Learn more about the lakeside city of Harrisville. Be sure to visit and add your story to many of the time honored traditions of this wonderful community.
Harrisville was first known as Davison's Mill after Crosier Davison, who in partnership with Simeon Holden, had purchased land and water power rights in this area in 1854. Benjamin Harris and his sons, Levi and Henry, of West Bloomfield, New York bought out the partners. A post office established on September 16, 1857 was named Harrisville, with Levi as the first postmaster. The Harris family sold out to Weston, (George L.) Colwell & Company, who had H.G. Rothwell plat the community in 1870. Harrisville was incorporated as a village in 1887 and as a city in 1905.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 0.61 square miles (1.58 km2), all land. It is considered to be part of Northern Michigan. The city is on the western shore of Lake Huron and has a harbor for recreational boaters. The harbor is a center for salmon and trout fishing. It is also a designated "Harbor of Refuge" on Lake Huron by the US Coast Guard.
The town also boasts Harrisville State Park, which includes a wooded campground along the beach.
Sturgeon Point Light Station, a lighthouse and museum, is a few miles to the north, and is open to the public. Harrisville is on the edge of Huron National Forest, which offers outdoor recreational opportunities such as hunting, swimming, cross-country skiing and trout fishing. The forest contains 330 miles (530 km) of hiking trails. The Huron and Manistee National Forests were separately designated, but were combined in 1945 for administrative purposes.
The Lake Huron beaches in and around Harrisville (including two state parks) have been recognized as being among the "top ten in Michigan." "Old-fashioned lake vacations abound on this pretty stretch of Lake Huron." Harrisville is situated along the Lake State Railway, formerly the Detroit and Mackinac Railway (D&M). The D&M passenger depot is made of stone, which makes it one of two along the railway (the other being in Standish). It is privately maintained by local citizens as part of the municipality's historical legacy.
As of the census of 2000, there were 514 people, 239 households, and 131 families residing in the city. The population density was 831.2 per square mile (320.1/km²). There were 327 housing units at an average density of 528.8 per square mile (203.6/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 94.94% White, 2.14% African American, 0.39% Native American, 0.97% Asian, and 1.56% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.97% of the population.
There were 239 households out of which 18.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 44.4% were married couples living together, 8.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 44.8% were non-families. 41.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 22.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 1.92 and the average family size was 2.57.
In the city, the population was spread out with 16.0% under the age of 18, 7.4% from 18 to 24, 21.6% from 25 to 44, 25.9% from 45 to 64, and 29.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 48 years. For every 100 females there were 96.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.7 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $27,500, and the median income for a family was $34,286. Males had a median income of $23,625 versus $21,875 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,983. About 9.3% of families and 13.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 20.8% of those under age 18 and 6.5% of those age 65 or over.
US 23, north of Standish, it has been designated the Sunrise Side Coastal Highway, and runs along the Lake Huron shoreline. US 23 is the most proximate connector to I-75, to which it connects in Standish, about 75 miles (121 km) to the south. About 135 miles (217 km) to the north is Mackinaw City and the Mackinac Bridge and the north end of the lower peninsula's I-75.
M-72 In 1936, downtown Harrisville became the eastern terminus of the 133-mile (214 km) M-72, which runs across the lower peninsula from Empire. It is one of three true cross-peninsular highways.
Harrisville City Airport is 2200 feet (671 m) in length; it is located on Walker Road.
Alpena County Regional Airport in partnership with SkyWest Airlines operating as a Delta connection offers daily flights to Detroit with unlimited destinations. Fly from Alpena and enjoy free parking, shorter check in times and convenient, affordable service.