Sparta, Michigan

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{area, community, home}
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{village, small, smallsup}
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Sparta is a village in Kent County in the U.S. state of Michigan. The population was 4,159 at the 2000 census. The village resides in Sparta Township.



The Sparta area was first settled in 1844, with the township formally organized in 1846. The first settler in what is now the village was Jonathan Nash in 1846. Calling the place Nashville, he built a sawmill on Lick Creek. Subsequently, he changed the name of the creek to Nash Creek. Seeing as there was already a Nashville in Michigan, the state legislature suggested Sparta. The village was platted in 1867 and incorporated in 1883.

In recent years due to the growth of the Grand Rapids metropolitan area the town has developed a more suburban flair as subdivisions of tract homes have been built in large numbers over the last decade.

Music in Sparta

In the early to late 1960s, Sparta was home to Fenton Records, an independent record company and recording studio. The label recorded many local bands, as well as other Michigan garage bands. Due to the limited runs of the records, Fenton vinyl 45rpms are highly collectable, often selling for hundreds of dollars each. Many of the records were recently compiled on a CD called Scream Loud!!!: The Fenton Records Story (Way Back Records)[1]


According to the United States Census Bureau, the village has a total area of 2.4 square miles (6.3 km²), all land. The village is entirely surrounded by Sparta Township.


As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 4,159 people, 1,618 households, and 1,093 families residing in the village. The population density was 1,703.9 per square mile (658.1/km²). There were 1,704 housing units at an average density of 698.1/sq mi (269.6/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 95.70% White, 0.63% African American, 0.17% Native American, 0.41% Asian, 1.88% from other races, and 1.23% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.58% of the population.

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