SMALLTOWN MICHIGAN: Applegate, in the Thumb
The village of Applegate lies in the southeast corner of Washington Township, Sanilac County, in Michigan's thumb. It originated in 1856 when George Pack decided to build a business by constructing a sawmill. The town could have been called "Packville", but the name "Applegate" was chosen, named after General Jesse Applegate, who led other pioneers through to Oregon in 1845.
At Applegate's late 1800's peak, it had a bank, barber shop, blacksmith, cattle pen, churches, city hall, coal & lumber company, creamery, depot, elevator, foundry, hardware store, hotel, meat market, post office, sawmill, stockyards, and a wide variety of shops & stores.
These days, Applegate retains many of it's old buildings, homes and storefronts, much to the delight of roadtrippers and travelers. There are many antique shops you can check out to find out more town history or buy some treasures for yourself. The town currently has a bank, bar & grill, party store, and post office.
It's a good-sized village and it's time well-spent, when you visit. Take a drive-thru soon. Michigan small towns are especially cool to visit during the holiday season!