Mackinac Bridge Dedication June 28, 1958
Mackinaw City Parade

Photos from the 50th Anniversary Parade

50th Anniversary Celebration

50th anniversary of Mackinac Bridge groundbreaking

Building the Mackinac Bridge

Page 2

Bridget Paquet in the Mackinac Bridge dedication parade
Construction of the Mackinac Bridge began on May 7, 1954 and although construction continued into the last half of 1958, the bridge opened to traffic on November 1, 1957. The Mackinac Bridge Dedication Festival took 4 days in June of 1958. Although the celebration centered on the communities of St. Ignace and Mackinaw City, Michigan, there were also activities in Sault Ste Marie and Cheboygan. Among other activities, there was a release of a new Mackinac Bridge United States postage stamp, two nights of fireworks in both Mackinaw City & St. Ignace, a ribbon cutting ceremony on the bridge, and major parades in both St. Ignace & Mackinaw City.

The Oldsmobile Company provided 103 white convertibles, which were used to transport dignitaries, Miss Michigan, and other beauty queens, including queens representing each of Michigan's 83 counties.

The Straits of Mackinac was hit by high winds on June 26 which damaged several of the floats and flattened an army exhibit in Mackinaw City, but everything went smoothly on.

There were 140 units in each of the parades and all of those entries crossed the Mackinac Bridge between the events. There were color guards from the United States Army, Marines, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard and Civil Air Patrol. There were also many military vehicles and bands, including the 5th Army Band & Chrysler Imperial Highlanders - a bagpipe band which represented the Chrysler Corporation at special events around the United States.

The images on these pages are from slides taken by the late Lester Stokes.


The first few of the 103 white 1958 Oldsmobile Convertibles at the beginning of the parade along Mackinaw City's Central Avenue

Chrysler Highlanders in Mackinac Bridge dedication parade
Chrysler Highlanders pipe band

Mackinaw City High School Marching Band in parade
Mackinaw City High School Comets Marching Band

Mackinac Bridge parade float
Convertible carrying Bridget Paquet, who was born on May 7, 1954, the day of the ground breaking for the Mackinac Bridge -
for many years, the Mackinac Bridge float represented Mackinaw City at parades across Michigan

Mackinac Bridge dedication parade staging
Parade staging area on West Central Avenue

Detroit Mounted Police patrol in Mackinac Bridge dedication parade
Detroit Mounted Police patrol

Page 2 of Bridge Dedication photos

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images copyright 1958, scans copyright 2012 by Keith Stokes