(Center Street - 1914) - contributed by Paul
The plat of this village was recorded by Wm.
Dunlap and D. L. Cady in 1840. The first frame
building in the township was erected where this
village is located, and as early as 1827, John
Miller and Israel Marsh built a grist mill near
what is now Northville. The stones were made out of
a large boulder that was found in the vicinity, and
they did good work. In 1838, according to Blois'
Gazetteer, the village contained a Presbyterian,
Methodist and Baptist church, four stores, two
taverns, a flour mill with two run of stones, a saw
mill, a furnace, a carding and cloth dressing
establishment, and a chair factory.
village is on the line of the Flint & Pere
Marquette Railroad, and after Wyandotte is the
largest manufacturing center in the county outside
of Detroit. It has a most admirable location. The
land is somewhat broken and hilly, and the region
is so much more attractive than the more level
portions of the county, that it is called the
Switzerland of Wayne.
The village was
incorporated on March 13, 1867, the corporation
limits including all of Section 3 in the town of
Plymouth. The following officers were provided for
in the act of Incorporation: a president, two
trustees to be elected annually, and two for a term
of two years, a marshal, treasurer, clerk, and
assessor. The first election was to be held on the
third Monday of April, and afterwards on the first
Monday of April. Under the act elections were held
and officers were elected, but the record book has
been lost, and therefore the names can only be
obtained fro the year 1880: President, Eli K.
Simmonds; Clerk, Charles R. Stevens; Trustees, M.
D. Gorton, L. W. Hutton, S. Clark; Assessor, W. H.
Ambler; Treasurer, D. I. Northrup; Marshal, J. W.
Davis. Under Act of February 23, 1881, the
village was re-incorporated, the charter election
being held on March 7.
In 1834 a stone
school-house was built on the main street. It was
occupied for many years and is now a blacksmith
shop. The present Union School building was built
in 1865, at a cost of $12,000. It was enlarged in
1887 by an addition on the south side at an expense
of $3,000, and again in the spring of 1889 by one
on the north side at a cost of $4,500. The opera
house was built in 1879 by Samuel J. Little. In
1887 it was sold to Dr. Moffat, of Lansing. It
seats about 1,000.
There are three
cemeteries, the old, the new, and the Hillside, the
last named is owned by a stock company, and the
others by the village. A lodge of Odd-fellows,
known as Wah-Bun-Nong, No. 48, was organized
February 9, 1850. Northville lodge of F. & A.
Masons, No. 186, was organized January 28, 1866.
The Northville Masonic Association was incorporated
in 1881, for the purpose of erecting a Masonic
hall. It occupies the second story of a double
brick store, and cost, with its fittings, about
$7,000. The building was dedicated in 1882.
In 1887, it was enlarged by adding a second story
to two or more stores. The hall has a frontage of
seventy-four feet by a depth of seventy-seven feet
and is one of the finest lodge rooms in the county.
In the spring of 1888, the Northville
Circulating Library Association was formed. The
library is in charge of E. R. Reed as librarian,
and it is hoped that it may eventually grow into a
large and nourishing institution. The Northville
Record, an eight page, five column quarto, with a
circulation of 800, is published every Friday by E.
Roscoe Reed. It was started in 1869 by Samuel J.
Little. After passing through the hands of Joseph
Haas, George Kator, J. H. Junkins, and possibly
others, it came into the possession of its present
In way of fire protection the village
has buckets and ladders, procured in 1883, a hook
and ladder apparatus, purchased in 1885, and a
chemical engine, purchased in 1886. The population
of the village in 1870 was 626, and in 1880,
(Detroit Edison Building - 1928) - 200 N. Center
Source: History of Detroit and Michigan, Silas