Situated on the St. Clair River in the southeast part of Michigan, St. Clair was discovered way back in the 1760s when the British built a fort in the area on the south side of the Pine River. The British decided to position a fort there because they wanted to offer up protection for a shipping route that spanned from Detroit to Fort Michilimackinac. The fort was built by Col. Patrick Sinclair, and outside of offering protection for the shipping route, it also served as a trading post for those who lived around it.
While there are plenty of homes for sale in St. Clair, MI today, the city didn’t start to develop until the 1810s when Robert Fulton created St. Clair County and turned into an official settlement place. It didn’t experience much growth at first, but in 1826, a man named Thomas Palmer from Detroit bought St. Clair from Fulton and briefly changed its name to Palmer. The local sawmill industry flourished under his watchful eye thanks to the abundance of pine and oak in the area. Shipbuilding also helped propel St. Clair forward for most of the 1800s with many men in the area working as sailors on the Great Lakes.
Other industries saw success during the 1800s as well, with the Diamond Crystal Salt Company tapping into St. Clair’s vast salt deposits and luxury hotels popping up in the area towards the end of the century. St. Clair also started to evolve into one of the best recreational harbors in Michigan, a title it still holds today. Those who purchase real estate in St. Clair can take advantage of the harbors on the St. Clair River, which sits right at the mouth of the Pine River. Additionally, there are campgrounds located near the St. Clair Boat Harbor and plenty of places to eat and shop in the area.
The downtown area received a big boost in the 1960s when the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development stepped in and helped redevelop it. As part of this project, St. Clair expanded Palmer Park, which is situated next to the St. Clair River, and built a boardwalk that runs along the river. It currently draws visitors from across the state and is considered the crown jewel of the city.
Currently, St. Clair Township has more than 4,600 people living in it. It includes the Marysville and East China School Districts. While the population is still relatively small, it’s a wonderful place to live with so much nature and history to explore.
Wynne Achatz of Westrick Team can help you buy or sell real estate in St. Clair, MI. Call me at 810-765-8861 today to hear about the local real estate market or to check out homes for sale in St. Clair, MI.
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Information last updated on 2019-08-22.