Ortonville in 1848 vs Today
By Hailey Owens
Ortonville, Michigan is a beautiful and friendly community that has gone through a lot of changes and difficulties over the years. It was founded in 1848 by pioneers who set out to build a new community and they chose a beautiful location amongst all the hills and shining lakes. Today, Ortonville is still a darling little village that continues to grow into a small charming community.
Ortonville was named after Orton Amos, in honor or being one of the town’s early settlers. Orton was born on June 7th, 1809. Orton went through a difficult journey to find Ortonville. He traveled with his wife and two children and they went through muddy old Indian roads across the wilderness from Detroit, royal oak, troy, and pontiac, just to find the calm and peaceful land, known as, Ortonville today.
When Ortonville was first founded, it became a thriving place of industry and trade. There were many gristmills and saw mills that made Ortonville thrive and it provided jobs for the local residents. The small community became home to many businesses like a bank, flower shop and many other small stores. Overtime, there was a major shift in Michigan during 1848, that affected Our charming community, Ortonville. The major shift was the decline in the lumber industry. When the lumber industry started to decline it led to many mills closing. This shift led to this small town leaning towards other industries and many small businesses closing and changing locations.
Another significant change that happened overtime is the growth of Ortonville’s residential population. As said before many businesses had to close or relocate. There wasn’t much in Ortonville, Joe Wojo the owner of Wojos stated that during 1984, people were leaving michigan like crazy and unemployment was high because of the oil industry and not many people lived in Ortonville. When Joe first started his business it was a very rural area and the first stoplight was downtown Clarkston and there is now one at oakwood road, M-15, grange hall road and one by the Siko gas station. Since then, Ortonville has grown to about 1,250 people living in Ortonville and business everywhere. Ortonville is still known as a quiet and small community. The village is able to show off several historic buildings and landmarks, such as the Ortonville United Methodist Church and the old grist mill which was donated by Emeling hamilton in 1968. They are there as reminders of its early years from the beginning 1848. In addition, Ortonville has many natural landmarks like parks and recreational areas, providing residents and visitors with various outdoor activities which are so much fun for friends and family. These features make Ortonville an attractive place to live and visit, preserving its rich history while embracing its future.
Ortonville’s strong sense of community is one of its most significant assets. The village’s community organizations, such as the Ortonville Lions Club and the Ortonville Community Historical Society, play an important role in preserving the village’s history and promoting a sense of community among residents. Furthermore, Ortonville is renowned for its friendly and welcoming residents, who are always eager to greet newcomers and make them feel at home. This sense of community is further strengthened by the village’s numerous events and festivals, such as the popular Ortonville Flea Market and the annual Fourth of July Parade, which bring residents together and create lasting memories.
In conclusion, Ortonville, Michigan has undergone significant changes since its founding in 1848. While it was once a busy center of industry and trade, it has since evolved into a more peaceful and residential community. Despite these changes, Ortonville remains a charming and beautiful community that has an outstanding history and a strong sense of community spirit. The village’s numerous community organizations, friendly residents, and various events and festivals create a welcoming atmosphere that makes it easy for newcomers to feel at home. Whether you’re a longtime resident or a newcomer, Ortonville is a lovely little village that is sure to capture your heart.