February 10, 2019

To celebrate the 10th anniversary of Hoffman Estates in 1969, the village put out this neat little booklet called Community From Cornfields: The Story of the Village of Hoffman Estates.

It is 24 pages and includes everything from a brief history of the village to blurbs on the various village departments to lists of government officials and board members to a list of Hoffman Estates churches.

The library is fortunate to have two copies of the original document that went out to the Thomas Guiney household on Northview Lane and the Carl Soderholm household on Bonita Drive. The most interesting part of the little booklet, though, are the surprising number of photos that I’ve included here for you to check out.

This is a photo of the Gieseke family farm that was originally located off of Bode Road and is currently the site of the Children’s Advocacy Center, St. Hubert Catholic Church and School, Alliance Fellowship Church and Hoffman Estates Fire Department Station 21.

The Giesekes sold the farm in 1943 to Arthur and Dorothy Dalton Hammerstein. They lived there until 1954 when Arthur passed away and Dorothy subsequently sold the farm to Jack Hoffman of F & S Construction.

This photo probably looks familiar to you. It is the Gieseke/Hammerstein house that became the Hoffman Estates village hall and is today’s Children’s Advocacy Center. When Dorothy Hammerstein sold the property to F&S, they used the house as their field headquarters. F&S then relinquished the property to the Village in 1959 and they adapted the house as their municipal center.

At the time of the printing of this booklet, the village was trying to decide what to do with the property as they felt they had outgrown the building and needed a more modern structure. “The Trustees are reluctant to tear down more than a hundred years of history, however, our growing community requires a decision soon.” To their great credit they preserved the house and it exists as one of the oldest structures in the village today.

It was a bit puzzling to discern what we are looking at in this aerial photo–except that the big grove of trees had to be either Sarah’s Grove or Walnut Grove. It took a bit but the thing I kept going back to is the diagonal road that crosses through the upper middle of the photo. It had to be Illinois Avenue. When I looked more closely I could see Schaumburg Road in the middle of the photo on the far right. It bisects Sarah’s Grove which puts the Timbercrest subdivision in the very foreground of the photo. Friendship Village is yet to be built, since it opened in 1974. Thus we are looking at Parcel C and the Highlands in the background.

We then move into the photos that cover some aspects of Hoffman Estates government that were in place in 1969. This was Village Clerk Grace Kindelin’s office.

Fire Station #1 opened in 1960 and, sixty years later, exists as Station #21.

This was Fire Station #2 that was located at 469 Hassell Road. This station existed until 1974 when the village sold the building to the Schaumburg Township District Library. The library used the building as their Hoffman Estates Branch Library until 1992. It was later torn down and the current Branch Library was erected on the spot.

The Village Board’s chamber was the location for all board meetings.

The three photos above represent the Hoffman Estates Park District which was formed in 1964–five years after the formation of the village. None of the photos are identified in the booklet. The top two are clearly built around a pond or a lake–and are possibly the same park. The last photo is likely the Community Pool.

Other photos, such as the ones below, represent the various parades that took place in the young village.

If you recognize any of the parades or locations of the parks, please leave something in the Comments or send me an email. It would be great to put a name to the location.

Next week, schools and businesses will be featured. The businesses, in particular, were a wonderful surprise!

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library


February 3, 2019

During Hoffman Estates’ 60th anniversary year of 2019, we will take a look back at the Hoffman Estates you’ve known for the last six decades.  Every month there will be a posting on village happenings for each decade the village has been in existence. Maybe you remember some of the events and have something more to add to a few of the items? Send in your comments!

60 Years Ago In 1959

  • Another vote for incorporation was held on Saturday, February 21 from 6 A.M. to 6 P.M. at 117 Cumberland Street which is in Parcel B, just off of Roselle Road. The pro-incorporation group held a party at the Buggy Whip (Easy Street Pub) the night of the vote.  The proposal, however, was defeated by a vote of 276-142. Another vote was scheduled for September.
  • A Hoffman Estates unit of the League of Women Voters was formed as a branch of the Palatine chapter. Women who helped organize the unit were Cleis Jensen, Sally Probst and Louise Dennett.
  • A Valentine Square Dance was held at Our Saviour’s Methodist church on Saturday, February 14 starting at 8:30. Refreshments were served and donations of $1 per couple were requested to attend. The Dance committee was headed up by Gloria Bowen on Geronimo Street.

50 Years Ago In 1969

  • A new publication called “Community From Cornfields,” celebrating Hoffman’s 10th anniversary, was all the rage. Hank Linton, a commercial artist on Edgemont Lane, contributed a two-page drawing of local churches and designed the brochure’s layout.
  • The first four-bedroom ranch model houses in Hoffman Estates were offered in the new High Point subdivision by Hoffman Rosner.
  • Hoffman Estates Village Board rejected a zoning appeal for Photo-Mat to erect a 24-hour photo processing and developing booth in the Golf Rose Shopping Center. The booth was to be built with a styrofoam core surrounded by an aluminum skin and glass. It was rejected because of the potential for increased traffic and a lack of sanitary facilities. [Sidenote: Didn’t one of these eventually get built, next door in the Annex Shopping Center?]

