MONTMORENCY COUNTY HISTORY
Prior to Michigan statehood in 1837, the land that would become Montmorency County was part of the Great Lakes Region, Indiana Territory. In 1805, when Michigan was organized, the territorial governor created Wayne County which included the present Montmorency County. As treaties were signed and land ceded by the natives to the federal government, new counties formed, and in 1818, the present-day Montmorency County was part of Michilimackinac County.
In 1837 after Michigan attained statehood, Henry Schoolcraft surveyed the state's northern property and proposed twenty-nine northern counties as well as their names; many of these names were later adopted by the state legislature in 1840. When the county was organized April 1, 1840, it was known as Cheonoquet County after a Chippewa Chief who took part in Indian treaties in 1807, 1815, 1825 and 1837.
Renamed Montmorency County on March 8, 1843, it was originally spelled montmorenci, and historians conjecture this reflects the area's French-Canadian influence: the French Duke of Montmorency purchased a lieutenant governship in Canada and the first archbishop of Canada--Montmorency-Laval--both could be influences on the county's name. Montmorency was one of the last two Michigan counties to be officially approved by the state legislature in 1880 when it split from Alpena County. Its official year of establishment is 1881. Montmorency originally had three townships: Briley, Montmorency and Rust with the town of Brush Creek (now Hillman) being the county seat. Today, three towns comprise Montmorency County: Atlanta, becoming the county seat in 1893, Hillman, the only incorporated village, and Lewiston, a resort community; eight townships represent Montmorency's governmental units: Albert, Avery, Briley, Hillman, Loud, Montmorency, Rust, Vienna. MORE. . .