Love words? Sign up for our Word of the Day!
city, seat (1830) of Kalamazoo county, southwestern Michigan, U.S. It lies along the Kalamazoo River, some 50 miles (80 km) south of Grand Rapids. A fur-trading post known as Kikalamazoo-a Potawatomi name meaning "mirage," "reflecting river," or "boiling river," referring to the rapids-was already established at the site where Titus Bronson built a cabin in 1829. The settlement, first known as Bronson, was renamed in 1836. The presence of a government land office and the arrival of the Michigan Central Railroad (1846) encouraged growth. In the 1850s Dutch farmers made the locality famous for celery; later it became known for the cultivation of annual bedding plants.