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Brighton, Michigan is an outer suburb of Metro Detroit, and one of two incorporated cities in Livingston County, the other being Howell.

Brighton is surrounded by the townships of Brighton, Green Oak, Hamburg, and Genoa. Howell is 9.9 miles northwest, South Lyon is 10.8 miles southeast, and the village of Pinckney is 13.5 miles southwest of Brighton, while the city of Ann Arbor is 18.6 miles to the south, and downtown Detroit is about 45 miles to the southeast.

The chief route through the city is I-96, which forms its northern boundary. M-23 intersects the interstate just east of Brighton. Other routes include Brighton Road (Main Street) and Grand River Road (Grand River Avenue), as well as Brighton Lake Road, Challis Road, Flint Road, Hilton Road, Lee Road, Pickett Road, and Spencer Road.

Founded in the early 1830s, there are a couple of different accounts as to its founding. An account posted on the Brighton District Library site suggests that the city was founded Elijah Fitch, who named both the township and the town for his former home in Brighton, New York. Another account is that the town was founded by Maynard Maltby, who originally named the settlement Ore Creek, for the stream that runs through its center, in which there were iron ore deposits.

Both accounts include Maynard Maltby as an early settler. Along with a brother, Maltby acquired land, and built a log cabin home in the area, then returned to New York for their wives and family, building a sawmill on Ore Creek. Likely, the settlement that grew up along the sawmill was known as Ore Creek, although it was never platted or incorporated as a village. A post office was established on November 5, 1836, with the name of Ore Creek. Wilbur Fisher was the first postmaster.

As Ore Creek was situated along a route between Lansing and Detroit, hotels were built to accommodate travelers, and increased logging brought more people to the area and cleared land for the development of a downtown area with grocery stores, shops, and other businesses. One of these hotels was the Brighton House, constructed for Justice Elijah Fitch, who named the hotel for his hometown in New York. Justice Fitch was a Democratic leader in Michigan Territory who supported the speedy admission of Michigan to the Union as a state, and an active supporter of Governor Mason, Michigan's first governor.

By the account that attributes the founding of Brighton to Fitch, Brighton was founded in July of 1835, at the time that the organization of the State of Michigan was being perfected.

By all accounts, the post office was renamed Brighton on February 13, 1838, after Brighton, New York, which was the hometown of several of its early settlers. Brighton was incorporated as a village in 1867, and became a city in 1928.

Today, Brighton is an urban city of more than seven thousand people. It has major business districts downtown and on either side of town. Downtown Brighton hosts several shops, restaurants, and service businesses, while the west side of town includes Brighton Mall, and Green Oak Village Place is on the east side of Brighton. Brighton offers several cultural, social, and recreational activities. The area is surrounded by more than fifty lakes, wetlands, and golf courses. The Brighton Recreational Area, just west of the city, includes about five thousand acres of woods, meadows, and lakes. The Brighton School District operates five elementary schools, two middle schools, and a high school, serving approximately seven thousand students in the Greater Brighton area.

The focus of this guide is on the City of Brighton, Michigan. Appropriate resources for this category include websites representing the city itself, as well as local businesses and industries, schools, places of worship, organizations, attractions, and events.


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