Michigan was the site of the deadliest school massacre in American history. In 1927, a school board member in Bath, Michigan, named Andrew Kehoe detonated explosives he had planted in the local school, killing 38 children and six adults. Kehoe had also killed his wife and set fire to his farm before carrying out the attack.
Antrim County, located in the northern part of the Lower Peninsula of Michigan, has a rich and varied history. The region was originally inhabited by Native American tribes, particularly the Ottawa and Chippewa. European settlers began arriving in the early 19th century, attracted by the area's abundant natural resources and fertile land.

The county's official establishment dates back to 1840 when it was named after County Antrim in Ireland. The logging industry played a significant role in the county's early development, with many sawmills being built along the numerous rivers and lakes. The arrival of the Grand Rapids and Indiana Railroad in the late 19th century further accelerated growth, leading to the establishment of towns like Bellaire and Central Lake.

In the early 20th century, Antrim County embraced the tourism industry, taking advantage of its picturesque landscapes and recreational opportunities. With the establishment of Torch Lake as a popular summer resort area, tourism became a major economic driver in the county. Numerous resorts, cottages, and recreational facilities were built, attracting visitors from all over Michigan and beyond.

Over the years, Antrim County has experienced ups and downs, facing challenges such as economic recessions and the decline of industries like logging and agriculture. However, the county has adapted and diversified, focusing on tourism, agriculture, and manufacturing. Today, Antrim County continues to attract visitors with its natural beauty, charming towns, and vibrant community, while also providing a high quality of life for its residents.

This timeline provides a concise overview of the key events in the history of Antrim County, Michigan.

  • 1840: Antrim County was organized and established on April 1, with its county seat in Elk Rapids.
  • 1879: Elk Rapids was replaced as the county seat by Bellaire.
  • 1895: The Detroit and Charlevoix Railroad reached Bellaire, contributing to the town's growth.
  • 1903: The village of Bellaire incorporated as a city.
  • 1913: The Village of Mancelona incorporated as a city.
  • 1929: Michigan State Park System acquired land on the east shore of Torch Lake, establishing the Torch Lake State Park.
  • 1945: The Torch Lake Naval Gunnery School was established in Kewadin during World War II.
  • 1955: Antrim County's first ski area, Schuss Mountain, opened in Mancelona.
  • 1965: The Kewadin Casino opened in Kewadin, becoming one of the first tribal gaming establishments in the United States.
  • 1971: The Jordan River Pathway was established as a scenic hiking trail in Antrim County.
  • 2008: Antrim County gained national attention during the U.S. Presidential Election for computer software issues that led to temporary discrepancies in vote tallies.