A Canal Joining Lake Superior & Lake Michigan A Failed Piece of Michigan history
There have been some arduous plans involving the idea to link two lakes together in Michigan, none more so than the plan to try and connect Lake St. Clair with Lake Michigan by way of the The Clinton–Kalamazoo Canal. It was supposed to begin in Mount Clemens on the banks of the Clinton River and continue through Utica, Rochester, Pontiac, Howell, Hastings, and finally to the mouth of the Kalamazoo River, which would have been roughly 216 miles.
That plan however was scrapped, and remnants of it can still be seen today, unlike the canal plan which was dreamt up in the 1800's which never ended up taking place, although proposals were delivered multiple times for around 100 years. The canal was intended to connect Lake Michigan with Lake Superior in the Upper Peninsula. But how was it going to happen and why did it ultimately fail to take shape?
How To Connect the Two
Originally the completed canal would have started in the Ai Train River just outside of Marquette, and follow the river to Little Bay DeNoquet at Gladstone. The original proposal claimed the canal would have been much smaller than the Clinton-Kalamazoo canal at only 36 miles long, but would have apparently saved 271 miles between Chicago, Duluth and other major cities on the coast.
Why It Failed
One Michigan resident lent his thoughts on the most logical reason why this canal was never even attempted:
The roiue[sic] would have needed 2 or 3 locks because Lake Superior is about 23 feet higher than Lake Michigan. The route probably would have required a good deal of rock excavation. The proposal to build a canal along this route last resurfaced in the 1980s. It was found to be economically unfeasible.
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