Wexford County was named after a county in Ireland and populated
by Irish immigrants. Organized in 1869, development of this area was made
possible by the narrow guage railroad complete with Shay Locomotive, like the
one still sitting in Cadillac's City Park. With steam-[powered rotors geared for
high traction, this engine was the only way to move the lumber through the high
Today, Wexford County is an outdoorsmanís paradise. Approximately one-half of
it is still contained in either the Manistee National or Pere Marquette State
Forests. Like hiking? Just out for a stroll? Check out the walk along the lake
at Cadillac. Like canoeing?
Take the Pine River through
South Branch Township at Peterson Bridge or get on the mighty Manistee at Greenwood
Township'sís Baxter Bridge. Like swimming? Try the Hodenpyle Dam Pond,
Lake Mitchell, Lake Cadillac, or Pleasant Lake. You donít have to go far!( Not
to mention boating, camping or picnicking!). Golf? Itís been said if you walk
in a straight line long enough, youíll eventually end up on a green in Wexford
County! And donít forget winter, where skiing, snow-mobiling and ice fishing
"donít get no better!"
Most important, however, are the people of Wexford County: flexible enough to
change with the times but wise enough to preserve the best of the past. Take the
railroad for instance: one of the last of Michiganís own, the Tuscola &
Saginaw Bay, still operates a freight depot in Cadillac. Irish Heritage is alive
and well too - as in Manton,
where Irish Spring Days are celebrated every May and the old wooden fire barn on
Main Street still stands - painted green, of course!