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Mayfield Township was first organized in 1843 when John B. Evans, John Ryan and Martin Stiles gave notice to the township's inhabitants that a town meeting would be held on April 17 at the school near Stiles' home. 34 freeholders met that day, elected the township's first officers, and voted to raise $125 to pay expenses and establish a burial ground. The cemetery was later named after Stiles.
Six years after it was organized, Mayfield Township was attached to Lapeer Township in a move by the state legislature. That arrangement continued until March 13, 1869, when the township was reorganized.
In the years following, the lumber industry grew and by 1874, there were ten saw mills operating in Mayfield Township. The success of the lumber industry resulted in three thriving villages within the township: Fish Lake, Five Lakes and Millville. As land was cleared of its trees, it was sold to individuals for homesteads and farms. By 1884, the village of Fish Lake was abandoned. The census of that year reported no saw, shingle, or lathe mills still operating.
Much of the formerly prime lumbering lands in the township were bought by the Michigan Department of Conservation in 1944. The Michigan State Game Area comprises much of the land once owned by Mayfield Township's early settlers.
Besides the mills at Millville, the township's longest running business may have been the Callis brick making plant. William Callis moved to Mayfield in the mid-1850s. The plant on the family homestead was built about that time and operated for many years. The home Callis built for his son, William Elmer, at the corner of Callis and Davis Lake Roads still stands.
Mayfield Township has also been home to two of the most successful manufacturing businesses in Lapeer County's history. In 1962, Vesely's Apache camping trailer was named Michigan's Consumer Product of the Year. At one time, the plant was the world's largest camping trailer factory, producing up to 2,000 per month. Next, the plant was home to Durakon Industries, which manufactured pickup truck bedliners.
Two historical sites in the township recognized with special markers from the Lapeer County Historical Society are the former villages of Millville and Fish Lake.