This town was named after Athens, New York, where many of its early residents came from. Its first settler was Isaac Crossett, who built a house here in 1832.
Athens Township is a civil township of southwest Calhoun County in the U.S. state of Michigan, about 15 miles south of Battle Creek. It is part of the Battle Creek, Michigan Metropolitan Statistical Area.
Euro-American settlers first came to what would become Athens Township in 1831. Unlike in many other parts of Michigan the Potawatamie were never fully driven out, although their Reservation was dissolved in 1833. The first Athens Township Meeting was held in 1835. As of 1913 there were about 60 Potawatamie residents of Athens Township, out of about 1500 residents. Based on the 1910 US census for Athens Township and Village there were 1537 residents, of whom 5 were listed as mulattos (four of them children of a mulatto mother and white father) and 69 were listed as Indians. Of the 69 Indians, 40 were living the Indian Village Reservation that at that time existed in Athens Township. At least two of the Indians were Ottawas and not Potawatamies.