History of Macomb County, Michigan

The period has passed away forever when the once philosophic phrase a thousand years scarce serve to form a State, could be used with propriety. The Hame may now be said of history. The busy activities of our days, the march of progress, the wonderful advances of science and art. contribute to the realization of ideas, and crowd into a period of fifty years n greater number of remarkable and important events, than fifty decades of olden times in the Eastern World could offer to the chronicler. Therefore, the compilation of history is not only justifiable, but also essential. It is the enduring record of years that can only through it be recalled, of men who will be honored by the American manhood of this and coming generations.

This work is dedicated to the people of Macomb County. With the exception of the first part, the history of Michigan, it is distinctively local, and as such must be considered a magnificent record of a worthy people. The work of the French and American pioneers of Macomb extends over a century. Within that period, they have raised It from its primitive condition to the rank of one of the first divisions of the State cultivated its wild lands, built its villages and towns and brought into existence two important centers of population Mt. Clemens and Romeo. They transmuted the marsh into firm earth, removed the forests, and decorated the river banks with happy homes and fertile fields. It is difficult to point out precisely the men who were foremost in contributing to this result: all share in the prosperity of the county, and take a special pride in its advancement; each citizen has experienced the luxury of doing good, and feels that life is not now a mere shadow of a dream. The alarms and anxieties attendant on the pioneer life have been changed to certainties and happy greetings. Those who saw the primeval forest waving over the land, lived on through the days of its destruction to see the clearings covered with the houses of merchants and manufacturers, or the fields and homes of a prosperous people. They wear the honors which justly belong to them: while those who died, obtained a glimpse of what they labored for before passing away, and live in the memory of the present. The pioneers who are gone beheld the budding desires of younger days expand into the flower, and seeing, went to the undiscovered land beyond the grave, leaving their memories and their deeds to be carried down the stream of time.

In these pages, an effort has been made to treat the history of the county in a full and impartial manner. Doubtless a few inaccuracies may have crept in; but such must be attributed to other causes, rather than carelessness. In regard to the pages devoted to personal history, a large sum of money, much labor and time have been expended on them. Even after the personal notes taken by the township historian were rewritten, and in many instances submitted, this very copy was placed on type-writer and mailed to the person concerned for revision. The biographies given here, together with their collection, would necessitate the steady work of one experienced man for five years. The collection of such facts as appear in the State and County histories, would entail on an inexperienced writer ten years' steady work, while the compilation of township histories, as they appear here, would doubtless occupy the attention of such a writer for a year. Within a few months, this work has been begun and completed Notwithstanding this remarkable celerity, it will be evident that little or nothing which should have a place in its pages, has been omitted. It will also be evident throughout that the writer oE the general history, as well as the gentlemen who collected the biographical notices, have realized the simple fact of undeserved praise being undisguised satire. In some instances, this realization may have led to too brief references to many men. an account of whose lives might occupy many pages.

The plan of this work is specially adapted to a great record book. All things pertaining in general to the State are dealt with in the State history, and form, as it were, an introduction to the county history. The latter is carried down from the first Otchipwe invasion to the present time, treating fully and impartially every subject of general interest to the people. So with the cities and the villages they have been very liberally sketched; while each township has just sufficient notice given it to render its history a most valuable record for the future.


Table of Contents


Chapter I. The Aborigines 17
Chapter II. French Exploration and Settlement 22
Chapter III. The French and Indian War 38
Chapter IV. National Policies
Chapter V. Military History
Chapter VI. Political History 79
Chapter VII. Miscellaneous
Chapter VIII. State Societies
Chapter IX. Michigan and its Resources


Chapter X. Introduction 133
Chapter XI. The Indians 166
Chapter XII. The French Pioneers 194
Chapter XIII. The Moravians
Chapter XIV. Pioneer History 219
Chapter XV. Pioneer Reminiscences
Chapter XVI. Organization 295
Chapter XVII. Political History 306
Chapter XVIII. The Press of Macomb County
Chapter XIX. Poetry of Macomb
Chapter XX. Progress of Education 353
Chapter XXI. The Churches of Macomb 258
Chapter XXII. The War for the Union
Chapter XXIII. Olden Enterprises
Chapter XXIV. Courts and Bar of Macomb
Chapter XXV. County Finances and Statistics
Chapter XXVI. Agricultural and Farmers Associations
Chapter XXVII. Necrology 484
Chapter XXVIII. Chronology 496


Chapter XXIX. Mounty Clemens City
Chapter XXX. Romeo
Chapter XXXI. Armada
Chapter XXXII. Shelby Township
Chapter XXXIII. Bruce Township
Chapter XXXIV. Macomb Township
Chapter XXXV. Richmond Township
Chapter XXXVI. Washington Township
Chapter XXXVII. Sterling Township
Chapter XXXVIII. Warren Township
Chapter XXXIX. Ray Township
Chapter XL. Lenox Township
Chapter XLI. Harrison Township
Chapter XLII. Erin Township
Chapter XLIII. Chesterfield Township





Read the Book - Free

Download the Book ( 94.1 MB PDF ) - Free

In the pages devoted to the history of Macomb County, the useful man and his work will have that prominence, to which his physical and moral courage entitle him. It is a necessity that the names of such men should be transmitted; because many of them, whose lives made material for this work, have passed into eternity; others stand on the brink of the grave. Those who have joined the majority, as well as these who are soon to visit the Better Land, have done good service, claiming as their reward here, the only boon, that their children and children's children should be reminded of their fidelity, and profit by their examples.

To give effect to this laudable desire is the aim of the writer. Turning over the records of the county, nothing of moment has been left unnoticed. Beyond the period, over which the records extend, all that is legendary has been examined and utilized. Although the Old Settlers and their children extended a full cooperation, the work necessitated the most earnest labor on the part of the writer and his assistants. Success waited on such labor, with the result of bringing forth from their hiding-places many valuable papers, upon which to base a just account of early times. Many of the surviving old settlers were interviewed, and from their reminiscences of olden times, a good deal of all that is historically valuable, in these pages, was selected.

The reader must remember that the general history of the county does not embrace every historical event. Nothing has found a place in this very important section of the work, which did not possess a character of generalization. Beginning with the history of geological formations, archeological discoveries, meteorological phenomena, zoological representatives, and physical characteristics, this chapter is succeeded by a full account of Indian and pioneer days, American settlement, together with a number of chapters, each one complete and most important in itself.

The general history is followed by the chapter's devoted to township and village history, each chapter forming a complete historical and historia-biographical sketch of a township, city or village. No effort has been spared to render this portion of the work reliable as well as interesting.

Unlike the history of the State, County, Townships and Villages, biography is the work of many men, whose notes were transcribed, retranscribed, and very generally submitted to the persons concerned, for revision or correction; so that if literary errors occur, it must be credited to the person, who gave the biographical sketch in the first instance. The irrepressiile typos often make grave errors which no foresight can set aside; therefore if typographical errors do appear, let justice guide the critic to sympathize with the children at the typo's ease, whose art doth move the world. Deal lightly with their excesses.