Grand Rapids (Michigan)

Kent County


Grand Rapids, Michigan, also known as Furniture City (Furniture City ), is a city in the United States. It is the county seat ( county seat ) of Kent County in the southwestern part of the state. The city currently has a population of 193 780 (as of 2005).


The territory of the later Grand Rapids was first settled after 1820 by Christian missionaries and fur traders, who generally lived peacefully with the Grand River near the sedentary tribe of Odawa.

The official founder of Grand Rapids ' was Louis Campau, who from November 1826 with the Indians engaged in trade there. Immigrants from New York and New England came to 1830.

Grand Rapids was officially launched on May 1, 1850 to the city by the then 2,686 inhabitants comprehensive community voted for the adoption of the city charter.

In the second half of the 19th century, the city became an important center of the timber industry and the U.S. leader in the field of furniture production. The city also became a center of Dutch immigration in the 19th century.

After Newsweek magazine Grand Rapids due to declining population trends described as " dying city ", the 9 minutes in length at present ( June 2011) was in Grand Rapids with the participation of more than 5,000 inhabitants in May 2011 turned longest lipdub world and on the video platform YouTube published. It is a version of the folk-rock - classic " American Pie " by Don McLean.


The citizens of Grand Rapids in 1916 led the Council - Manager system. Since then, the political responsibility between the mayor and the city manager hired, who is appointed by the Council divided. The Council has only legislative function in the other.

In Grand Rapids, the former Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards on 14 May 2008 announced its support for the presidential candidacy of Barack Obama.


Grand Rapids has partnerships with five cities:

  • Japan Omihachiman, Japan ( 1986)
  • Poland Bielsko -Biała, Poland ( 1991)
  • Italy Perugia, Italy ( 1993)
  • Ghana Ga District, Ghana ( 1994)
  • Mexico Zapopan, Mexico ( 2008)


Grand Rapids is located in 188 m height on the Grand River, where once a set of rapids ( English: Rapids ) were.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Statistics, the city has a total area of ​​117.4 km ².


Grand Rapids has long been a center of the furniture and the automotive industry. More recently, some biotechnology companies were added, in addition to the Van Andel Medical Institute, and the new Cook - Devos Medical Training Facility, which is part of the Grand Valley State University, as well as the new medical training facility that is associated with Michigan State University.

At Grand Rapids is the Gerald R. Ford International Airport.



  • Gerald Ford (1913-2006), 38th U.S. President ( August 8, 1974 until January 20, 1977), his tomb is located in Grand Rapids

Sons and daughters of the town

  • Del Shannon (1934-1990), singer
  • Stanley Ketchel (1886-1910), Boxer
  • Stephen Goosson (1889-1973), Oscar- award winning Production Designer
  • Leo Sowerby (1895-1968), composer
  • Richard DeVos ( born 1926 ), founder and owner of Amway
  • Edmund Casimir Szoka (* 1927), Archbishop Emeritus of Detroit
  • Joseph Crescent McKinney (1928-2010), Auxiliary Bishop in Grand Rapids
  • Roger Chaffee (1935-1967), astronaut (Apollo 1)
  • Ken Medema ( born 1942 ), composer and singer
  • Paul Schrader ( born 1946 ), screenwriter and film director
  • Chris Van Allsburg ( b. 1949 ), artist and book author ( Jumanji, The Polar Express)
  • Fergie Frederiksen (1951-2014), singer, including the band Toto
  • Tony Tucker (born 1958 ), boxer
  • Antonia Franceschi ( born 1960 ), a ballet dancer, choreographer and actress
  • Anthony Kiedis (born 1962 ), co-founder, lyricist and singer of the Red Hot Chili Peppers
  • Andy Richter (born 1966 ), entertainer
  • Stacy Haiduk ( born 1968 ), actress
  • James Toney ( b. 1968 ), Boxer
  • Matt Keeslar (born 1972 ), actor
  • Floyd Mayweather ( born 1977 ), boxer
  • Chris Kaman (* 1982 ), German basketball player
  • Dathan Ritzenhein (* 1982 ), long-distance runner
  • Kyle Visser ( born 1985 ), basketball player
  • Taylor Lautner (* 1992), actor

Air table