Clinton County, Michigan


1015 Baese Court, P.O. Box 136, Ovid, MI 48866

Phone: (989)834-2838  Fax: (989)834-2710


According to information in the 1980 History of Clinton County, Ovid Township was one of the last in the county to be settled, with the exception of single families here and there.


While the history of Ovid Township is closely linked in many ways with that of the village of Ovid which was incorporated in March 1869, the little burgh of Shepardsville also played a role in the township's development.  Like Ovid to its east, Shepardsville was a station stop on the Detroit and Milwaukee Railroad line - thanks to the efforts of William Shepard who homesteaded the land there and later deeded it as Shepardsville in October 1866.  A time of relative prosperity followed, led by the establishment of a grist-mill, stave-factory, several stores and a hotel.  Unfortunately, a series of fires spelled the demise of the unincorporated village - the stave-mill burned in 1871; a business block of three stores and several shops was destroyed by fire in 1872-73; and a cheese factory that was established in 1878 also burned two years later.


The red-brick schoolhouse in Shepardsville had maintained its educational use as an Amish School for a short time.  The building is now the site of The Good Shepherd Chapel and Hall. The Shepardsville United Methodist Church still continues to be very active in the little burgh.  Just south of Shepardsville near the intersection of Shepardsville Road and M-21, a monument testifies to the fact that the first professional football game was played there July 4, 1895.  Leo Grove had learned and played the sport in college and organized the event upon his return home.


Ovid Township is also home to the annual “Blessing of the Bikers” held each May by the Church of the Living Word.  Nearly 500 bikers from all over the state often roll into town and begin the day with a biker church service followed by an all-you-can eat pig roast for everyone.


Many changes have taken place since the development of Ovid Township in 1840. Many of the small farms along the southern part of the township in sections 34 and 35 were purchased by the State of Michigan to develop Sleepy Hollow State Park which includes a man-made lake called Lake Ovid; the railroad line between Ionia and Owosso, owned by Central Michigan Rail Road and runs thru Ovid Township, was abandoned in 1991; the Maple Leaf Manufactured Home Park was developed in Section 11 on M21 and Hollister Road in late 1999 and early 2000.  The Maple Grove Cemetery Association abandoned the Maple Grove Cemetery in 1999, and the Maple Grove Cemetery Authority was incorporated on March 6, 2000 between Ovid Township, Village of Ovid (both in Clinton County) and Middlebury Township (in Shiawassee County) to take over ownership of the cemetery.


The Michigan Milk Producers Association (MMPA), based in Novi, built a dairy processing facility in the Village of Ovid; after the completion in June 2010 of a $64 million, 14,000 square foot expansion, today this facility processes about 3.5 million to 5 million pounds of milk daily and supports thousands of dairy farmers across Michigan.  The expansion also created an estimated 176 additional employment opportunities.  In addition to milk, products made at the Ovid facility include butter, nonfat dry milk, cream, condensed skim milk, and other dairy products.  The Ovid plant operates 24 hours a day and processes between 68 and 75 trucks daily, 365 days a year.  Established in 1916, MMPA is the largest dairy cooperative in Michigan, is the 11th largest dairy cooperative in the United States, and is a member owned and operated dairy cooperative serving over 2,300 dairy farmers in Michigan, Ohio, Indiana and Wisconsin.  The Ovid plant facility received the 2010 Plant of the Year award from Dairy Foods Magazine.




Shepardsville United Methodist Church; Holy Family Catholic Church; United Church of Ovid; Calvary Baptist Church; First Baptist Church; Church of the Living Word; Trinity Fellowship, Mt. Hope Church Gospel Barn;  Sonshine Community Church and The Good Shepard Chapel & Hall.




Besides farming, located within the incorporated Village of Ovid, are many businesses that employ residents within the township.  The largest business is, as noted above, the Michigan Milk Producers facility.  Other businesses include Tom’s Western Store, Ovid Iron & Metal, Research Tool, Clinton Machine Company, Ovid Machine Shop, Village Food Pride, Dollar General, Myers Trucking, and the Ovid Healthcare Center to name a few, plus many smaller businesses.


As with many communities in these hard economic times, many challenges lie ahead for the future of Ovid Township.  We continue to research ways to preserve the farmland and still grow, while providing the same services to our constituents with fewer funds, as well as maintain our local roads.