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Montague is a city in Muskegon Countymarker in the U.S. state of Michiganmarker. As of the 2000 census, the city had a total population of 2,407. The city is located within Montague Townshipmarker, but is politically independent.

The Montague ZIP code 49437 also serves all of Montague Township and White River Townshipmarker, as well as a small portions of Whitehall Townshipmarker and Blue Lake Townshipmarker in Muskegon County and parts of Claybanks Townshipmarker and Grant Townshipmarker in Oceana Countymarker.

History and culture

Noah Ferry, who named the city in honor of his father, William Montague Ferry, founded the city. William Ferry founded the cities of Grand Havenmarker and Ferrysburgmarker in neighboring Ottawa Countymarker. Ferry Church, built in 1874, is named in honor of Noah Ferry, who died fighting for the Union at the Battle of Gettysburgmarker in 1863.

At one time, Ferry Street also named for the founder, was the main street through town. It was named for him because the city's post office operated on that street since its establishment in 1867, and Ferry was instrumental in getting a post office in the city. Although city hall, the city’s new post office (constructed in 2005), and a handful of businesses still operate on Ferry, Dowling Street has become the city's main fairway because of its eventual connection to neighboring communities and U.S. Highway 31.

Montague is home to the "World's Largest Working Weathervane" which was constructed in part by local manufacturer Whitehall Metal Studios. The weathervane is topped by the Ella Ellenwood, a lumbering Schooner that frequented White Lakemarker transporting lumber from Montague to Milwaukeemarker, Wisconsinmarker. The ship became infamous after it sank in a storm in 1901, and the wooden nameplate of the schooner floated back to the shores of the City of Montague, where it was found in 1902. Many people believed that the boat was coming home, and as a result the ship is frequently associated with the city.The city also has a successful football team, The Wildcats, that have won districts 5 years in a row, won regionals 4 years, appeared in the state semi-finals for 4 consecutive years, and won its first state championship in 2008 under head coach of 5 years Pat Collins, who was the former quarterback of the 1992 Montague football team, which also made an appearance in the state finals.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 3.2 square miles (8.3 km²), of which, 2.7 square miles (6.9 km²) of it is land and 0.5 square miles (1.4 km²) of it is water. The total area is 16.88% water.

The city is at the southern end of the Hart-Montague Trail, a paved cycling and multiuse trail which attracts visitors during the warm months to Montague, Hartmarker, and the small towns and business in between.

Major highways


As of the census of 2000, there are 2,407 people, 990 households, and 667 families residing in the city. The population density is 905.1 per square mile (349.4/km²). There are 1,075 housing units at an average density of 404.3/sq mi (156.0/km²). The racial makeup of the city is 97.17% White, 0.37% African American, 0.46% Native American, 0.25% Asian, 0.00% Pacific Islander, 0.58% from other races, and 1.16% from two or more races. 2.33% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There are 990 households out of which 32.1% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.5% are married couples living together, 12.5% have a female householder with no husband present, and 32.6% are non-families. 28.3% of all households are made up of individuals and 11.7% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.43 and the average family size is 2.97.

In the city the population is spread out with 26.1% under the age of 18, 8.8% from 18 to 24, 27.0% from 25 to 44, 23.7% from 45 to 64, and 14.4% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 37 years. For every 100 females there are 89.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 87.2 males.

The median income for a household in the city is $40,677, and the median income for a family is $49,185. Males have a median income of $37,389 versus $25,282 for females. The per capita income for the city is $21,238. 9.5% of the population and 6.6% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total population, 9.1% of those under the age of 18 and 9.3% of those 65 and older are living below the poverty line.


Montague Area Public Schools (MAPS) is the local school district for the city of Montague. Three of the districts five schools are located in the city, Montague High School, Nellie B. Chisholm (NBC) Middle School, and R.R. Oherli (RRO) Elementary School. The districts other two schools, Oceana High School and Rothbury Elementary are located in the Village of Rothburymarker, Michiganmarker. The district serves students of both Muskegon Countymarker and Oceana Countymarker. This arrangement exists after voters living in the tiny district of Rothbury Public Schools agreed to merge with the slightly large district of Montague Public Schools. This merger of the two districts occurring in the 1950s to increase efficiency and decrease costs for both communities, led to the formation of "Montague Area Public Schools".

The district serves students living in the Muskegon County communities of the city of Montague, as well as Montague and White Rivermarker townships. In addition it serves students living in parts of Whitehallmarker and Blue Lakemarker townships. The district also serves students living in the Oceana County communities of the Village of Rothbury and Otto Townshipmarker. In addition it serves students living in parts of New Eramarker, Michiganmarker. Also, the district is a member of the "Muskegon County School of Choice" program; the district can serve anyone living in Muskegon County. The district has increased enrollment slightly from the program, but has limited growth in the past because the rural district has limited capacity for new enrollees.

The city of Montague is also the home of Saint James Catholic School. The small parochial school serves grades K-5 and has roughly 100 students. It serves students living in the Montague Area Public School District, as well as the Whitehall District Schools. The school shares busing with both districts, and dropped the sixth grade a few years after adding Kindergarten. Recently, White Lake Baptist Academy (grades K-12) and Mouth School (grades K-8) closed because of dwindling enrollment.In 2008 the Montague Wildcats football team won the state championship over the Leslie Blackhawks 41-20.

Notable residents

Pat Collins. Montague Football Head Coach.


  1. 49437 5-Digit ZCTA, 494 3-Digit ZCTA - Reference Map - American FactFinder, U.S. Census Bureau, 2000 census

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