Michigan Genealogy

Michigan Genealogy is being developed as a genealogical and historical resource for your personal use. It contains information and records for Michigan ancestry, family history, and genealogy. Specifically, it provides sources for birth records, death records, marriage records, census records, tax records, court records, and military records. It also provides some historical details about different times and people in Michigan history.

The search on the right side will search all of the Michigan Genealogy website, but will not search the data linked to from our offsite data pages.


  • Michigan Obituaries by County
  • Richland : its sons and daughters
    “Richland: Its Sons and Daughters” by Lorenz H. Loesel offers a comprehensive review of the first century of Richland Township, located in Saginaw County, Michigan. Authored in the aftermath of the township’s centennial celebrations in 1962, the book emerges from a deep-seated interest in local heritage among the community’s residents—an interest that prompted the Richland Township Board to commission and fund this work, with hopes of recouping the investment through book sales. The book covers a broad spectrum of topics, from the early pioneers like Lemuel and Martin Cone to the development of local infrastructure such as roads, railroads, and schools, including the history of the Hemlock School District. It delves into the civic, religious, and educational growth of the township, spotlighting key figures and events that have shaped its trajectory. The narrative also touches on challenges faced by the community, including pandemics and disasters like the 1906 fire of Hemlock, Michigan, showcasing the resilience and solidarity of its people.

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Turn of the Century in Richland Township

This article delves into the transformative first decade of the 20th century in Hemlock, emphasizing the significant changes that reshaped the town’s economy and daily life. With the expansion of railroads and the decline of lumbering, farming emerged as the community’s economic backbone, supported by improved transportation and a burgeoning variety of goods. The narrative highlights the hardworking yet nearly self-sufficient lifestyle of the average farmer, contrasted with the modernization of farming practices over time. Additionally, it reminisces about the era’s simple pleasures, like the anticipation of the merchandise peddler’s visits, and the advent of electricity, showcasing the community’s adaptation…

1906 Fire of Hemlock Michigan

This article recounts the fervor and anticipation surrounding the Fourth of July celebrations in 1906 in Hemlock, where the community eagerly prepared for a day of festivity, marked by parades and decorations. However, the excitement was abruptly overshadowed by a devastating fire in the early hours of July 4th, causing significant damage to the business section of the village and resulting in losses estimated at $15,000. The fire, which started under mysterious circumstances, highlighted the vulnerability of a town without adequate fire protection, relying instead on a volunteer bucket brigade and fortuitous assistance from passing train workers. The incident not…

Stage Coach Mail in Early Richland Township

This article traces the evolution of the postal system in Richland Township, highlighting its significance in the lives of early settlers. From the initial lack of communication channels, the establishment of a post office in Hemlock City in 1869 marked a pivotal development, facilitating the exchange of letters and news with distant friends and relatives. The narrative details the progression from stagecoach mail delivery to the integration of mail service with local businesses, and eventually, the introduction of Rural Free Delivery and Parcel Post services. Through the appointment of various postmasters, including the first, Jacob King, and notable figures like…

Biography of Philo Thomas

This Biography of Philo Thomas, introduces one of the earliest settlers in Richland Township, whose life story is pieced together through external sources rather than direct biographical records. Making his first settlement in 1850 and a subsequent one in 1865, Thomas’s pioneering efforts laid the foundation for future developments in the area. Not only a general farmer, Thomas also owned a blacksmith shop, contributing significantly to the early infrastructure and daily life of his town. His legacy includes a family lineage that continued to impact the community through subsequent generations, with descendants running local businesses. This narrative explores the adventurous…

Biography of Civilian Phelps

This biography of Civilian Phelps chronicles the life of Civilian Phelps, an early settler in Richland Township, who made significant contributions to his community despite facing personal tragedies. Born in New York in 1834, Phelps’s early life was spent farming and teaching before serving in the Civil War. Post-war, he married and moved to Michigan in 1873, where his family endured the smallpox epidemic, resulting in the loss of a child and their home. Despite these hardships, Phelps rebuilt his life, cultivating a successful farm and serving as Superintendent of Schools and Justice of the Peace, exemplifying resilience and dedication…

Biography of William McBratnie

This concise biography of William McBratnie highlights his significant contributions to Richland Township’s early development. Born in Scotland in 1834 and emigrating to America in 1851, McBratnie became a pivotal figure in the community, notably as Richland’s first supervisor. His entrepreneurial spirit led him to open a general store in Hemlock City in 1874, which also housed the post office, enhancing the convenience for residents. McBratnie’s civic involvement extended to serving as Postmaster, treasurer, supervisor, clerk, Notary Public, Justice of the Peace, and School Director. His marriage to Armanda Cone, a local schoolteacher, and their adoption of two children, further…
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