This petition is driven by the community spirit that makes Michigan a great place to live. Our goal is to highlight Michigan's great history and cultural diversity.
For nearly 400 years the Great Lakes have been home to people of French heritage. Beginning in the early 17th century, French colonists arrived as explorers, missionairies, voyageurs, farmers, and merchants. In the ensuing decades, they worked together to build a common life as they journeyed with and married among the many Native American tribes who called the Great Lakes their home.
In later generations, another wave of French Canadian immigrants came for the timber industry, enriching the population of original habitants with a new spirit of cultural pride. In the 19th and 20th centuries, Michigan was home to over a dozen French-language newspapers. This is just a small part of a remarkable history of cultural survival.
Today, according to US Census data, an estimated 165,000 people in Michigan claim French Canadian heritage. With this petition we call upon the Governor of Michigan to recognize this unique Great Lakes culture by setting aside an annual day to celebrate the French Canadian heritage of Michigan.