Van Buren Co MI

 South Haven, Michigan


South Haven, MI (Michigan Theatre - 1947) - Contributed by Paul Petrosky

The village of South Haven was incorporated by act passed in January, 1869, and an organization was effected, but it was found so imperfect that the village was reincorporated in 1871, under the corporate name of the "Village of South Haven," with a president, treasurer, three trustees, and an assessor. The territory embraced all of section 10, fractional sections 9 and 3, and a strip of land 80 rods wide on the west part of section 2, and the northwest quarter of the northwest quarter of section 11.

The first election under the reincorporation was held May 10, 1869. The following is a list of presidents, clerks, treasurers, and trustees from that time to the present:

1869-70, George Hannahs;
1871-72, Foster I. Parks;
1873,    Barnes H. Dyckman;
1874,    Calvin Fretcher;
1875-77, George Hannahs;
1878,    Samuel A. Tripp;
1879,    Chase H. Dickinson

1869-70, Alonso M. Haynes;
1871,    H. H. Hunter;
1872-73, George T. Rogers;
1874-79, Henry K. Dewey

1869,    William H. Andrews;
1870,    Eugene D. Conger;
1871-79  Alwyn M. Prouty

1869,    Daniel Howard, Albert Thompson, Levi R. Brown, George L. Seaver, William P. Bryan,
         H. Dyckman
1870,    Elijah Rathbone, Calvin Fletcher, Orris C. Lathrop;
1871,    Darus E. Comstock, Daniel G. Wright, Timothy Bishop;
1872,    B. F. Heckert, Uriah Conger, A. S. Dyckman;
1873,    Milan W. Sweet, William M. Patton, William P. Byran;
1874,    David R. Jones, William F. Smith, B. F. Hockert;
1875,    James E. Gunsolly, Marshall J. Dickison, Charles Delamen;
1876,    Daniel G. Wright, George N. Hale, Humphrey Cain
1877,    Charles Delamere, George B. Pomeroy, John Mackey;
1878     Daniel O. Wright, Humphrey Cain, William H. Thompson
1879     John Mackey, George B. Pomeroy, George N. Hale

Village Plats - A village plat was laid out by J. R. Monroe in 1834, but the place declined, and the plat remained a waste of wild land.  The first plat of the present village was made by Marvin Hannahs, and bears date Feb. 18, 1852. It embraced the northwest quarter of section 10, lying south of the river, and that portion of the southwest quarter of section 3 lying south and west of the river.

The subsequent additions to the village plat have been as follows:
   Tubbs' addition on section 3, along the lake-shore;
   Dyckman, Hale & Co.'s addition, 80 acres, northwest quarter of northeast quarter of section 10;
   Hale, Conger & Co.'s addition, 190 acres, comprising all that portion of section 3 lying east and south of river;
   Hale's survey of about 40 acres on the southwest quarter of the southwest quarter of section 2;
   Dyckman & Woodman's addition, comprising all of the southwest quarter of section 3 west of the river;
   Elkenburgh's addition, south of the original plat, comprising the west half of the southwest quarter of section 10

The location and advantages of South Haven as well given in an address of J. E. Bidwell, delivered in February, 1873, from which the following is quoted: "Commercially, South Haven is favorably located at the mouth of Black River, -- whose dark waters are stained with the dissolution of mineral deposits and the decay of original forests and their annual foliage, replaced with thriftier trees in great variety, -- from which many vessels are now annually laden with rich cargoes of choice lumber, wood, and timber, consisting principally of beech, whitewood, walnut, cherry, oak, maple, pine, and basswood, and conveyed across the lake to Chicago and other lake cities, to finish and warm their beautiful cottages and splendid mansions, their palatial stores and other commercial buildings, their numerous lines of railway and vessels, -- all assisting the growth and prosperity of our great Northwest. South Haven is also the terminus of the Kalamazoo and South Haven Railroad, connecting a few miles out at Grand Junction, with the Michigan Lake Shore Railroad, and at Kalamazoo, forty miles distant, with the Michigan Central and other important lines of railway, pointing in every direction. South Haven is also connected by steamer and vessel with Chicago, sixty-eight miles distant, southwest, and Milwaukee, ninety miles across the lake, northwest, connecting with steamers for Detroit, Cleveland, and Buffalo eastward."

The village now contains a population of about 1600, with five churches, Congregational, Baptist, Methodist, Reformed, and Catholic; two hotels, post-office, American Express Company, telegraph-office, deputy collection of customs, light-house, railroad depot at the terminus of the South Haven Division of the Michigan Central, office of the South Haven Sentinel, opera-house, bank. Lake Shore Nursery, three-warehouses, seven general stores, two hardware-stores, three drug-stores, two tailor's stores, four boot and shoe-stores, one clothing-store, two jewelers' stores, four milliners' stores, two photograph-galleries, one fruit-package-factory, one fruit-evaporator, two steam saw-mill, one four- and feed-store, three furniture-stores, two markets, one cooper-shop, one harness-shop, four blacksmith-and wagon-shops, two insurance-offices, two dentists, three physicians, three lawyers, one master-builder.

South Haven, MI (January 7, 1918) - postcard from Paul Petosky

History of Berrien and Van Buren counties, Michigan. With ... biographical sketches of its prominent men and pioneers. Ellis, Franklin, 1828-1885., Johnson, Crisfield., D. W. Ensign & Co. Philadelphia: D. W. Ensign & Co., 1880.