Seymour Coleman purchased 1000 acres of land from Ammi W. Wright, who had one of the largest lumbering spreads in Michigan.
Mr. Coleman dreamed of having a town on his land, so in 1871 he had 100 acres surveyed and platted. He allowed the Pere Marquette Railroad to extend its line through his land if they would build and maintain a station here.
A town grew around the mills that were built to process lumber. Between 1870 and 1890 Coleman had 20-30 mills in operation. There were three banks and numerous churches. The business district contained mercantile store, blacksmith shops and many other types of business, including 20 saloons.
When much of the lumber in the area had been removed, the town seemed destined to die. In 1879 the Pere Marquette built a spur to Mt. Pleasant, and other types of businesses began locating in Coleman.
Coleman was incorporated as a Village in 1887 and became a 4th Class City in 1905. In 1969 Coleman voted to become a Home Rule City abolishing the system of wards for a Mayor and City Council. Electricity came to Coleman in 1910 and a city water system in 1951. A city wide sewer was installed in 1970. The new water tower was added in 1987.
In recent years Coleman has seen the addition of the Pere Marquette Rail trail, a walking and bike trail running east 22 miles from Coleman to downtown Midland. This portion of the trail was completed in the fall of 1994. The trail now runs west 10 miles to Clare.
A facelift to the City of Coleman, the streetscape and lighting project was completed in 1994. Pere Marquette Senoir Esates, a 30 unit apartment complex for seniors 60 years and older, was completed in November of 1996. An additional 30 units were completed in November 2008.
BLADES, the skating facility, was finished in the summer of 1999. Another addition is the school’s sports complex which includes a football field and track.
We are very pleased to have the Coleman Area Library housed in a beautiful new building completed in 2002. In the northerly portion of the city is an industrial park is waiting for occupants.
View the 2012 Coleman Dashboard