Trowbridge – Ingham County’s “Lost” Community
Anyone who has lived in the Lansing/East Lansing area knows Trowbridge Road. What many people don't know is that there was once a tiny community called Trowbridge that failed to grow into a village or town.
The community of Trowbridge only had a handful of people and an old hotel that was later converted into a home for a couple and their six kids. Other than that, there wasn't much more except for the railroad towers.
Trowbridge was also called “Trowbridge Station” or Trowbridge Tower” and sat on the 'diamond' where the two railway tracks met & crossed each other: the Grand Trunk and the Pere Marquette. If a PM train was coming through, the GT had to wait, and vice versa.
First to be laid was the Pere Marquette in the early 1870s. Grand Trunk followed in the late 1870s. In 1880, a depot was constructed and named 'Trowbridge' after former railroad president Charles Trowbridge. Eventually there was a grange hall, tree nursery, and coal company. The coal company sat where the Amtrak depot is today.
In 1930, the original depot was torn down and replaced with a control tower.
For a while, Trowbridge Station was called “Chicago Junction”, as it was one of the best places for Michiganders to get to Chicago. Both control towers have been demolished.
So, this little train station never did get the chance to become a regular Michigan village like so many other railway stops did.....it simply got swallowed up as a part of East Lansing, thanks to the continuing growth of Michigan Agricultural College, which became Michigan State University.
In the photo gallery below are some old atlases that list Trowbridge so you can see for yourself...