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Big Bay, Michigan is a small town in Powell Township, Marquette County, in the north-central portion of the Upper Peninsula. Although unincorporated, it is a census-designated place.

Parts of the Big Bay community is served by the Marquette post office, but Big Bay has its own post office, which serves a much larger area to the west and south.

The northern part of the town borders on Lake Superior, while it is bordered on the west, southwest, and east by Lake Independence.

The chief routes through the community are Big Bay Road, Dam Road, County Highway KA, County Highway KCB, County Highway KK, County Highway KT, County Road KF, County Road KH, and Squaw Beach Road. Big Bay Road forms the southwest and most of the western boundaries of the community, with County Roads KT and KCB forming the remainder of its western boundaries. Iron River forms its border to the southwest.

The City of Marquette is 27.2 miles to the southeast, and Ishpeming and Negaunee are south of Big Bay, although getting there from Big Bay requires traveling southeast to Marquette, as there are no direct routes. The unincorporated community of Alder is just over three miles away, on the southern banks of Lake Independence.

The lumber industry brought the first European-American settlers to the area in the 1870s, and a community has been formed by 1875, named for its location on Big Bay, of Lake Superior. A post office was established on February 10, 1902, with Andrew McAfee as its first postmaster.

Henry Ford and the Ford Motor Company purchased more than 300,000 acres of timberland around Big Bay in the 1930s, as well as a sawmill in Big Bay, the power plant, and nearly every other building in town. At one time, all of the wood paneling for the Ford line of automobiles was built in Big Bay.

The 1959 courtroom drama, Anatomy of a Murder was filmed at Big Bay, largely at the Thunder Bay Inn, the Big Bay Lighthouse Bed & Breakfast, the Perkins Park Campground, and the Lumberjack Tavern, which was the scene of the 1952 murder on which the film is based.

Bay Cliff Health Camp, a year-round, non-profit, wellness camp for adults and children with physical disabilities, is located at Big Bay.

The focus of this category is on the Big Bay community, and may include businesses, churches, schools, organizations, attractions, and events within the census-designated place.


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