LANSING — Early this morning, the Michigan House of Representatives approved House Resolution 472, introduced by state Rep. Sara Cambensy (D-Marquette), to declare December 14, 2018, as Frostbitten Convention Day, to recognize the landmark agreement that granted the western Upper Peninsula to Michigan and set in motion the bid for statehood.
“The Upper Peninsula has been an unbelievable historical boon to the people of Michigan by providing no shortage of thriving tourism, recreational, timber and mining opportunities,” said Cambensy. “Not only does Michigan owe much of its economic success to contributions from the U.P. over these last 182 years, but our very statehood is based on its inclusion at the Frostbitten Convention. With no offense to the people of Ohio, anyone that has either lived in or visited the U.P. can tell you that we came out of the convention on top.”
The Frostbitten Convention gathered on a bitterly cold day in Ann Arbor in 1836 to end the costly Toledo War which had begun the previous year over fierce disputes over the eponymous “Toledo Strip” between the state of Ohio and the territory of Michigan.
In order to prevent bloodshed, President Andrew Jackson offered a compromise that would grant Michigan statehood and the territory now known as the western Upper Peninsula in exchange for giving control of the “Toledo Strip” to Ohio. On December 14, 1836, delegates at the Frostbitten Convention voted to accept the compromise and on January 26, 1837, Michigan was officially admitted as the 26th state to the Union.