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The founders of Mackinaw City opted for the phonetic "aw" spelling, probably as a way to distinguish their town from Mackinac Island for confused postal carriers.
Today Mackinaw City retains the "aw" spelling while the bridge, straits and island steadfastly cling to the "ac" spelling.
Each cable consists of 340 wires banded into a single strand; 37 strands are then assembled into a single cable.
The first step was to sink the large, double-walled cylinders that form the bases of the two main tower piers. The caissons had to be sunk down into the bedrock on the lake floor, a great challenge for the divers involved. A "catwalk" made of cyclone fence enabled the workers to navigate between the bridge towers, high above the lake below.
When the foundation pillars were finished, the iron workers were brought in to string the massive cabling network! When finished, the cables were close to 25 inches in diameter.
It held the record as the longest suspension bridge in the world for half a century!
Before the Mackinac Bridge was constructed, travelers between Michigan's upper and lower peninsulas had to cross the Straits via an hour-long ferry ride. Today, the Mackinac Bridge is hailed as one of the most outstanding engineering achievements of the century and leaves people wondering how Michigan ever got along without it!
The total cost of the project was upwards of 0 million (originally estimated at million).
No matter how it is spelled, however, it is always pronounced Mackinaw! ) above the Straits of Mackinac, where Lakes Michigan and Huron meet, is the world-famous Mackinac Bridge.Also known as the "Mighty Mac," this engineering marvel is 5 miles long anchor block to anchor block.The name Michilimackinac, the place of the "Great Turtle", was first given to Mackinac Island for its shape and was eventually given to the entire Straits of Mackinac region.In time, certainly by the 1820s, it was shortened to simply Mackinac.On busy weekends, like the start of hunting season or the Fourth of July holiday, carloads of anxious travelers would wait in line as long as 24 hours to catch a ferry. Steinman and primary construction firms were Merrit-Chapman & Scott and the American Bridge Division of U. The 100 millionth crossing of the bridge happened on June 25, 1998.
Although the bridge was envisioned way back in the late 1800s, Sen. Brown, Sr., the "Father of the Mackinac Bridge," was the key figure in the bridge construction project. Mennen (Soapie) Williams was another strong advocate for the bridge and helped to create the Mackinac Bridge Authority in 1950. Because the bridge was in a remote area, financing the project was slow and difficult.