The Clinton County Historical Society was founded in 1974 as an off-shoot of the Bicentennial interest in local history. The Clinton County Pioneer Society, a direct ancestor of the Society, was disbanded in the 1930's.
The Society was organized with Robert Conn as chairman and Hila Bross as secretary pro-tem. By 1980 the organization had grown to over 200 members.
The constitution was adopted in April of 1974. The first elected officers were: Douglas Carpenter, president; Robert Barnes, vice-president; Faye Hanson, recording secretary; Jan Seperic, corresponding secretary; and John Rumbaugh, treasurer. The Society's first activities centered around the "I Was Here in 1876" signs which were purchased by those who had homes or buildings at least a century old. The History of Shiawassee and Clinton Counties, Michigan 1880, was reprinted.
Perhaps the most visible project of the Society to date is the Paine-Gillam-Scott Museum located just west of the Clinton County Courthouse. One the finest house museums in the area, this local attraction truly has become a part of the community with thousands of visitors coming to the museum for special events and to browse and view changing displays. The annual Victorian Christmas is a highlight of the season in St. Johns.
The Genealogists help large numbers of people research and write about their Clinton County ancestors. An archive is maintained in DeWitt township.