I stumbled across an old village by the name of Brant, in Brant Township, Saginaw County. Try as I might, I could only rustle up a fraction of the village's history.

The only reason that Brant was given that name, is because that was the name of the township. But as for why the township was named 'Brant', we can only assume it was dubbed after an early settler. According to Michigan Place Names, the township was established in 1858, with early settlers by the names of Cogswell, Colville, and Oliver...but no Brant. When the first settlers arrived in the area, the land was a Native American dreamland: a wilderness made up of thick forests, hills, and rivers.

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When surveyors began selling plots of land, many families took advantage of this and came to this new community looking for a change and new way of life. The original intent of the surveyors was to make a waterway that connected the Grand River with Saginaw Bay, in an attempt to connect the east and west sides of Michigan, one waterway all across the state.

The post office opened on March 17, 1884 with George Ward Jr. as first postmaster. Brant had a good number of downtown businesses, as you'll see in the old atlases in the gallery below. There was a school, G.A.R. Hall, a mill, general store, saloon, hotel, and a few other shops.

Brant remains an unincorporated community and is indeed an interesting drive-thru.

The Small Town of Brant, Michigan

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