The American Cyclopædia (1879)/Jackson (Michigan)
JACKSON, a city and the county seat of Jackson co., Michigan, on both banks of Grand river, near its source, 74 m. W. of Detroit and 36 m. S. by E. of. Lansing; pop. in 1850, 2,363; in 1860, 4,799; in 1870, 11,447, of whom 2,448 were foreigners. It is lighted with gas, and has paved streets, water works on the Holly system, and an efficient police force. There are two fine hotels and many excellent business structures. Several of the churches are handsome edifices, and the two union school houses are large and well arranged. An iron bridge has recently been built across the river. The Michigan state penitentiary, the buildings and walls of which are of stone, is situated here. It occupies an enclosed area of eight acres. The main building is 500 ft. long, 57 broad, and 44 high. The city derives its chief importance from its position at the intersection of six railroads, viz.: the Michigan Central (main line); the Jackson branch of the Lake Shore and Michigan Southern; the Fort Wayne, Jackson, and Saginaw; and the Jackson, Lansing, and Saginaw, the Grand River Valley, and the Air-Line divisions of the Michigan Central. The last named company has lately erected here the finest passenger depot in the state; the building is of brick and stone, 294 ft. by 40, and is finely fitted up. The company has also extensive machine shops and other structures here. In the N. part of the city are two mines of bituminous coal, and a third 2 or 3 m. beyond the city limits, which yield a valuable product. The river furnishes good water power, and there are manufactories of chemicals, bricks, drain pipe, fire bricks, agricultural implements, wagons, and furniture, fonnderies, machine shops, a large rolling mill and nut, bolt, and spike factory, breweries, flour mills, planing mills, potteries, &c. The value of manufactures in 1872 was about $3,000,000. The sales of merchandise amounted to $3,230,500. There are four banks with an aggregate capital of $350,000. Besides the union schools there are eight ward school houses. The schools are graded, and in 1872 included two high, five grammar, and seven primary schools, with 40 teachers and 2,000 pupils. There are also a business college, a German Lutheran school, a young men's library of 2,500 volumes, two daily and two weekly newspapers, and 13 churches. Jackson became a city in 1857.