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In 1807 a treaty was signed deeding the Thumb of Michigan to the United States Government. 

In about 1830, lumbermen came to the area to peel bark from Hemlock trees to use in tanning leather. They built a shanty to live in the current Port Sanilac area and covered it with bark. This shanty became a landmark to sailors on Lake Huron and they called the place Bark Shanty Point.

Sanilac Township was organized in April 1848, and Sanilac County in January 1850.


A post office was established at the point in December 1854 and the name was shortened to Bark Shanty.

In August 1857 the village was renamed Port Sanilac.

A circuit-riding preacher was instrumental in forming the Methodist-Episcopal Church in Port Sanilac in 1850. Residents built a school in 1852, and also used it for worship until the first church building was built on the present site in 1866.

Uri Raymond established Raymond Hardware in 1850. The business district was moved to Ridge Street from Lake Street between 1865 and 1885.

Docks were built in 1857 and shipping and passenger service continued until the docks were destroyed in the great storm of November 13, 1913.


The U.S. Congress appropriated $20,000 for the construction of The Port Sanilac Lighthouse in 1884. It was lighted for the first time in October 1886.

With a population of less than 700, the Village Of Port Sanilac is a sesquicentennial treasure just waiting to be discovered.

Today, in the heart of the East Ports, Port Sanilac is a great place to bask in the sun, swim, sail, boat, fish, dive, backpack, golf, or camp out along the lake; making it like no other place else in Michigan.

Visiting or moving here will allow you to experience the sweet easy flowing days, in quiet, cozy, quaint, Port Sanilac, Michigan, on the United States side of Lake Huron. And while here you’ll be able to reflect & meditate & contemplate in order to revitalize, rejuvenate, regenerate or and/or restore your well-being.

Port Sanilac is a magical place where you can either relax or enjoy a plethora of activities all just a stone’s throw away from Lake Huron.

Driving to Port Sanilac, you have two routes you can take. One route takes you on a scenic drive along Lake Huron through several small towns along M-25. The other route takes you through several small towns primarily viewing the beautiful and peaceful countryside all the way, via M-46.

Once in Port Sanilac, the scenery includes miles of sandy beach, restaurants that offer a variety of food and drink, places to stay including campsites, and cabins for rent located right on the beach. There are a variety of places to stay in and near Port Sanilac. Most have a short walk to the beach… some are equipped with a swimming pool, kitchen, satellite TV, Internet, air-conditioning, screened-in porches, on-site laundry facilities. They are also kept very clean and well maintained.

The downtown area has a lot of great things going on, and charm. While walking down main street you can catch a few whiffs of some great smelling food from the nearby restaurants. Some of those restaurants include The Stone Lodge and The View at Uri's Landing.


In the summer, the weather is warm and pleasant from May to October. Come enjoy the peace and quiet of the area without having to worry about the time. Catch up on all that reading that you’ve have been neglecting and enjoy the scenery that beautiful Lake Huron offers.

Port Sanilac is also well known for their festivals and music events that happen throughout the summer.

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