Bad Axe is a city in the U.S. state of Michigan and the county seat of Huron County located in the Thumb region of the Lower Peninsula. The population was 3,462 at the 2000 census, making it the largest community in Huron County and second largest in the Thumb, after Caro (if Lapeer and St. Clair counties are not included). The city's unusual name dates to the time of its settlement. While surveying the first state road through the Huron County wilderness in 1861, Rudolph Papst and George Willis Pack made camp at the future site of the city and found a much-used and badly damaged axe. At Pack’s suggestion, Papst used the name “Bad Axe Camp” in the minutes of the survey and on a sign he placed along the main trail.