In September 1828, that part of what had been the “Township of St. Joseph” east of the current western boundary of the county became the “County of St. Joseph.” On November 4, 1829, the territorial council issued an order for the holding of a circuit court at the house of Asahel Savery on White Pigeon Prairie, and for the establishment of a county court with the usual jurisdiction.
This date is used as the founding date of St. Joseph County. On the same day, the legislative council defined the boundaries of, and named, a number of other counties, including Barry, Branch, Calhoun, Eaton, and Kalamazoo; however, the population in their territories was too small to warrant “organizing” them as governmental entities. The following day, the territories of these five other counties, plus an additional strip of land to the north, were attached as two large townships to St. Joseph County. (See map of St. Joseph County as of October 30, 1829, on next page.) When Kalamazoo County was “organized” later in 1830, and Branch County in 1831, St. Joseph County reverted to its present boundaries. (In 1831, an adjustment was made to add the land east of the St. Joseph River to White Pigeon, later Mottville, Township.)