Fouch was originally established by an African-American, by the name of Smith, who settled on the south end of Lake Leelanau sometime before the Civil War. Smith built a dock, known as Smith’s landing where settlers who lived on Lake Leelanau could dock and then walk into Traverse City to buy supplies. Hardly anything is known of Smith, and it is said that he only stayed in the area for four or five years.
In 1866 the 21 year old John R. Fouch, a Civil War veteran, arrived from Ohio. Fouch homesteaded 260 acres of land in Elmwood township. The acreage included Smith’s landing. Fouch built a small summer resort at Smith’s landing, a post office and railroad station.
In 1892 the Manistee and Northeastern Railroad came through Fouch from Solon to Traverse City. The stop at Fouch allowed people to travel by boat to Smith’s landing and take the train into Traverse City, allowing them maximum time in the city. In 1905 Fouch built a resort hotel and named it Carp Lake House. The resort burned in 1915 and was never rebuilt. In 1927 Fouch sold the land to Daniel and Julia Perrin, of Detroit. They established a cabin colony and called it Perrin’s Landing. The Manistee and Northeastern Railroad was abandoned in 1934, taking away the importance of the town. Today Fouch/Perrin’s Landing is nothing more than a ghost town.