Under the Saginaw Treaty of 1819, the Chippewa tribes ceded 6 million acres to the United States, including the land comprising present-day Oscoda County, which was set off from Alcona County in 1881 when its population reached the level where it could support a separate government. The name "Oscoda" comes from two Chippewa words, ossin meaning pebble and mushcoda meaning large prairie. The village of "Mioe" replaced Union Corners as the county seat in 1882 when John Randall, a town cofounder, offered a village lot for he site of the courthouse. By 1883, Mio's fifty resident's supported a general store, a milliner, two attorneys and the Northern Mail newspaper. In addition to lumbering operations centered in Mio, the county was prime for raising sheep and dairy cattle.