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Situated in northeastern Geneva Township, in northern Van Buren County, Lacota, Michigan extends north into Casco and Lee townships in Allegan County.

The chief routes through the community are County Road 681, County Road 388, and Baseline Road.

The cities and villages of Breedsville, South Haven, Bangor, Bloomingdale, Gobles, Hartford, and Lawrence are within twenty miles of Lacota, and the unincorporated communities of Kibbie, Leisure, Lee, Pullman, Grand Junction, Hawkhead, Sherman Park, Spring Grove, Berlamont, Maple Grove Corners, Bakersville, and Miami Park are within ten miles.

As an unincorporated community, Lacota doesn't have defined boundaries, but its population center is concentrated to the west of CR-681, between Baseline Road and CR-388.

The Kal-Haven Trail, a 33.5-mile rail-trail that runs from South Haven to a point just west of Kalamazoo, where there is a trailhead, passes through Lacota. The trail is a former Kalamazoo & South Haven Railroad rail bed that has been converted into a hiking, biking, and snowmobiling trail with a limestone/slag surface.

Clark Pierce, who came to the area in 1837, is acknowledged as the first European-American settler. On May 20, 1864, a post office opened in the community as West Geneva, named for the township, with Jerome B. Watson as postmaster. When a townsite was platted by Enoch M. Pease in 1870, it was named Irvington, for Irving Pierce, the first white child born in the township. The name of the post office was changed to Irvington on June 2, 1874.

When the Michigan Central Railroad opened a station there in 1884, they requested a change in the name of the community, as they already had a town named Irving on their line. Lacota was suggested as the new name by Varnum M. Dilley, whose father was reading a novel in which the protagonist was a Native American woman named Lacota. The post office was renamed Lacota on December 22, 1884.

Although platted, Lacota was never incorporated as a village.

Although the small population center of Lacota is in Geneva Township, some residents of the adjacent Lee and Casco townships identify with Lacota as their mail is delivered by the Lacota post office.

Although Lacota has never been a large town, it once had a reasonably sized commercial district, a shoemaker, a bank, a school, and some shops, including the Van Pelt Store and Wood's General Store, as well as an Odd Fellows Hall. However, today its downtown district consists mostly of empty lots where shops used to stand, while other commercial buildings have been converted to homes, and still others are empty buildings.

Topics related to businesses, industries, schools, churches, organizations, attractions, events, and sports or recreational opportunities in Lacota are the focus of this guide.



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