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James W. Loewen (1942-2021)

We mourn the loss of our friend and colleague and remain committed to the work he began.



Basic Information

Type of Place
Independent City or Town
Metro Area
Politics c. 1860?
Don’t Know
Unions, Organized Labor?
Don’t Know

Sundown Town Status

Sundown Town in the Past?
Was there an ordinance?
Don't Know
Don’t Know
Year of Greatest Interest
Still Sundown?
Probably Not, Although Still Very Few Black People

Census Information

The available census data from 1860 to the present
Total White Black Asian Native Hispanic Other BHshld
1940 2520 0
1950 3056 1
1970 3465 1
1980 3672 0
1990 3,875 3,825 11 7 32 3
2000 4,224 4,080 16 21 42 6
2010 4081 20 14 44

Method of Exclusion

  • Unknown

Main Ethnic Group(s)

  • Unknown

Group(s) Excluded

  • Black


A resident of Fremont stated: “I attended a meeting for our local peace group last January. At the meeting, several older citizens (all white) came who don’t usually attend the peace meetings and they made comments about Fremont keeping out blacks, and that and they knew people in the KKK. My husband and I have lived here for 40 years and have seen very few if any families of color, some hispanics and a few asians, but no blacks. The corporate offices of Gerber Baby Food are located in Fremont, and I have heard that Dan Gerber wouldn’t hire blacks in the cannery, but I don’t know that for sure.”

A former resident of Fremont said, “Growing up in Fremont from the late 50s to early 70s, there were no black families living there that I knew of. A few lived north in White Cloud. I recall people talking about a black family moving into Fremont sometime in the late 60s and that someone had put some kind of fire/bomb in their mailbox and then they moved away. I never heard much talk about blacks or black history. In 1992, an attic full of KKK materials were found and auctioned off. Here is an article regarding KKK history in Newaygo County and the auction: http://www.mlive.com/news/muskegon/index.ssf/2011/04/new_book_looks_at_kkk_in_1920s.html.
I believe today there are very few, if any, blacks living in Fremont, and I believe that is because many racist attitudes remain.”