Happy 175th Birthday, Michigan

LANSING — State Sen. John Proos on Thursday honored Michigan’s 175th birthday as the Great Lakes State.

“After more than 30 years as a territory, Michigan was admitted into the Union as the 26th state on January 26, 1837,” said Proos, R-St. Joseph. “In the 175 years since, Michigan has grown into the beautiful, diverse and extraordinary place we call home. I encourage all Southwest Michigan families to celebrate this milestone by learning more about the rich history of our great state or getting out and enjoying the natural resources that helped found and define Michigan.”

Michigan first attempted to earn statehood in 1835, but a dispute over the city of Toledo caused a two-year delay. President Andrew Jackson signed the bill that admitted Michigan into the Union after a compromise was reached that allowed Ohio to keep Toledo in exchange for the western two-thirds of the Upper Peninsula.

“Out of a struggle, our state emerged stronger,” Proos said. “Michiganians facing a challenge, and – through innovation and self-determination – turning that challenge into a positive is a repeating theme throughout our history and continues today. Our state has moved from an agrarian society to a diverse, global economic powerhouse with renowned agriculture and manufacturing industries and growing high-tech and tourism sectors. The story of how we made that change is long and inspirational.”

Gov. Rick Snyder proclaimed Jan. 26 as Michigan Statehood Day, stating that we continue to celebrate the spirit of innovation and reinvention, and encouraging all Michigan citizens to reflect on the successes and challenges, discoveries and inventions, values and wisdom of those who came before us.

“To help Southwest Michigan families and children learn about our state, educational booklets are available for free from my office or may be downloaded from my website,” Proos said.

Portraits of Michigan: History and Facts on Michigan is offered for teachers, parents and older children. It presents historical figures and facts in an educational format, including maps and quizzes. For younger kids, Getting to Know Michigan: A Coloring Book is available.

To order one of the publications, contact Proos’ office at 517-373-6960 or by email at senjproos@senate.michigan.gov. Both items may also be downloaded from Proos’ Senate website at: www.SenatorJohnProos.com. Click on “Publications.”