Unadilla Township, Michigan

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Unadilla Township is a civil township of the southwest corner of Livingston County, Michigan, United States. The population was 3,190 at the 2000 census.

Contents

History

Unadilla was formed by an act of the Legislative Council of the Territory of Michigan on March 26, 1835, and initially included what is now Iosco Township to the north and a portion of Lyndon township in Washtenaw County on the south. The first township meeting was held on the first Monday of April 1835. Since Livingston County government was not organized until 1836, the township was at first attached to Washtenaw County. On March 6, 1838, Iosco Township was set off and with the southern portion being assigned to Lyndon Township, Unadilla assumed its present boundaries.

The first land purchase in the township was recorded on June 20, 1833 by Eli Ruggles of Brookfield, Connecticut, while accompanied by his brother-in-law, Amos Williams, and Nathaniel Noble, an acquaintance who lived nearby in Dexter. After returning to Connecticut, Ruggles became ill and died. Williams returned to the land in the fall of 1833 with his son, Samuel, son-in-law, Gary Briggs and Briggs' wife. The land purchase was recorded as the north half of the northwest quarter of section 33, which would have been 80 acres (320,000 m2), but in subsequent accounts was frequently described as 40 acres (160,000 m2). During that winter the Williams and family built a sawmill, which began operations in the spring of 1834.

Communities

There are no incorporated municipalities in the township. There are a few unincorporated communities and historic locales.

  • Gregory began as a station on a branch of the Grand Trunk Railroad, which came through the farm of Halstead Gregory in 1884. He built a store near the depot and became the first postmaster in March 1884. The Township Hall is located at 126 Webb St. in Gregory.[3]
  • Plainfield was the nexus of many Indian trails and a favorite Indian camping ground. Jacob Dunn and Levi Clawson, both from Newton, New Jersey, were the first to purchase land here in 1835 and to then settle. Philip Dyer, also from New Jersey, joined them in 1836. Both Dunn and Dyer operated taverns. The community was at first known as "Dyersburg", but the name of the post office, "Plainfield", was chosen in April 1837 by Dunn, after Plainfield, New Jersey. The post office operated until October 1913.[4]
  • Unadilla was at first known as "Milan". A post office was established in June 1834, but because Milan, Michigan already had the name, the post office was called "Unadilla" after the township. But a plat had already been recorded for the "Village of Unadilla" in what is now Williamsville, so the plat was recorded as the Village of East Unadilla. This became known as simply Unadilla after the other Village of Unadilla was abandoned. A survey for the plat was made on April 14, 1837, by Richard Peterson, Jr., but it was not recorded by the proprietors Robert Glenn and Thomas S. Gill until April 21, 1840.[5]
  • Williamsville, situated northeast of Williamsville Lake, was at first platted as the Village of Unadilla on January 30, 1837, by Darwin N. Edson and the heirs of Curtis Noble. This plat for east half of the east half of the southwest quarter of section 28 was vacated by an act of the state Legislature on March 25, 1846. The area later became known as Williamsville".[6]

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