Station: Grand Rapids, MI

Grand Rapids was settled in 1820 as a trading post. The village was incorporated in 1838 and it became a city in 1850. Grand Rapids is the county seat of Kent County. [MPN]

Railroads entered Grand Rapids first in 1858 when the Detroit and Milwaukee (GTW) arrived from Detroit and then built west to the shore of Lake Michigan at Grand Haven. The second railroad in town was the Grand Rapids and Indiana which built north in 1867. The Lake Shore & Michigan Southern railroad arrived on the west side of the river from Allegan in 1869 followed by the Grand River Valley (Michigan Central) from Jackson in 1870. The GR&I built south to Kalamazoo in 1870 and in 1872 the Chicago & West Michigan (later Pere Marquette) arrived from Holland and then extended north towards Newaygo in the same year. Finally in 1888, the Detroit, Lansing & Northern (later PM) arrived from Ionia, the last steam railroad to arrive in Grand Rapids.


  • 1858 - D&M arrives from Detroit enroute to Grand Haven (GTW)
  • 1867 - GR&I builds north out of town (PRR)
  • 1869 - LS&MS arrives from Allegan (NYC)
  • 1870 - GR&I builds south out of town to Kalamazoo (PRR)
  • 1870 - Grand River Valley arrives from Jackson (MC)
  • 1872 - C&WM arrives from Holland (PM)
  • 1872 - C&WM extends north to Newaygo (PM)
  • 1886 - GR&I builds a branch to Muskegon (PRR)
  • 1888 - D&LN arrives from Detroit (PM)

1889 ice house. A new ice house was erected at Grand Rapids, 24' x 54'. [DL&N-1889]

1890 station. The DL&N built a new passenger station at Jefferson Avenue in Grand Rapids. [DL&N-1890]