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Branch is an unincorporated community on US 10 on the boundary between Mason and Lake at 43°56’45″N 86°02’21″W. The community shares its name with Branch Township in Mason, but is also within Sweetwater Township in Lake. It was founded about 1873 by Benjamin F. Barnett, who built a lumbermen’s hotel. The Pere Marquette Railway later ran the hotel and made it a station. Barnett became the first postmaster of Branch, in Mason, on February 1, 1876, named for the township, which in turn is named for the north branch of the Pere Marquette River. On October 1, 1962, the post office was transferred to Lake. The Branch ZIP code 49402 serves most of Sweetwater township, as well as in Lake, the western parts of Sauble Township and Lake Township and a small area of Webber Township. In Mason, the ZIP code serves the eastern parts of Branch Township and Sheridan Township, most of Logan Township, and small areas of Meade Township, Eden Township, and Custer Township and a small area of Colfax Township in Oceana.