Osceola County
In 1840 this tract of land was first called “Unwattin”, after an Ottawa Indian chief. It was give the name Osceola in 1843; which means “black drink” or possibly “rising sun”. The land was officially created into Osceola County in 1869. It is most well known as the home of Rev. George W. Bennard, the composer of the hymn “The Old Rugged Cross”.


Evart, MI
Evart got its start with its first lumber camp in 1851. The Evart named was given in honour of the first soldier who settled the area, Pvt. Perry Oliver Everts of the 1st Indiana heavy Artillery Co. A. At an organizational meeting in 1870, it was agreed to name the township after the earliest settler from the General Army of The Republic. The misspelling stuck. Starting as a lumber camp, Evart didn’t suffer the fate of the others; it maintained through industries and fires and is still a thriving community.

Dighton, MI
The first settlement of Dighton (referred to as Old Dighton) was a mile north and east of the current town. It was a lawless and rowdy town in its beginnings: the burning of a dancehall by a man who was thrown through its second story window and Daniel White, who was murdered in 1868 because he was black. Moving to its current location in 1901, Dighton had grown over 1000 people. The Manistee & Grand Rapids RR rolled through to take away the tall stands of maple and beech (for flooring and furniture). It was a lawless and rowdy town in its beginnings. In 1914, the flooring mill burned and was never rebuilt. The railroad was abandoned and the tracks were taken up in 1920. The remains of the former town are overgrown with grass and weeds. Today, there is one store and a few occupants to claim Dighton as their own.

Park Lake, MI
It was a town birthed in 1888 by a sawmill along the Ann Arbor Railroad. The virgin pine had already come to pass, and ten to fifteen years later the hardwoods were gone. The Park Lake hotel was closed in 1912 and torn down in 1924. It still has a graveyard.
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