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Gibson Township Main Page


Picture contributed by Carlie Klumpp.
Township Hall: 7214 Main Road
Post Office: Bentley, MI 48613
Phone:

Gibson Township was organized on April 1, 1888,
becoming the thirteenth township of Bay County.
{View} historical maps reference.

The township is named after Tommy Gibson, one of the founding settlers whose log-cabin was located on what is now the northwest corner of Grim and Flajole roads.

Geographic area at time of organization:

Created from the western half of Pinconning Township, consisting of township 18 north of range 3 east.

In 1903 Representative J.J. McCarthy of Standish, Arenac County, introduced a bill which he was able to get passed in the absence of representatives Washer and Sheldon of Bay County, which detached Gibson Township from Bay County and attached it to Arenac County. The bill was signed by Governor Bliss to the chagrin of Bay County officials, who mounted a legal battle petitioning the 18th Judicial Court to review the matter. Judge T.F. Shepard agreed with their petition and Gibson was returned to Bay County. The decision was later heard by the Michigan Supreme Court, which upheld the lower courts decision.

Petitioners for the township were:

Abbott, W.B., Dr.
Barie, J.
Bell, A.E.
Bentley, Frank E.
Bentley, M.G.
Bentley, O.S.
Bingham, Charles L.
Burlingame, E.M.
Carter, William

Davis, O.G.
DeGraw, Z.W.
Dowley, M.
Edmunds, Abram
Edmunds, J.
Edmunds, Peter
Edmunds, William
Gardner, H.
Johnson, James

McClinchey, Samuel
Morris, S.S.
Peley, L.A.
Peterson, C.
Shirley, W.J.
Shook, H.
Stanton, Garrett J
Stewart, B.W.
Walsh, Ed

The township's first elections were held on October 18, 1888 at the school house in School District No. 5 with the following officers elected:

- Supervisor: Murray Bentley
- Clerk: Edward Walsh
- Treasurer: Smith Bowers
- School Inspectors: Andrew Faulds, Lafayette Dento

Historical population:

  • 1894: 494 residents
  • 1900: 761 residents
  • 2000: 1,245 residents
  • Branches of the Pine and Saganing rivers traverse the township in and east - west direction. The township shares a border with Arenac County to its north and to its west and Gladwin to its west. Historically, residents of closely aligned themselves with Arenac County as originally they were a part of that county prior to the formation of Bay County in 1857. A point that was raised by residents of both areas in attempts to have Gibson returned to Arenac County.

    Community Resources:
    Government/Education Other
  • None at this time.

    Education:
  • None at this time.
  • 1906 Plat Map
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    Community Images

    Bentley Methodist Church

    Original church building built in 1892, which was torn down in 1918 and its materials were use to erect current church on Main St.
    Bentley Downtown (abt. 1913)
    View north of downtown area. On the left are railroad tracks where a depot and other stores were located. To the far right in back is the Methodist Church.

    Gibson Twp. Cemetery

    Brown & Flajole roads, Bentley.
    --- The cemetery dates back to 1889 when it was located in a wet area west of Bentley. It was later relocated to its present location, on property that was higher and owned then by Frank Bentley. -- (Contributed by Angeline Pieniozek.)
    {View} Map of cemetery
    {View pdf} Listing of burials.
    Biographies:
    Bentley, Oscar F.

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