Kalamazoo, Michigan

City: Kalamazoo

County: Kalamazoo

State: Michigan

Lat/Long: 42.2833, -85.5833

Situated nearly fifty miles south of Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo was inhabited by Potawatomi peoples when British forces established a blacksmithing and trading station during the War of 1812. Euro-Americans settled the area in 1829. Titus Bronson was the first settler and named the site “Bronson,” after himself. The village became the county seat for Kalamazoo County in 1831. In 1836, the name of the village was changed to Kalamazoo. By 1840, U.S. federal authorities had forcibly relocated most of the Potawatomi people westward, and Kalamazoo’s population was 1,500. By 1860, the population had increased to just over 6,000 people.

Merriam-Webster’s Geographical Dictionary, 3rd ed. (Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster, 1997), 564; Samuel W. Durant, History of Kalamazoo County, Michigan (Philadelphia: Everts & Abbott, 1880), 101, 209-11, 214, 224-25, 232.