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Manchester, Michigan is in southwest Washtenaw County, in the southeastern portion of the Lower Peninsula.

The village is in northeastern Manchester Township, with which the village shares much. The River Raisin flows through the center of the village.

The only incorporated city or village within ten miles of Manchester is Clinton, about eight miles to the north-northwest. Others within twenty miles of the village are Chelsea, Tecumseh, Saline, Brooklyn, Grass Lake, Adrian, Britton, Onstead, and Dexter.

The area that was later to become Manchester was acquired by the United States government through the 1807 Treaty of Detroit with the Ottawa, Chippewa, Wyandotte, and Potawatomi Native American tribes, although European-Americans did not immediately settle the area.

The first documented European-Americans to come through the area of the current village were John Mudget Mack, Hosey Harris, and Oliver Parker, who completed the land survey for Manchester Township in 1824. John Gilbert, manager of the Pontiac Land Company, acquired 80 acres in the area in 1826, and another 160 acres north of his original River Raisin frontage in 1831. However, he didn't settle there.

In the spring of 1833, he arranged to have a dam, mill race, bridge, and grist mill built, with Emanuel Case as the general contractor and mill operator, and William S. Carr and Elijah Carr preparing timber for the mill. His son, Harry S. Gilbert, came to the area as overseer and carpenter. That same year, Gilbert had the townsite platted by Hiram Burnham. By 1835, he owned 440 acres in Manchester.

In November of 1835, Gilbert sold all of his Manchester holdings to Stephen Fargo, who brought his brother James, wife Eliza, and Shepherd and Catherine Knapp in as co-owners.

Built in 1832, the Manchester Mill operated as a grist mill until 1981. Although no longer in operation, the building still sits along the River Raisin, next to the dam that powered it. Stephen and James Harvey Fargo opened the Fargo & Fargo General Store in 1833, with James operating the business. Originally situated within the flour mill structure, it was moved to its own building opposite the mill in 1835.

While some histories of the village hold that the Manchester was named for Manchester, New York, as that was the hometown of some of its original settlers, while others claim that it was named for Manchester, England, an acclaimed center of water-powered manufacturing at the time. Likely, both played into the choice of the name.

Although the village has experienced population declines in 1910 and 1920, likely due to the downturn of the timber industries, and a slight decline in 2010, its history has mostly been one of steady growth. Manchester first appears on a census roll in 1880 with a population of 1,156, its current population is just above 2,100.

Today, the village is largely residential, with single-family detached homes making up the majority of its housing, and more than 60% of the homes in the township are located within the village, which also includes a mix of duplexes, multi-unit apartments, townhouses, and mobile homes.

The village's commercial area is concentrated in a two-block area along Main Street, for the most part, although a second commercial area is west of the central business district along Austin Road. Industrial properties are concentrated along M-52 and Austin Road, in the southern part of the village.

The focus of this category is on the village of Manchester, Michigan. Appropriate topics include online resources for the municipal or township governments, as well as local businesses, industries, schools, places of worship, organizations, attractions, events, sporting activities, and recreational or entertainment venues.


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