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Fun Facts

Here are some fun facts about Parshallville. Please help us grow this list by submitting a fun fact of your own. Just use the Contact form to submit your fact. Thanks!

According to a long-time local man, the pond used to have lots of big fish and recreation. There were wooden rowboats for rent on the pond, upstream across from the “peninsula”. Also there were two docks and people came to fish the pond. Fish caught included: 5 and 6 pound bass; crappies (speckled bass); northern pike; catfish; blue gills; warmouth bass; walleye. There used to be no fence under the mill around the wheel, and the kids spear fished there. Crayfish were caught at night by the kids, using flashlights. It was an eerie sight seeing those lights below the dam. In the daytime, the kids stood under the dam, getting sprayed by the force of water. (I remember this-my kids did it.) Bullhead and catfish were planted in the pond. The walleye in our pond went to Lake Shannon when the dam broke.

The Purple Gang, notorious Prohibition bootleggers from Detroit, owned a farm in Parshallville on Allen Rd. It was common knowledge amongst the locals that the mobsters stayed at the farm, which was one of many hideouts in rural Michigan. Chicago mobster Al Capone was rumored to have visited the farm.

"Dogpatch" was once a nickname for Parshallville. People would come to drop off their unwanted dogs, creating a population of strays. The name was a reference to the satirical comic strip Li'l Abner that appeared in newspapers from 1934-1977 featuring colorful citizens of fictional Dogpatch, Kentucky, set in the Appalachian hills.

Local folklore has it that Charlie White, a descendant of Parshallville pioneer and early settler Alfred White, was Parshallville's first and last moonshiner.

When a member of the community died, the owner of the old party/grocery store on Linden Rd used to put a cigar box on the counter for people to donate money for the family. When the box appeared, everyone knew someone had died.

Church bells could be heard ringing in the village on Sundays from the white frame church on Linden Rd. It was originally Methodist-Episcopal, built in 1876, but over the years it changed denominations. It discontinued service as a church in 1990.

Migratory or seasonal Native Americans had once camped in the Parshallville area to hunt and fish. Over the years, many arrowheads have been found and collected by residents.

The front part of the old Parshallville Schoolhouse was used as an antique shop in the early 1980's. "Poor Richards" was operated by Dick and Lois Waskin.

Eleanor and Bob Conaway purchased the old Parshallville Schoolhouse in 1973 and opened an arts and crafts store, "The Craftsman." It is now used as a residence.

The Parshallville Schoolhouse became a general store when the Hartland school district consolidated, selling it in 1922 to Charlie White. He sold it in 1946 and it continued to operate as a general and implement store by several owners until the early 1970's.

The Parshallville Community Association was founded by Bill McEachern in 1997.

Parshallville singer/songwriter Carolyn Purchase was the 2009 winner of the Livingston Sensation singing competition. She, with her husband Buck and their band The Sundowners, released a CD in 2011.

There is a house in Parshallville that lies within two townships. You can literally travel from Hartland Township to Tyrone Township simply by walking into another room.

Leonard Gas, a now defunct regional Michigan-based brand, was sold at the hardware store that had been on Allen Rd. Although the building is now a private residence, the Leonard Gas advertising sign still stands in the yard.

At one time you could actually purchase a refrigerator in downtown Parshallville! The hardware store, which had been located on Allen Rd near Linden Rd, sold home appliances as late as the 1960's.

In the 1970's, the Parshallville Cider Mill was the biggest tourist attraction in Livingston County.

Chef Keith Famie, Michigan native and former contestant on Survivor II: The Australian Outback, taped an episode of his Food Network show Keith Famie's Adventures at the Parshallville Cider Mill.

Michigan born Mark Farner, Don Brewer and Mel Schacher formed a band in 1969 called Grand Funk Railroad. In 1976, they recorded their album Good Singin' Good Playin', produced by Frank Zappa, at their Parshallville Road recording studio, known as The Swamp.

On April 18, 1975 heavy rains caused a flash flood that wiped out the Parshallville dam and Parshallville Road, virtually cutting the village in two.

Parshallville's Baptist church, a wooden structure built in 1855, burned to the ground in 1875, taking the church records with it. A new brick church was built in its place, which stands today as a private residence.

Isaac and Seraphina Parshall sold land for a church and cemetery to the First Baptist Church and Society of Hartland for one dollar in 1853.

During the 1870's, Parshallville was a thriving business community with two general stores, a grist mill, cider mill, shoe shop, four blacksmiths, a foundry, cheese factory, post office, and a doctor's office.

In February of 1938, Ore Creek flooded, washing away the dam and Parshallville Road. A swinging footbridge temporarily replaced the road so residents could cross the creek to get to their homes.

Christy Borth, a reporter for the Detroit Free Press and a correspondent for Time magazine, moved to Parshallville with his wife Evangeline in 1936.

The Tom Walker Grist Mill, now known as the Parshallville Cider Mill, is a Michigan Registered Historic Site.

Parshallville Founders Isaac and Seraphina Parshall were pioneers from New York who settled along Ore Creek in what is now Hartland Township on October 10, 1836 to build their first homestead and a grist mill.

Isaac Parshall, the founder of Parshallville, was born in Chemung County, New York on February 5, 1798.

The village of Parshallville lies within both Tyrone and Hartland Townships.

Fun Fact

At one time you could actually purchase a refrigerator in downtown Parshallville! The hardware store, which had been located on Allen Rd near Linden Rd, sold home appliances as late as the 1960's.