Where are the Apostle Islands?

The Apostle Islands are a group of 22 islands located in Lake Superior

The Apostle Islands are a group of 22 islands located in Lake Superior, the largest of the Great Lakes, in northern Wisconsin, United States. The Apostle Islands region spans two counties, Ashland and Bayfield but the region is mostly in the Northern half of Bayfield County. The mainland portion of the Apostle Islands includes Port Wing, Herbster, Cornucopia, Red Cliff, Bayfield, Washburn, and Ashland. These islands are known for their rugged beauty and pristine wilderness. Each island offers its own unique charm, with towering cliffs, sandy beaches, and dense forests. The Apostle Islands National Lakeshore was established in 1970 to preserve and protect these natural wonders. Visitors can explore the islands by hiking, camping, kayaking, or sailing, immersing themselves in the stunning landscapes, abundant wildlife, and rich history of the area. The Apostle Islands are a hidden gem for nature enthusiasts and outdoor adventurers seeking a peaceful and breathtaking escape.

Apostle Islands VS AINL

The Apostle Islands and the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore aka AINL, are not the same thing. The islands have been around much longer and AINL was formed in 1970. The AINL has 21 islands and the Apostle Islands are 22 islands because Madeline Island is not a part of the National Lakeshore. Also, the AINL only includes a very small portion of the tip of Long Island, the rest of Long Island belongs to the Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa. The AINL, formed in 1970 was granted 21 islands and 1/4 miles from shore on those islands and the mainland section, however, when you are more than 1/4 mile from shore you are in the Apostle Islands but not in the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore.

How Did The Apostle Islands Get Their Name?

The Apostle Islands are not comprised of a single island, but rather an archipelago consisting of 22 islands. None of these individual islands are named “Apostle Island,” but rather the collective group as a whole is referred to as the Apostle Islands. The Apostle Islands received their name from the early French explorers and missionaries who first encountered them in the 17th century. These explorers, inspired by the majestic beauty and serenity of the islands, named them “Les Isles des ApĂ´tres,” which translates to “The Islands of the Apostles.” The name was chosen to honor the twelve apostles of the Bible, symbolizing the religious significance and spiritual aura that the islands seemed to possess. Over time, the name was anglicized to its current form, the Apostle Islands.

What did the Ojibwe Call the Islands

Before the French found them the Ojibwe people referred to the Apostle Islands as “Miskwaabikaang,” which translates to “red ochre islands.” This name was derived from the vibrant red sandstone cliffs that line the shores of the islands. These islands hold great cultural and spiritual significance for the Ojibwe community, as they have been a gathering place for generations. The Ojibwe people have relied on the islands for sustenance, resources, and as a place for ceremonies and storytelling.

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