Whenever I think of the Michigan town of Clarkston, my mind immediately sees Pine Knob. No, not DTE Energy Music Theatre...PINE KNOB. Thankfully, after 21 years of being called DTE, the name was switched back to 'Pine Knob' in 2022.

But this isn't about Pine Knob...this is about the town of Clarkston in Oakland County.

Clarkston wasn't founded by some lumber mogul or company CEO big shot like so many towns and cities. According to Michigan Place Names, Clarkston was founded by a squatter. His name was Linus Jacox, who arrived on this land from New York in 1830. He proceeded to build himself some kind of a shack-dwelling made from cedar poles. A couple of years later, Butler Holcomb arrived and built himself a legitimate home and then a sawmill. (Earlier, in 1823, a family by the name of Williams bought some land there, but never settled or built...so Linus seems to still hold the title of first person to set up some kind of a home.)

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Some time later, the Clark brothers – Jeremiah and Nelson (and another brother, Milton) – came and platted the town in 1840, which they dubbed 'Clarks' Town', or 'Clarkston'. Jeremiah and Nelson built a couple of mills, started a fish hatchery, operated a general store, and were postmasters. Not to sit idly by, they also planted Clarkston's first apple trees.

In 1864, a depot was placed along the Detroit & Milwaukee Railroad a couple of miles away from Clarkston, and named 'Clarkston Station' (see the old map in the gallery below).

From then on, the town grew and remains prosperous to this day.
Take a look at some old photos, depicting how Clarkston once looked back during the years 1900-1922...

Vintage Photos of Clarkston, Michigan


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