Grand Rapids, Michigan

Grand Rapids is located in the southwestern part in Michigan.

Michigan USA Location

Grand Rapids is the second largest city in Michigan with a population of 188,040 residents (2010).

About Grand Rapids

The Furniture City. Grand Rapids is home to five of the world's leading office furniture companies. Grand Rapids was in 2010 named the most sustainable midsize city in the USA. The city was the hometown of Gerald Ford, the 38th President of the United States.

To See And To Do In Grand Rapids

Grand Rapids Public Museum

Grands Rapids Art Museum

Gerald R. Ford Museum

Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park

Van Andel Museum Center



Ada Covered Bridge

Heritage Hill Historic District

Cappon House & Settlers House Museums

Dutch Village

History Of Grand Rapids

The Grand Rapids area was settled by Europeans in 1825. In 1826, a fur trader named Louis Campau settled in the region and established a trading post, a blackmith shop. Louis Campau is the official founder of Grand Rapids. He built a cabin, a trading post and a blacksmith shop. In 1831 the federal survey of the Northwest Territory reached the Grand River. The same year, Louis Campau bought 72 acres of what is now the entire downtown business district of Grand Rapids. He purchased it from the federal government for $90 and named his tract Grand Rapids. Fertile land, timber and mineral resources attracted settlers to the area.

The Furniture Industry started in 1838 and the settlement had incorporated itself as a village. In 1845, 1,510 people lived there and in 1850, the village of Grand Rapids became the city of Grand Rapids. In 1857, the Grand Rapids Gas Light Co. was providing gas for streetlights. In 1858 the railroad was built and the Widdicomb Furniture Company was founded.

In 1876, after an international exhibition in Philadelphia, Grand Rapids became recognized worldwide as a leader in the production of fine furniture. In 1880, the first hydro-electric generator was put to use on the city. In 1881, the Furniture Manufacturers Association was organized. In 1890, the Morning Press newspaper was founded.

In 1900, 87,500 people lived in the city. In 1904, a devastating spring flood in the city occurred and thousands of people left their homes. In 1911, the original Wealthy Theatre building was constructed. In 1926, regularly scheduled passenger airlines began flights from Grand Rapids. In 1945, Grand Rapids was the first city in USA to add fluoride to its drinking water. In 1968, the actress Gillian Anderson was born in the city. In 1981, the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel reopened. In 1996, the 10,834-seat multi-purpose arena "Van Andel Arena" opened. In 2003, the multi-purpose convention center "DeVos Place Convention Center" opened.

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