Happy Birthday, Michigan!

A three-story topographic map of the state greets visitors to the Michigan History Museum

Head to Lansing for the Statehood Day Celebration on Saturday, January 27 in honor of the 181st anniversary of Michigan joining the Union.

It was on January 26, 1837 that President Andrew Jackson granted Michigan statehood, adding the 26th star to Old Glory. But the designation didn’t come easy, thanks to a struggle over a strip of land along the Ohio border.

Wear your party hat to the Michigan History Museum on Saturday

The Toledo War was resolved with the disputed ground going to Ohio and Michigan receiving the Upper Peninsula as a sort of consolation prize (click here for more on that story). Detroit served as Michigan’s capital from 1837 to 1847 when that designation went to Lansing.

Saturday’s birthday party at the Michigan History Museum will run from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and include cake, music and games. Throughout the day you can try out “book-making” (I assume that’s the paper, not race track variety), tap toes to olde tyme tunes by Acoustic Strings, and join in the Statehood Day Euchre Tournament, a nod to the card game (aka uker or juker) that was popular back then.

Museum admission is free on Saturday, so seize the opportunity to check out the galleries to time travel through Michigan’s past.

If you can’t make it for the birthday bash, the Michigan History Museum is open seven days; admission and parking is free on Sunday. Otherwise, it’s $6 adults, $4 seniors, $2 kids ages 6-17, 5 and under free. If you have the state’s Recreational Passport, ask about the discounted museum admission.

This salute to Michigan’s car culture at the state’s historical museum in Lansing is part of the MotorCities National Heritage Area


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