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Oakland Township kicks off bicentennial with doughnuts

By: Linda Shepard | Rochester Post | Published March 13, 2019


OAKLAND TOWNSHIP — Two hundred years ago, on March 16, mill builders Benjamin Woodworth and William Russell purchased 160 acres of land on the Paint Creek, near Dutton and Livernois roads.

It was the first recorded land purchase for the Oakland Township and only the 10th recorded land purchase in all of Oakland County.

To celebrate this important anniversary, Oakland Township is planning a variety of events. To kick off the festivities, township officials are giving away 200 doughnuts March 16 at the Paint Creek Cider Mill and the Rochester Cider Mill.

“We might as well celebrate with doughnuts, since our history centers on our early mills and especially our first gristmill, right in Goodison on the Paint Creek and now the location of the Paint Creek Cider Mill,” Oakland Township Supervisor Mike Bailey said in a statement.

Each location will provide 100 free doughnuts, asking in exchange for a small request from the Historic District Commission.

“The doughnuts are free for the answer to our question: ‘What do you love about preservation in Oakland Township?’” David Phillips, chair of the Historic District Commission, said in a statement. “We will have a collection jar on-site to gather up all the statements. So come on out with your ideas for us and have free doughnuts to celebrate 200 years in our historic township.”

All comments received will be shared later on the Oakland Township website.

All are welcome to doughnuts 11 a.m.-7 p.m. March 16 at the Paint Creek Cider Mill, located on Orion Road, at Gallagher Road; and 8 a.m.-6 p.m. the same day at the Rochester Cider Mill, located at 5125 Rochester Road.

Oakland Township has the distinction of being one of Michigan’s oldest townships, one of the original 25 when the territory of Michigan was organized in 1827, township officials stated. According to the official 1820 census, only 330 residents lived in the county at that time.

The rolling hills and rich soil attracted early settlers to land near the Paint Creek, including Needham Hemingway, a New York farmer who came to Michigan in 1824. Hemingway built the first gristmill in Goodison in 1835, currently the Paint Creek Cider Mill.

The Oakland Township Historical Society is planning additional bicentennial festivities at the Cranberry Lake Farm Historic District, on Predmore Road. Residents are encouraged to check the Cranberry Lake Farm Historic District Facebook page and the Oakland Township Historical Society Facebook page for more information.