Fort Sinclair Part 1

St. Clair, Michigan has been claimed by many different groups of people, and has gone through many changes, before becoming the city it is now. In the beginning, Native Americans of the Iroquois, Chippewa and Pottawatomi tribes first inhabited St. Clair Michigan. They enjoyed the area because easy access to the St. Clair River (formerly called River Huron), and the Pine River, provided them with a way to travel. Out of the Europeans, the French were the first so explore St. Clair. In fact, Adrian Jolliet was the first European explorer to venture down the St. Clair River in a canoe. The French originally claimed this region as their territory. However, at the end of the French and Indian War in 1763, the French were forced to cede all of their territories over to the British (“History of St. Clair County”).

The French and Indian War, most notably Pontiac’s Rebellion, caused the relationship between the British and the Native Americans to become extremely unstable (“History of St. Clair County”). Due to this tension, the Native Americans were constantly attacking British canoes and ships that were transporting furs and supplies between Fort Detroit and Fort Michilimackinac (Jenks). These attacks needed to be stopped and it was up to Fort Detroit’s British commander John Bradstreet to come up with a solution. He decided that there should be a new fort built on the St. Clair River to put pressure on the Native Americans and to secure the safety of the British cargo (Homberg).

(Picture of freighter originally published on: