Bass River Landing was located on a high gravel bluff on the Grand River west of the mouth of the Bass River. Later known as the Village of Bass River, this farming community included a saw mill, general store and a number of houses. Bass River citizens operated summer resorts which were popular with residents of Grand Rapids, Chicago and as far away as St. Louis. However as time went on, the site became most known for the excellent gravel it contained. Mining interests supplanted the community; which was bought out and literally undermined.

Gravel mining began in the 1880's and slowly the land around the village was eaten away by steam shovels. A mining company called Construction Aggregates began operations in 1920 and operated large scale gravel mining until 1976 with river barges hauling gravel to Grand Haven, where it was processed and loaded onto freighters for many destinations.

Gravel from this site has been used for many prominent building footings in Chicago and other cities in the Midwest, not to mention providing the material for almost all of Ottawa County's early roads.

In the 1960's, mining also yielded two startling artifacts - a large fossil bone that was determined to be part of a prehistoric ‘Mammoth'; and also the tooth of a Mammoth. The bone is currently at the Michigan State University Museum; the tooth resides with the Grand Rapids Museum.

The property was acquired by the State of Michigan in 1994 and today is a 1,665 acre undeveloped state park known as the Bass River Recreation Area.

Sources: Donald W. Linebaugh, Dr. Carl Bajema , James Ponshair, Marjorie Viveen, Wallace K Ewing; Olive Wilhems Gleans, Ruth Bethke Horton