Superior Township, Washtenaw County, Michigan

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Superior Charter Township, Michigan
Charter Township of Superior
Township Hall along N. Prospect Road
Township Hall along N. Prospect Road
Location within Washtenaw County
Location within Washtenaw County
Superior Township is located in Michigan
Superior Township
Superior Township
Location within the state of Michigan
Coordinates: 42°17′38″N 83°36′23″W / 42.29389°N 83.60639°W / 42.29389; -83.60639Coordinates: 42°17′38″N 83°36′23″W / 42.29389°N 83.60639°W / 42.29389; -83.60639
CountryUnited States
 • SupervisorKenneth Schwartz
 • ClerkLynette Findley
 • Total35.6 sq mi (92.1 km2)
 • Land35.2 sq mi (91.2 km2)
 • Water0.3 sq mi (0.9 km2)
820 ft (250 m)
 • Total13,058
 • Density370/sq mi (140/km2)
Time zoneUTC-5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST)UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP code(s)
48105 (Ann Arbor)
48170 (Plymouth)
48197, 48198 (Ypsilanti)
Area code(s)734
FIPS code26-77560[1]
GNIS feature ID1627141[2]
WebsiteOfficial website

Superior Township, officially the Charter Township of Superior, is a charter township in Washtenaw County in the U.S. state of Michigan. The population was 13,058 at the 2010 census.[3]

The unincorporated community of Dixboro is within the township, near its western edge. The township is surrounded by the nearby, larger communities of Canton Township, Ypsilanti, and Ann Arbor. The township is largely rural north of Geddes Road, which has been designated by the township government as the northern limit of high density development. The Hyundai America Technical Center is located in the township.[4]


There are two unincorporated communities in the township.

  • Dixboro is on the western edge of Superior Township and was founded in 1824, by Captain John Dix, a retired sea captain. Dix purchased 450 acres (1.8 km2) of land in section 18 of what was then Township Two in the District of Detroit, Wayne County, Michigan Territory. In 1827, Dix filed a plat for 60 lots around the village square. Although the community prospered and had its own post office for many years, it never incorporated to form a municipal government. The railroad bypassed Dixboro, and Ann Arbor soon quickly outpaced Dixboro. Dixboro is situated east of the junction of Plymouth Road and Dixboro Road at 42°18′44″N 83°39′22″W / 42.31222°N 83.65611°W / 42.31222; -83.65611.[5] The community's most notable features are the Dixboro General Store,[6] founded in 1840, and the Humane Society of Huron Valley, founded in 1896.
  • Frains Lake is a small rural farming community in Superior Township, northeast of Ann Arbor.[7] It is also the name of the small lake, 660 feet (200 m) wide by 1,600 feet (500 m) long, from which the hamlet gets its name.[8] The community is in the area where Plymouth Road intersects with the northern terminus of Prospect Road, northeast of the village of Dixboro at 42°19′44″N 83°37′1″W / 42.32889°N 83.61694°W / 42.32889; -83.61694.[9] Road signs spell the community's name as "Frains Lake" without an apostrophe, but it is sometimes named "Frain's Lake" or "Frain Lake." The lake is at an elevation of 827 feet (252 m)[8] and appears in the Denton U.S. Geological Map.[7] The Pray Cemetery and the historic Esek Pray House are located to the east of Frains Lake; inside the community is the historic Frains Lake School, which was constructed in 1872.[10] The lake and community were named after Michael Frain who came to the area in 1835, the date of establishment for the community given on the road signs on Plymouth Road.[11]


According to the United States Census Bureau, the township has a total area of 35.6 square miles (92.1 km2), of which 35.2 square miles (91.2 km2) is land, and 0.35 square miles (0.9 km2), or 0.98%, is water.[12]

The Superior Dam is located in the southwest corner of Superior Township.[13]


As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 10,740 people, 3,961 households, and 2,911 families residing in the township. The population density was 303.7 per square mile (117.3/km2). There were 4,097 housing units at an average density of 115.9 per square mile (44.7/km2). The racial makeup of the township was 63.01% White, 30.81% African American, 2.30% Asian, 1.83% Hispanics or Latinos, 0.47% Native American, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.71% from other races, and 2.67% from two or more races.

