Marlborough Historic District

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Marlborough Historic District
Great Northern Portland Cement Co Marlborough MI.jpg
Great Northern Portland Cement Co, c. 1907
Marlborough Historic District is located in Michigan
Marlborough Historic District
Marlborough Historic District is located in the United States
Marlborough Historic District
LocationPleasant Plains Township, Michigan
Coordinates43°51′40″N 85°50′17″W / 43.86111°N 85.83806°W / 43.86111; -85.83806Coordinates: 43°51′40″N 85°50′17″W / 43.86111°N 85.83806°W / 43.86111; -85.83806
Area80 acres (32 ha)
NRHP reference #72000630[1]
Significant dates
Added to NRHPSeptember 7, 1972
Designated MSHSOctober 10, 1971[2]

The Marlborough Historic District is a cement factory located on James Road in Pleasant Plains Township, Michigan. It was designated a Michigan State Historic Site in 1971[2] and listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1972.[1]


In the 1890s, the Great Northern Portland Cement Company constructed a cement plant at this site to produce cement from the local marl.[2] Production boomed, and in 1902, the company also began construction of a nearby village, dubbed Marlborough, for plant workers. By 1905, Marlborough had 400 citizens.[3] However, problems quickly arose, as the produced cement was inferior, production was costly, and the enormous energy demands of the plant required construction of the largest power plant in the Lower Peninsula.[2] The Great Northern Portland Cement Company entered receivership in 1906, and the village houses were sold for salvage. The plant was dynamited for scrap iron,[2] and by 1910 only the ruins of the plant remained.[3]


The ruins of the Great Northern Portland Cement Company plant and the nearby town of Marlborough are spread over an 80-acre (32 ha) plot of land.[2] Marlborough once contained 72 houses, an opera house, school and post office, and an 88-room hotel.[3] none remain.[2] The cement plant was constructed almost entirely using reinforced concrete; the storage warehouse was several hundred feet in length, and the plant held six kilns and fourteen grinding mills.


  1. ^ a b "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. July 9, 2010.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g "Marlborough Historic District". Michigan State Housing Development Authority: Historic Sites Online. Archived from the original on October 21, 2013. Retrieved March 13, 2013.
  3. ^ a b c Lake County Historical Society (2009), Lake County, 1871-1960, Arcadia Publishing, pp. 7, 46–48, ISBN 9780738560175

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