History of Northville
The Northville District Library has an
extensive local history department, and even has a searchable
database on-line. ;
Check them out here!
The following pictures and captions are from
First Hundred Years
by Jack W. Hoffman and
by Laura Smyth Hixson. Both books are available at the
Northville District Library.
The northeast side of Main Street with the old frame building
reportedly built by John Miller in 1830.
Long before Northville Downs became a reality (mid 1940's),
Northville boasted a race track. At the turn of the
century the property was purchased at Center and Seven Mile Road
for a private nine hole golf course. A few years later a
group of men, led by the late Ed Starkweather, started an
"Athletic Park" on the site where harness racing occurred.
Later, it was here that the Wayne County Fairgrounds were
located. The building in the foreground is the then new
electric light plant, having replaced the generator in the Globe
furniture factory. This picture was taken shortly after
the turn of the century.
The story is told that Main Street was "paved" with leather
scraps tossed out by shoemakers who operated businesses here
early in the Nineteenth Century. The Phillips family
settled here early, and obviously one of them was a shoemaker.
It is believed, although the author cannot be certain, that this
shop was located on the north side of Main Street, between
Center and Hutton.
The Old Crow's Nest. This was located in the intersection
of Main and Center Streets. Band concerts and speeches
were given here.