignace, Michigan is located in Michigan
St. Ignace, Michigan
St. Ignace, Michigan
Location in Michigan
St. Ignace, Michigan is located in the United States
St. Ignace, Michigan
St. Ignace, Michigan
Location in the United States
Country United States
State Michigan
County Mackinac
Settled 1671; 352 years ago (1671) (St. Ignace Mission)
Incorporated February 23, 1882; 141 years ago (1882-02-23) (village)
Incorporated 1883; 140 years ago (1883) (city)
 • Type Mayor–council
 • Total 2.65 sq mi (6.86 km2)
 • Land 2.64 sq mi (6.83 km2)
 • Water 0.01 sq mi (0.03 km2)
587 ft (179 m)
 • Total 2,452
 • Estimate 
 • Density 880.59/sq mi (340.05/km2)
Time zone UTC-5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP code(s)
Area code(s) 906
FIPS code 26-70840
GNIS ID 1621477

St. Ignace is a city in the U.S. state of Michigan and the county seat of Mackinac County. The city had a population of 2,452 at the 2010 census. St. Ignace Township is located just to the north of the city, but the two are administered autonomously.

St. Ignace is located along Lake Huron in the Upper Peninsula on the northern side of the Straits of Mackinac. St. Ignace serves as a gateway to the state's Upper Peninsula for travellers coming from the Lower Peninsula, as the city is at the north end of the Mackinac Bridge, opposite of Mackinaw City. It has one of two ports which provide ferry service to nearby Mackinac Island. St. Ignace's history dates back to 1671 when French Jesuit priests founded the St. Ignace Mission, which makes it one of the oldest European settlements in the state after Sault Ste. Marie. The area was previously inhabited by the Wyandot, as well as the Ojibwe and Ottawa tribes of Native Americans. St. Ignace soon became the center of fur trading with the French. It was incorporated as a village in 1882 and a city in 1883. The Mackinac Bands of Chippewa and Ottawa Indians is headquartered at St. Ignace, and the city continues to have a high population of Native Americans.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1880 934
1890 2,704 189.5%
1900 2,271 −16.0%
1910 2,118 −6.7%
1920 1,852 −12.6%
1930 2,109 13.9%
1940 2,669 26.6%
1950 2,946 10.4%
1960 3,334 13.2%
1970 2,892 −13.3%
1980 2,632 −9.0%
1990 2,568 −2.4%
2000 2,678 4.3%
2010 2,452 −8.4%
2019 (est.) 2,323 −5.3%
U.S. Decennial Census
Municipal Building

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 2,452 people, 1,064 households, and 633 families residing in the city. The population density was 914.9 inhabitants per square mile (353.2/km2). There were 1,299 housing units at an average density of 484.7 per square mile (187.1/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 63.4% White, 1.0% African American, 27.8% Native American, 0.3% Asian, 0.2% from other races, and 7.3% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.1% of the population.

There were 1,064 households, of which 27.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.3% were married couples living together, 11.1% had a female householder with no husband present, 5.1% had a male householder with no wife present, and 40.5% were non-families. 33.8% of all households were made up of individuals, and 13.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.24 and the average family size was 2.84.

The median age in the city was 44.5 years. 21.3% of residents were under the age of 18; 7.7% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 21.6% were from 25 to 44; 31.6% were from 45 to 64; and 17.7% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 48.2% male and 51.8% female.


Mackinac Bridge from the air4
Mackinac Bridge, Mackinaw City to St. Ignace

Major highways

  • I-75 crosses over the Mackinac Bridge and through St. Ignace. Southbound I-75 takes drivers to the Lower Peninsula; northbound the freeway heads toward Sault Ste. Marie and Canada.
  • BL I-75 follows the route of old US 2.
  • US 2 ends in St. Ignace at I-75. Westbound, US 2 traverses a scenic stretch along Lake Michigan, toward Manistique and Escanaba.
  • H-63 (Mackinac Trail) is a north–south route traveling along the former route of US 2 from just north of St. Ignace to Sault Ste. Marie.

Ferry services

Two ferry companies (Shepler's Ferry and Star Line Ferry) operate out of Saint Ignace, connecting tourists and commuters to Mackinac Island.


The nearest airports with scheduled passenger service are in Chippewa County International Airport in Kinross (northeast of St. Ignace, adjacent to I-75) and Pellston Regional Airport in the Lower Peninsula.

Bus service

Indian Trails provides daily intercity bus service between St. Ignace and East Lansing, Michigan, between St. Ignace and Bay City, Michigan, and between St. Ignace and Ironwood, Michigan.

Notable people

  • Prentiss M. Brown, U.S. Senator from Michigan
  • Aubrey Fitch, Vice Admiral USN
  • Nicholas Orontony, 18th-century Wyandot leader
  • Joe Ostman, professional football player
  • Les Sweetland, professional baseball pitcher

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