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The City of Mason, Michigan is the seat of government for Ingham County, which makes Michigan the only state in the nation with a capital city that is not also a county seat.

Mason is largely in Vevay Township, although a portion of the city extends north into Alaiedon Township.

Despite its proximity to the state capital of Lansing, the city is primarily surrounded by agricultural land. Three creeks wind their way through the city, including Willow Creek in the southwest and Rayner Creek in the east-central portion of the city. They converge with Sycamore Creek, which flows north out of the city.

The chief routes to and from the city are US-127 and M-36. Other routes include Cedar Road, Columbia Road, Dansville Road, Dexter Trail, Eden Road, Hagadorn Road, Howell Road, Hull Road, Jewett Road, Kipp Road, Okemos, Road, and Sitts Road.

Cities and villages within twenty miles of Mason include Ingham, Leslie, Dimondale, East Lansing, Eaton Rapids, Lansing, Williamston, Potterville, Webberville, and Stockbridge, while the unincorporated communities of North Aurelius, Eden, Holt, Aurelius, and Okemos are within ten miles of the city.

The city was named for Stevens T. Mason, the first governor of Michigan.

Early in 1836, Charles Noble purchased 560 acres of land in Vevay Township, at the site of the current city, and employed Lewis Lacey to develop the site. He constructed a dam on Sycamore Creek to power a sawmill. Later, Ephraim B. Danforth joined Lacey, adding a gristmill, and platting the original townsite as Mason Centre in 1838. At that time, Mason Centre was the only platted community in the county.

Dr. Minos McRoberts came to Mason Centre in 1837, becoming the first physician in the community. He also served as the Register of Deeds for the county.

The first county courthouse was built in 1843, and was located across the street from the current structure, having been moved there in 1857, and replaced the following year.

Incorporated as a village in 1865, Mason's population grew by more than two hundred percent between 1860 and 1870, and by another fifty percent by 1880. Although there were slight declines in 1900, 1910, and 2000, Mason's has mostly experienced growth, and its current population is well above eight thousand.

Its rapid growth during the 1860s and 1870s was largely due to the completion of the Jackson, Lansing, and Saginaw Railroad, which came through Mason in 1866, connecting with the east-west line of the Michigan Central Railroad in Jackson. Mason became a city in 1875.

With the ability to ship products to distant markets, several industries began. The Telling-Bell-Vernon Company of Cleveland opened a plant in 1919 to process cream, powdered milk, and infant formula. Another was the Dart Container Corporation, the largest manufacturer of foam cups and containers in the world, including the Solo cup.

In 1877, having been named as the state capital, Lansing attempted to lure the county seat away from Mason, but an agreement was made that moved some county offices and courts to Lansing, while the county seat remained in Mason.

The focus of this portion of our guide is on the City of Mason, Michigan. Online resources, such as websites, for the municipal government, as well as the county offices physically located within the city, and any businesses, industries, schools, places of worship, organizations, attractions, events, sports facilities or programs, and recreational opportunities in Mason, are appropriate for this category.


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