Loomis

Laid out by Erastus G. Loomis, George W. Wise and E. F. Gould on November 21, 1871, on section 9 and on section 10 of Wise Township, Isabella County 16 miles north of Mt. Pleasant. There were platted three hundred and ninety one lots, in thirty five blocks. According to Isaac Fancher, the vilage thrived for some time and became quite notorious as the toughest place in the county. It was at first a lumbering and sawmill town. In the early days of the town, it was made up largely of lumber laborers, many of whom were reckless and disposed to drink and carouse, spending all of their earnings in the saloons. Very soon after the mill was established, one Cady opened a saloon, which was soon followed by one Long Tom (Tom Lommison) with another and proved to be the roughest kind of place. This man dealt out death and destruction in unstinted quantities to all that called. It soon became a menace to all good government, as well as to the safety and good order of the community.  For all that, the place grew to be quite a village until the lumbering ceased and the town was forced to depend upon its agricultural resources and then being new and but little land cleared, there was not much to support a village and as the mill was closed the laborer sought work in other places. The hotel and boardinghouse closed for want of patronage. There is no left only a couple of stores (1911), a P.O., school house and few other concomitants that go with a small community with good railroad facilities. The Pere Marquette running through the center of the village. The people can now live in peace and quietude. The saloon has long since ceased to annoy the good citizens of the village and the church and school house are steadily repairing the waste places.

According to R.L. Dodge, Loomis was first named "Butchel". The area was first settled in 1870 and had a hemlock extract factory, two shingle mills and a sawmill at itís height. There were 350 people in 1877. Seth Bowdish was postmaster. There were also several general stores, two saloons, a meat market and two hotels.

Dodge interviewed Phil Worden (aged 87 in 1955) who told him that 700-800 people lived in the area of the village during the late 1860ís during the building of the railroad.

Worden also indicated that a fellow by the name of Sam Zeiter owned a combination saw and shingle mill and that he also owned a race track and race horses, the track being about 80 rods west of the main cross roads of the village.
 
 
 

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