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Benton Harbor, Michigan - 49022


Benton Harbor, Michigan

Benton Harbor, Michigan


Benton Harbor was originally know as Brunson Harbor. In 1863 the name was given in honor of Sterne Brunson, one of the first founders of the area along with Henry Morton and Charles Hull. The three were instrumental in creating a market for the farmers from the area now known as St. Joseph, on the east side of the St. Joseph River. The three men were the driving force behind the creation of a mile-long ship canal linking the St. Joseph River to the bluffs of Brunson Harbor. The settlement prospered and was incorporated as a village in 1866. In 1865 the settlement's name was changed to Benton Harbor in honor of Thomas Hart Benton. Mr. Benton was the Missouri senator who helped Michigan's plea for statehood. Benton Harbor was incorporated as a city in 1891. Bungtown, Flea Town and Sand Town were some of the original nicknames given to the community. Bungtown was the name that stuck because of the settlement's first factory. The factory made the wooden corks for barrels called bungs.

In 1986, Benton Harbor was designated as an Enterprise Zone in order to encourage business activity. The Enterprise Zone offers tax abatements and exemptions for commercial and industrial entrepreneurs. Benton Harbor has exquisitely developed the St. Joseph River waterfront as well as other areas to encourage the growth of the area. Benton Harbor offers the convenience of being located just off I-94 between Chicago and Detroit. The port city of Benton Harbor extends miles of Lake Michigan's soft sandy shoreline for your enjoyment.. The St. Joseph River also offers miles of scenic shoreline for fishing, boating or just relaxing.

Benton Harbor, Michigan



Photos courtesy of: Ken Huisjen


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