Midland Street Commercial District

Registered Site L1927

Midland Street Commercial District

The Midland Street Commercial District comprises fifty buildings in a four block area that was the business hub of West Bay City. Prior to 1830 the area was occupied by Sauk and Chippewa Indians. In response to depleted eastern timberlands resulting from western expansion, New York lumberman Henry Sage and his partner Henry McGraw built a sawmill on the west bank of the Saginaw River in 1863. Wenona, the town that developed around the mill, was incorporated as Bay City in 1877. By 1867 plank roads were built, telegraph lines were installed. the Third Street Bridge was erected, and Wenona had become a terminus for both passenger and freight railroads. Midland Street soon housed the offices of many industries including salt, lumber, fishing and shipbuilding.
photo of Midland Street Commercial District

Side 2

In 1867 Major Newcomb Clark built the first commercial structure on Midland Street in Wenona, later West Bay City. Clark was Wenona's first village president and became the speaker of the Michigan House of Representatives in 1885. The development that followed this initial construction project resulted in a collection of commercial buildings, dating from 1867 to 1929, on what became a major business corridor. Queen Anne, Romanesque, Georgian Revival, Art Deco and Chicago style buildings reflect architectural trends over a sixty-year period. By 1905 the local lumber industry declined and West Bay City and Bay City incorporated as one municipality. This well-preserved district is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

Erected 1995

Location: 500-800 Blocks Midland Street
Bay City, Bay County

Commercial Buildings

Latitude: 43.6018145, Longitude: -83.8990581

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