Welcome to Onaway, Michigan
"Sturgeon Capitol of Michigan"
Onaway, Michigan is located at the western edge of beautiful Presque Isle County at the junction of M-68 and M-33. Onaway offers Northern Michigan business opportunites through tax free renaissance zones, a variety of outdoor recreational activities and is a great place to raise a family.
The Onaway area was first settled in the 1880ís by Thomas Shaw and Merritt Chandler. Chandler was the first to plat the land, naming the town from a stanza in Longfellow's "The Song of Hiawatha" (click here to read). It is an Ojibwa Indian cry meaning 'Alert' or 'Awaken'. This town grew during the lumber era and was incorporated as a village in 1899, and as a city in 1903. Shortly after that, Merritt built a courthouse on the western edge of town intending to attract the county government to locate there. It never happened. After hosting the local historical society and after years of neglect, through a community effort and state and federal grants, the old courthouse has now been restored to its original grandeur. Now the building contains the city offices, the Chamber of Commerce and the Onaway Branch of the Presque Isle District Library. In July of 2008, the courthouse became home to the Onaway Historical Museum.
Onaway today has retained its small town atmosphere, with the local economy supported by several small manufacturing facilities and tourism. Winter sports are popular, as well as fishing, including Black Lake, historically known as a source for sturgeon, now a dwindling species; making Onaway famous as the "Sturgeon Capital of Michigan". Black Lake also contains populations of perch, walleye, and several species of bass. The Onaway area hosts the annual Black Lake Sturgeon Shivaree, in February of each year on nearby Black Lake.
With a new state-of-the art sewage system, Industrial Park, airport, and Renaissance Zone tax free business properties, Onaway's future looks as bright as it was at its zenith during the long ago lumber years.
Please come and visit us and see why we proudly say
"Onaway, Year around fun, Year around opportunities"
City Hall Office Hours:
M-F 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Closed Noon-1:00 p.m.
20774 State Street
P.O. Box 761
Onaway, Mi 49765
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