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Surrounded by Davison Township, the City of Davison, Michigan is in eastern Genesee County. Administered autonomously, it is a suburb of Flint, which is about ten miles to the west.

The chief route through the city is M-15, also known as State Road, which runs north-south through the center of the city, intersecting Davison Road (Flint Street) just north of the center. I-69 runs east-west just south of Davison, with an exit at M-15. The center of Burton is 9.2 miles west-southwest, Otisville is 9.5 miles north, Lapeer is 10.6 miles east, Grand Blanc is 11.8 miles southwest, Mt. Morris is 13.9 miles northwest, Columbiaville is 14.4 miles northeast, and Metamora is 18.6 miles to the southeast.

The city's history is tied to the township until it developed its own identity as a village in 1889, and as a city in 1938. Both were named for Norman Davison, a renowned Michigan pioneer, although he operated a sawmill in Atlas Township, south of Davison Township. Atlas Township was originally named Davisonville Township, but it was changed to Atlas to avoid confusion with its neighboring township of Davison.

The first European-American settlers in Davison Township were Andrew, Alson, and Debby Seelye, who came from New York to purchase 240 acres in 1836. Their parents came the following year, and Andrew and Alson opened a general store and ashery, which was known as Seelyeville until the mid-1860s. The first settler in the area of the township that became the City of Davison was Goodenough Townsend, who purchased land in 1836, and moved onto it in 1839, coming from Wheelock, Vermont. He was instrumental in petitioning the legislature to form the township government, and the first township meeting was held in his home, with Abel Seeley serving as moderator, and Townsend was elected the first township supervisor.

When a post office was established on April 19, 1850, Goodenough Townsend served as the first postmaster. Originally, the post office was named Davison Centre, but the Centre was dropped on April 28, 1864.

Seth Wicker married Debby Seelye in 1848, and moved to the area in 1852, building the first hotel at the site of what is now M-15 and Lapeer Road. They also operated a store and ashery. The community around the hotel and ashery was named Davison Centre, but known locally as Wickers Corners. When the Flint to Lapeer stage line came through the region, the hotel became a way station for changing horses, and mail was delivered there twice a day.

A school was opened in a wooded area, with a blaze trail connecting the school with the general store and post office. Older students attended a four-month winter term with a male teacher, and younger students attended the summer term. When the Grand Trunk Western Railroad came through in 1871, the town grew, necessitating a larger school. In 1886, a two-story brick school building was constructed at the intersection of Main Street and Flint Street, serving until 1930 when it was destroyed by fire.

With the growing importance of the railroad, a community grew up around the railroad tracks, about one mile north of Davison Centre, known as Davison Station. E.W. Rising came to Davison in 1872. He helped to plat the village, and acquired a large percentage of it. In 1889, Davison was incorporated as a village, and the Davison Station post office was changed to Davison on June 30, 1893, merging the two settlements. E.W. Rising served as the first village president.

A Baptist Church was organized in 1858, and construction of the first section of its sanctuary was completed in 1902. The Free Methodist Church was organized in 1881, and the congregation purchased the original school building for use as a sanctuary in 1886. St. John's Catholic Church began in 1870, building at the corner of Oak Road and Richfield Road. Trinity Lutheran Church was organized in 1940, and St. Dunstan's Episcopal Church, St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church, and the United Missionary Church were organized in 1953.

Near the end of April of 1894, a fire destroyed Davison's Main Street. The Davison Volunteer Fire Department was organized the following year, equipped with a hand pumper and two-wheel hose cart.

Early industries included grain elevators, a washing machine factory, a brickyard, a buggy works, a cheese factory, and a sawmill. Telephone service was introduced by Lewis Gifford, and the Community Telephone Service grew from a single phone in 1883 to a direct dialing system in 1957, later becoming the Union Telephone Company, and then General Telephone Company.

Davison was incorporated as a city in 1938. The Davison Chamber of Commerce was established in 1951.

The focus of this category is on the City of Davison, Michigan. Online resources representing the city, or any individuals, businesses, industries, schools, church, or organizations within the city are appropriate for this category.


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