Before the town was created, Greenland Township came first - organized on February 3, 1853 in Ontonagon County by the Forest Mining Company. Clement March was a capitalist who wanted to see the area prosper from the mining operations…..and it was he who named the township after the town where he grew up: Greenland, New Hampshire.

The town of Greenland lies at the base of the Keweenaw Peninsula. William Spalding left Ontonagon and moved his family here in 1858 to make good on his mining claim. The settlement was formed and a post office kicked off that same year. The town also became a station along the Chicago, Milwaukee, and St. Paul Railroad.

The first building in the entire township was a house built with logs in 1850. The first hotel sprang (or is that ‘sprung’?) up in 1855 called the Eagle Hotel.

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Driving thru Greenland in the 2000s may be of interest to Michigan history buffs; many of the old original miners’ homes are still in use for town residents. Most of the great old buildings that lined the downtown area are gone, except for one or two that survived.

The gallery below shows you how full the downtown once was with classic establishments like a general store, old post office, and grocer…and now sits almost empty except for one or two lonesome original buildings. There is an old church that still stands, but looking at its condition, I wouldn’t imagine it is still being used. Scroll down and have a look!

Greenland, in Ontonagon County


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