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The city of Alma, Michigan is situated near the center of the Lower Peninsula of Michigan. Although not the county seat, it is the largest city in Gratiot County.

Bounded by Arcada Township to the southwest, south, and southeast, and by Pine River Township to the northwest, north, and northeast the city of Alma shares a short border with the city of St. Louis in the northeast. Ithaca, the county seat, is just over eight miles to the south-southeast. Business Route 127 is the chief route through the city, connecting with US 127 east of the city.

The city is bisected by the Pine River, a tributary of the Chippewa River, which flows northeast through the city, entering in the southwest and exiting in the northeast. Pine River Park is an archaeological site along the river discovered by archaeologists from Alma College, who conducted excavations there from 1977 to 1985, yielding material from the Early Woodland period. The site was included in the National Register of Historic Places in 1985.

The Pine River Country Club occupies a large portion of western Alma, while the Alma College campus area includes the Alan J. Stone Center for Recreation, which includes a pool, rock wall, and facilities for basketball, dodgeball, roller hockey, indoor soccer, tennis, and volleyball, as well as a fitness room, multi-purpose room, and a suspended running track.

Alma College, a private liberal arts college, affiliated with the Presbyterian Church, is situated on a hundred and twenty-five acres in central-west Alma.

MidMichigan Medical Center Gratiot, in the northern part of the city, is a 97-bed hospital affiliated with MidMichigan Health offering emergency services, primary medical care, and a full range of specialty services.

The first European-Americans to settle the region that was to become Alma were General Ralph Ely, who came with three companions in 1853. In 1855, he built a sawmill here and platted a village that he named Elyton in 1856. Later, an addition was platted by a Mr. Gargett, and called Alma, the name by which the whole community came to be known. On July 7, 1858, a post office was established in Alma, with General Ely as the first postmaster. Alma was incorporated as a village in 1872, and as a city in 1905.

Early businesses included the Alma Springs Sanitarium, built and promoted by Ammi Willard Wright in the 1880s. From 1913 to 1929, Alma was home to the Republic Motor Truck Company, the largest exclusive truck manufacturer in the world in 1918, and a major supplier of the Liberty Trucks used by the US military during World War I. In 1928, Republic merged with American LaFrance, becoming LaFrance-Republic. A parts depot for Republic was in operation in Alma until 1957.

The City of Alma, Michigan is the focus of topics in this category. Websites related to the municipal government are appropriate here, of course, as are those of local industries, businesses, schools, places of worship, organizations, and individuals.


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