There were 3,961 households, out of which 38.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.0% were married couples living together, 16.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.5% were non-families. 21.1% of all households were made up of individuals, and 3.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.67, and the average family size was 3.10.

In the township the population was spread out, with 28.9% under the age of 18, 8.6% from 18 to 24, 29.2% from 25 to 44, 25.5% from 45 to 64, and 7.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females, there were 89.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 85.3 males.

The median income for a household in the township was $56,622, and the median income for a family was $64,916. Males had a median income of $50,351 versus $35,417 for females. The per capita income for the township was $31,093. About 8.4% of families and 9.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 15.0% of those under age 18 and 7.3% of those age 65 or over.


K–12 education[edit]

Superior Township is served by three public school districts: Ypsilanti Community Schools (YCS), Ann Arbor Public Schools, and Plymouth-Canton Community Schools. Formerly Ypsilanti Public Schools and Willow Run Community Schools served portions of the township,[14] prior to their 2013 merger into YCS.[15]

Notable person[edit]

Dixboro Ghost[edit]

In 1846, Isaac Van Woert swore in an affidavit to a justice of the peace in Ann Arbor that he had been visited by the ghost of Martha Mullholland, who told him she had been murdered by a doctor at the behest of her brother-in-law, James Mullholland, to keep her from returning to Canada, and who had committed another murder and dumped the body in Frains Lake. His claims were investigated but were not substantiated. This spectral visitation would later become known as the "Dixboro Ghost.[16][17][18]



  1. ^ a b "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  2. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Superior Township, Washtenaw County, Michigan
  3. ^ "Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (DP-1): Superior charter township, Washtenaw County, Michigan". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 9, 2012.
  4. ^
  5. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Superior Township, Washtenaw County, Michigan
  6. ^ Dixboro General Store creates 'holiday feeling' with Santa visits,, December 18, 2010
  7. ^ a b "Frain Lake (in Washtenaw County, MI) Populated Place Profile". Mi Hometown Locator. HTL. Retrieved March 26, 2012.
  8. ^ a b Carney, H. J. (1982). "Algal Dynamics and Tropohic Interactions in the Recent History of Frains Lake, Michigan". Ecology. 63 (6): 1814–1826. doi:10.2307/1940123.
  9. ^ Chapman, Chas. C. (1881). History of Washtenaw County Michigan. Chicago: Chas. C. Chapman & Co. p. 1062. OCLC 8448226.
  10. ^ Economic Development & Energy Department. "Esek pray trail" (PDF). Heritage Tours. Washtenaw County, Michigan. Retrieved March 26, 2012.
  11. ^ Ziegler, Alice. "The Ruthruff Family". Washtenaw County Historical Society. Retrieved March 26, 2012.
  12. ^ "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001): Superior charter township, Washtenaw County, Michigan". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 9, 2012.
  13. ^ Huron River Watershed Council (November 2015). "Superior Dam" (PDF). Retrieved April 20, 2020.
  14. ^ "About Us". Superior Township. Retrieved 2009-06-09. There are four school districts in the Township: Willow Run, Ann Arbor, Plymouth-Canton and Ypsilanti.
  15. ^ Miller, Janet. "End of an era: Willow Run School District has final day of classes" (Archive). The Ann Arbor News. Friday June 7, 2013. Retrieved on September 1, 2015.
  16. ^ "Village of Dixboro, Oak Grove Cemetery". StrangeUSA. Retrieved March 26, 2012.
  17. ^ Chapman, Chas. C. (1881). History of Washtenaw County Michigan. Chicago: Chas. C. Chapman & Co. p. 1072. OCLC 8448226.
  18. ^ Treml, William B. (October 31, 1972). "Will Dixboro Ghost Make Hen Rounds Tonight?". Ann Arbor News. Retrieved March 26, 2012.

External links[edit]