|In the beginning Clare county belonged to the|
Chippewa Indians. They gave names to the Lakes and
Rivers: Muskegon and Assemoqua, meaning Tobacco;
Kay-Kenee meaning "Pigeon-Hawk", the name of Cla
County until it was changed by an Irish surveyor to
Clare, in memory of his own county in Ireland.
There were no Indian villages, perhaps because the
dense Cedar swamps and White Pines made it
90% percent of the land area of Michigan had been
covered with primeval forest and 60% of that was
estimated to be White Pine. The great trees towered
from one hundred and twenty five to two hundred feet
tall, three to six feet in diameter, with solid trunks of
clear timber sixty to ninety feet before the first limb. In
some regions they grew so close that the sunlight could
not penetrate the forest floor. The White Pine of
Michigan alone was valued at worth more than all the
gold of California by Billions of dollars.
Farwell is located on the southern border of Clare
County. The town was established in 1870 when the
Pere Marquette Railroad, building a line from Saginaw
to Ludington came through here. It was named after
Samuel Farwell, a resident of Utica, New York and a
well-know contractor for the building of public works.
His works include the Croton Aqueduct, which supplied New York City
with Clean Water around 1840. He was also involved in the
building of the Erie Canal. He was a major stockholder in the
Flint Pere Marquette Railway Company. His Son--in- Law,
William Potter, was employed by the railroad.
It was the first County seat, from 1871 to 1879, and was
incorporated into a village in 1879.
Today Farwell retains its small town atmosphere,
supported by small businesses and several
manufacturing firms which include the production of
vinyl and plastics, auto parts and bearings. Farwell also
plays a role in tourism, being close to the "Lakes" area
in the county.