Saline Michigan History

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Missy Caulk TEAM

Orange RisdonIn the 19th century, Orange Risdon was attracted to what is now Saline, but at the time was part of the Territory of Michigan. He was surveying a military road from Detroit to Chicagoand was working at the request of the federal government.

The road was subsequently known as the Chicago Road, later called U.S. 12 or Michigan Ave. MI Ave is still the main street in Saline going right through downtown. Michigan Ave runs from Detroit to Chicago.

On April 5, 1825, Risdon purchased 164 acres from the government. In time, he built his house on the land and it was there that the first town meeting was later held.

In 1832, Risdon was instrumental in Saline being platted as an unincorporated village, a status that was retained until 1866 when the village incorporated.

Interestingly, the area "almost" became two towns. In 1845, Schuyler Haywood of Barnegat, NJ built a flour mill on the west side of the Saline River. Other settlers soon added a saw mill, blacksmith shop, cooper shop, stores and a windmill factory.


Saline was founded as a village in 1832 and it wasn't long before it grew, both in population and size. It was an important stage-stop on the Chicago Road and the town attracted a number of artisan workshops and mills. But it was actually the railroad that made the village grow.

During the Civil War, so many young men were drawn into the ranks of the military that there was a serious labor shortage.

More photos of the history of Saline can be found on Flickr.

Education of children was a primary concern of the settlers. Education today is still of primary concern for Saline Residents with most new people moving into the Saline area  for the quality of the schools.

Union School todayEven before the Union School was established in Saline, the Lodi Academy was begun in 1847 north of town, in the Lodi Twp.  At that time schools were using an ugraded system for schools. The graded system did not begin until 1865. 

Union School was built in 1868 on N. Ann Arbor St. at McKay. It is still there today and used for Community Education offices, Pooh Corner and Alternative Education.


Interesting enough, Saline is still known for it's excellent school system. Every year I sell homes for people that have heard about how good Saline schools are and move here to be apart of them.

Raising 5 kids here I know that to be true.

Posted by


Missy Caulk, Ann Arbor Realtor

Missy Caulk, Broker/Owner of Savvy Realty Group can be reached at 734-926-9797 or email:

Our Team of 6 agents are available to help you relocate to Ann Arbor, Saline, Dexter, Chelsea, Milan, Ypsilanti Township, Clinton, Manchester, Whitmore Lake, or throughout Washtenaw County, MI.

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Gary Smith
Agent Marketing Today - Commerce Township, MI
Missy, good information. I was surpised by the poll results.
Apr 28, 2007 01:12 PM
Missy Caulk
Missy Caulk TEAM - Ann Arbor, MI
Savvy Realtor - Ann Arbor Real Estate
I'm not surprised, I think alot of the really popular bloggers here, have 2 or 3. But, so far 50% only use activerain.
Apr 28, 2007 10:25 PM
Tina Howell
RE/MAX DFW Associates VI - Little Elm, TX
Little Elm & Frisco Area Real Estate
Nice to see the school system has always been a high caliber. 
Jun 11, 2007 03:32 AM
Gayle Rich-Boxman Fishhawk Lake Real Estate
John L Scott Market Center - Birkenfeld, OR
"Your Local Expert!" 503-739-3843

Missy, you have been *FEATURED* in today's Tuesday Travelogue!

                                           Travelers in the Rain!



Travelers in the Rain logo-Vineyard at Gales Creek Oregon-Gayle Rich-Boxman Copyrighted All Rights Reserved 2013

Apr 07, 2015 03:14 AM
Hannah Williams
HomeStarr Realty - Philadelphia, PA
Expertise NE Philadelphia & Bucks 215-820-3376

So nice to see your smiling face Missy Caulk  thanks for the tour

Gayle Rich-Boxman Fishhawk Lake Realtor (503)755-2905  sent me over

Apr 07, 2015 03:46 AM