The township was originally organized as a part of the township of Homer. In 1838 it was organized as a separate township under the name of Clarendon. The name was probably given to it owing to the fact that many of its settlers were from the town of Clarendon, Orleans county, New York.
Long Hard journey: There is no doubt but that the weary immigrants had their sight gladdened by the beauty of the country they came into, and whatever fears they may have possessed as to the poor quality of the soil were quickly dispelled on arriving at their destination.
Purchase The Land:
The first settler who located in the township was Anthony Doolittle, who came in May, 1832, in company with Deacon Henry Cook. The latter located in what is now Eckford township. These two men purchased four hundred and eighty acres of land at an advance of fifty per cent from government price, paying one dollar eighty-seven and a half cents per acre. The land had been entered the previous winter by
Dr. Hays, of Marshall. Mr. Doolittle located on section 1, on " Cook's prairie," as it was afterwards called, a name it has ever since retained.
The first meeting
The first town meeting was held in 1838, of which Aaron B. Bartlett was chosen chairman and Timothy Hamlin, clerk. Truman Rathburn Hayes was elected supervisor; Timothy Hamlin, township clerk; Horace B. Hayes, John Main and Ira Sumner, assessors; Charles B. White,
collector; Samuel Blair and Cornelius Putnam, directors of the poor; Alonzo H. Rogers, George W. Hayes, and Elijah Andrus, commissioners of highways; John Main, Ira Sumner and Horace B. Hayes, school inspectors; Truman Rathburn, William Cooper, John Main and Ira Sumner, justices of the peace. The first school in the township was taught on Cooks prairie in 1833. The first religious society was organized by the Presbyterians in 1838. Meetings were held in school houses until a log church was built on the southeast quarter of section 18, which
was used for a number of years. The Methodists organized in 1840 and held services in a log house built by Lewis
Benham. A frame church was built some time between 1840 and 1850.
The young men of Clarendon responded nobly the call of their country during the Civil War, leaving a record of which the township will ever be proud.
The Railway Comes:
The air-line division of the Michigan Central railway was opened for travel in the fall of 1870, and a station established two miles north of
Clarendon Centre. Thus a means of transportation for stock, grain, and other products is afforded the inhabitants, who are, by means of the railway, brought into direct and quick communication with the great markets both east and west. The township subscribed ten thousand dollars' aid to the railway in 1869, the vote on the question standing one hundred and ten for the subscription and
ninety-six against it. This was at a second meeting held for the purpose, the project having been defeated at the first one. Since the road has been completed, and the iron horse thunders over the rails with loads of precious freight behind him, the people are not sorry they made the investment. Clarendon, was a station on the Air Line Michigan Railroad of the Michigan Central Railroad, beginning in approximately 1870. The post office at Clarendon Centre was moved to the station and renamed Clarendon on May 11, 1871. The
office closed on November 16, 1877, but was restored from October 4, 1883,
through April 30, 1910. The village of Homer is to the east, and the Homer post office, with serves most of eastern Clarendon Township. The village of Tekonsha is to the west, and the Tekonsha post office serves the southwest portion of Clarendon Township. The city of Marshall is to the northwest, and the Marshall post office serves the northwest portion of Clarendon Township.
The township of Clarendon today, with its many cozy residences, broad highways, fields teeming with the manifold products of the soil, thrifty orchards, and ever-recurring evidences of prosperity, bears a striking contrast to the same territory as it appeared to the pioneer of one-hundred eighty years ago, and with the exception that the contour of the surface remains the same the change in its
aspect has been almost a complete revolution.
You are welcome to visit our township and hope that you enjoy your stay, rather it be for a day, a week, or a lifetime! If you are unable to visit use, the pictures seen on this site will you give you a look at what we get to enjoy as residents of Clarendon Township Calhoun County Michigan.