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Bay Mills History Department

Paula Carrick, Historian

Located in the Armella Parker Building on Lakeshore Drive

Please call 906-248-8759 or email:

Fax 906-248-2258


Paula Carrick of the Bay Mills Indian Community began working for Bay Mills Indian Community's History Department in 1998.  Originally she worked with a committee developed to aid Dr. Charles Cleland of Michigan State University in his research for a book of Bay Mills Lake Superior Ojibwe history.  The History Department was created as a result of all the full time research.

The committee originally consisted of 12 members actively involved in researching old photos, documents and interviewing elders.  The committee now consists of 7 members.

It is the mission of the Bay Mills History Committee and Department to protect, manage and preserve our culture, history and traditions for present and future generations.  This includes all cultural, historical, and archaeological resources, as well as objects, places, knowledge, traditions, practices and beliefs.

The History Department is located at 12485 W. Lakeshore Dr. in the Armella Parker Elder building. Hours are Monday through Friday 8 to 4:30.  




The book, “The Place of the Pike (Gnoozhekaaning)," is a History of the Bay Mills Indian Community. Gnoozhekaaning is the traditional name given to the area by the local Ojibwe.  The book has been published by the University of Michigan Press and has been available since the spring of 2001.

The book is available at the Bay Mills History Department.  The cost to Bay Mills members is $15 and non members $20.


Current and Future Projects 

  • Work to acquire a place to display artifacts donated to us

  • Update and display Executive Councils at Bay Mills Resort and Casino

  • Collect, identify and share our ongoing collection of 10,000+ photos

  • Continue to collect and archive old documents

  • Continue to update our extensive genealogy 

  • Continue to publish newspaper articles in the Bay Mills News

  • Continue to create place mats for the elder food program

  •  Continue to display old photos around the community such as Sacy’s Restaurant, Bay Mills Resort, Bay Mills Human Resource Department,  Ellen Marshall Building, Bay Mills Tribal Offices, Seniors Building, etc.

  • Continue researching photos and information for our Veteran’s file

  •  Upkeep of the Old Indian Burial Ground/tombstone repair

  • Maintain Wadjiwong, the Ancient Burial Ground at Brady Park in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.

In the News: 



In 2010 Paula Carrick became the Tribal Historic Preservation Officer for Bay Mills Indian Community.  The National Historic Preservation Act allows federally recognized tribes to assume some or all of the State’s historic preservation duties.  As  the Tribal Historic Preservation Officer, Bay Mills History Dept. assumes that responsibility for our tribal lands.  

Also, as THPO Carrick assumes Section 106 responsibilities.  This gives the History Department the authority to respond to requests from state and federal undertakings from around the country as to any potential impact a project may have on tribal historic properties on or off tribal lands.   On an average they process 1,500 such requests annually.




  •      Assist tribal enrollment and members with ancestral research

  •      Preserve historical items pertinent to our tribe and surrounding area

  •      Update  veterans information for  all tribal members who serve

  •      Make historical presentations about BMIC history

  •      Consult with federal and state agencies as THPO officers

  •      Protect, manage and preserve cultural properties



On November 4, 1936, as a result of the Indian reorganization Act (IRA) of 1934, the Bay Mills Indian Community representing 5 of the original six Sault Ste. Marie Bands of Chippewa Indians, adopted a constitution and by-laws.  With reorganization, tribes agreed to abandon their traditional forms of clan governments. 

On March 6, 1937 we held our first tribal election. Those elected were Herman Cameron President, Lucy LeBlanc Vice-President, John Cameron Secretary, Arthur W. LeBlanc Treasurer and Clinton D. Marshall Councilman.


Five weeks later Herman Cameron resigned to work for the Bureau of Indian Affairs on the Fort Berthold Reservation in North Dakota, leaving Lucy LeBlanc as the President.  She then became the first woman President of a tribe in Michigan and possibly the country.                    

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