MICHIGAN (mishri-gan), known as the "Wolverine State," is one of the north central group of the United States of America. It is situated between latitudes 41° 44' and 30' N. and longi tudes 82° 25' and 9o° 31' W., and consists of two peninsulas,— the upper or northern and the lower or southern—separated by a strait. The upper peninsula is bounded north by Lake Superior; east by lakes Superior, Huron and Michigan, and by Whitefish bay and St. Mary's river, which separate it from the Province of Ontario, Canada; south by lakes Huron and Michigan and the straits of Mackinac, which separate it from the lower peninsula; and south-west and west by Wisconsin, and the Menominee, Brule and Montreal rivers, which separate it from Wisconsin. The lower peninsula is bounded north by lakes Michigan and Huron and the straits of Mackinac, east by lakes Huron, St. Clair and Erie and the St. Clair and Detroit rivers, which separate it from Ontario ; south by Ohio and Indiana, and west by Lake Michigan. In size Michi gan ranks 21st among the States of the Union, its total area being 57,98o sq.m. of which Soo sq.m. exclusive of its Great Lakes jurisdiction, are water surface.
Huron to the south-east shore of Saginaw bay a wide sandy beach is followed northward by precipitous shores abounding in rocks and bluffs. West of the divide and south of the depression, south west Michigan is occupied by the valleys of the St. Joseph, Kala mazoo and Grand rivers, by the gently rolling uplands that form the parting divides between them, and by sand dunes, which here and there rise to a height of from 10o to zoo ft. or more along the shore of Lake Michigan, and are formed on this side (but not on the Wisconsin side) of the lake by the prevailing west winds.
The surface of the upper peninsula is more irregular than that of the lower peninsula. A portion extending through the middle from east to west and south, from west of the centre of Green bay, is either flat and even swampy or only gently undulating. Eastward from Green bay are two ranges of hills; the one lining the south shore and ranging from ioo to 30o ft. in height, the other close to or touching the north shore and reaching in places an elevation of 600 ft. above Lake Superior. The famous Pictured rocks in Alger county on the lake shore, east of Munising, form the west portion of this north range ; they display a wide diversity of shapes as well as a great variety of tints and hues, especially of grey, blue, green and yellow. The most rugged portion of the State is farther west. South and south-east of Keweenaw bay, in the Marquette iron district, is an irregular area of mountains, hills, swamps and lakes, some of the mountain peaks of the Huron moun tains (in Marquette county) rising to an elevation of 1,400 ft. or more above the lake. These and a peak in the Porcupine moun tains (2,023 ft. above the sea) in the north-west part of Ontona gon county are the highest in the State. To the south of this is the Menominee iron district, marked somewhat regularly by east and west ridges. Extending in a general north-east and south-west direction through Keweenaw peninsula to the Wisconsin border, and beyond, is the middle of three approximately parallel ranges, separated from each other by flat lands, with here and there an isolated peak (in the Porcupine mountains) having an elevation of from goo to 1,400 ft. above the lake. The northern portion of these ranges, together with Isle Royale some distance farther north, which is itself traversed by several less elevated parallel ridges, contains the Michigan copper-bearing rocks; while to the south, along the Wisconsin border, is the Gogebic iron district.