The history of Fremont
begins in 1855 with area Indians being the first landowners.
The first white settlers who stayed in the area were Daniel
Weaver and his family, who arrived in 1855. Their home served
as the first post office and the first public school.
In November 1855, Fremont Township
was established and named in honor of John C. Fremont, western
explorer and nominee for president of the USA by the Republican
Weaver and his fellow settlers
cleared the land in order to farm. The lumber gained from clearing
introduced them to the first major industry of the county,
lumbering. Railroads were soon constructed to move the logs
from inland locations.
The growth of the lumbering was
slowed in the 1860's by the Civil War. In 1871, Fremont experienced
a major forest fire with extensive damage to the area, especially
the lumber mills, but was able to rebuild and continued to
produce the lumber that helped build Chicago before the great
Chicago fire of 1876.
By the mid 1870's, the Gerber
family had moved to Fremont and established a tannery, which
became a major industry. In the 1890's, the lumbering industry,
the source of a major raw material for tanning, ran out of
trees and the Gerber family turned to processing area farm
produce and formed the Fremont Canning Company. In 1928 Gerber
started to manufacture baby foods. The Fremont Canning Company
soon became Gerber Baby Foods and Fremont became the home of
the world's best known baby. Gerber now controls over 70% of
the U.S. baby food market. The Gerber Fremont plant produces
baby food for over 20 foreign countries.
Early in the 1870's, Dutch immigrant
families began moving to Fremont from Holland and Muskegon.
As a result, there continues to be an ethnic enrichment of
Today Fremont is home to 4,613
people of all nationalities who are attracted by major industries.
Fremont is privileged to have quality of life with excellent
schools and medical resources.