40 Years Ago In 1979

  • Mobile classrooms at Hillcrest School in Hoffman Estates and Collins and Dirksen School in Schaumburg were scheduled to close at the end of the school year due to declining enrollment. Room was, once again, available in the school buildings.
  • Hoffman Estates offered a $1 million low-interest loan through village-sponsored bonds to Nederlander Organization of Detroit who was developing the Poplar Creek Music Theater which was being developed at an overall cost of $15 million.
  • After five years of planning, the Suburban Medical Center of Hoffman Estates was close to being built. The exterior walls were up and the interior was close to finished. Chuck Iobe, the administrator, was happy with the numerous windows, the circular nurses’ stations and the cheerful, orange, red and blue walls.

30 Years Ago In 1989

  • The Dominicks at 2575 W. Golf Road was all set for Valentine’s Day and was offering .79 Suave shampoo, Gallo table wines 3/$7.98, Kodak film for $2.69 and diamond earrings for $7.99. Not to mention cologne, lipstick and candy!
  • Village officials approved the construction of Woodfield Lexus in Hoffman Estates to be built at the corner of Higgins Road and Evanston Street. It was built next to Resnick’s Hyundai and was its first location in Schaumburg Township.
  • As part of Hoffman Estate’s 30th anniversary, the Daily Herald accepted questions regarding the history of the village. One of the questions was “When, where and why did Hoffman Estates first annex north of the tollway?” The answer that was provided by the village was: This annexation took place in 1961. There was a land developer who wanted some farm land annexed to the village of Hoffman Estates for the purpose of receiving village services for his development. The Northwest Tollway separated the potential development from the existing village of Hoffman Estates. The decision was finally made to annex by way of Barrington Road over the tollway to Central Road and then including the area that is now Winston Knolls.

20 Years Ago In 1999

  • The sale of Hoffman Estates Medical Center became final February 1 and it would be now known as St. Alexius Medical Center. They also closed on Woodland Hospital, a related-mental health facility that was nearby on Moon Lake Boulevard.
  • Hillcrest School was accepting applications for their new concept school that would group different grades together and design customized learning plans for each student. They had already received 294 applications for 300 openings.
  • The Village of Hoffman Estates issued a proclamation to an ailing Walter Payton offering him “their concern, care and ecumenical prayers” as a “Hoffman Estates business entrepreneur, professional football player and gentleman.” Mayor McLeod hailed him as a “great corporate neighbor” who contributed to numerous local programs such as the Children’s Advocacy Center for abused children.

10 Years Ago In 2009

  • Lakeview School in Hoffman Estates (as seen in the photo above) was celebrating its 50th birthday and was seeking former students, PTA members, community friends, families, teachers and staff who attended or worked at the school to attend the 50th celebration. Lakeview School opened in 1959–the same year the village was incorporated.
  • Susan Kenley-Rupnow, who served as member of the Hoffman Estates Village Board from 1985 to 2005 and then went on to serve as a board member for the District 211 board from 2007 until her death on February 14. She followed her father, John Harmon, who served as a village board member in the early 1960s and was instrumental in pushing for the Public Works building in 1986 and 1987.
  • The Tyson American Cup was held at the Sears Centre arena on February 21 and featured David Sender, Jordyn Wieber and Joseph Haggerty in the international gymnastics competition. Olympic greats like Mary Lou Retton, Kerri Strug and Paul Hamm were on hand to sign autographs.

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library

The factual items for this blog posting were taken from stories that appeared in the Daily Herald and the Chicago Tribune.


January 27, 2019


When I was at Woodfield Mall about two months ago, I stopped by the Guest Services Desk and asked the staff if they knew which restaurants and stores had been in the mall the longest.

The mall opened in September 1971 with Marshall Fields and Sears as the first two anchors. J C Penney opened in October and Lord & Taylor opened two years later in 1973. But, outside of the anchors, what were the oldest establishments? Were there any that have been continuously operating since the mall opened?

We batted it around a bit and surmised that the longest running restaurants were A&W, McDonald’s and Sbarro Pizza. Struggling to come up with the longest running stores, we could only think of Eddie Bauer as a possibility. Then, a light bulb went on and the staffer thought it might be some of the jewelry stores. With that, I had something to start with.

To research the question, I took a look at the list of stores on Woodfield’s website and compared it to the 1982 Schaumburg phone book, which is the oldest in our collection.

The only two restaurants listed on both the website and in the phone book were McDonald’s–and one we hadn’t considered–Baskin-Robbins. After checking the Daily Herald, it looks like both restaurants opened around 1977. Sbarro opened in 1984 and A&W opened either the same year or in 1985. So the restaurants are:

  • McDonald’s
  • Baskin-Robbins
  • Sbarro
  • A&W

The jewelry stores wound up being a good guess because both C.D. Peacock and Rogers & Hollands were on both the website and in the phone book–along with the following businesses:

  • C.D. Peacock
  • Rogers & Hollands
  • Fannie May
  • Foot Locker
  • The Gap
  • Hickory Farms
  • New York & Company (formerly Lerner Shops)

I then checked these against the 1971 Daily Herald to see if any of them were mentioned in articles, ads or classified ads. Lo and behold four of them were here in either September or October of 1971.

  • Hickory Farms (September 1971)
  • Lerner Shops/New York & Company (September 1971)
  • Fannie May (October 1971)

Think about it, Woodfield Mall is two years shy of celebrating its 50th birthday and, outside of the anchors, three stores have been in business for the entire duration. Imagine the number of customers who’ve gone through their doors, the number of times they’ve changed locations, renovated their stores and how many employees from Schaumburg Township worked for these retailers. What an amazing run they’ve had!

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library



January 20, 2019

In December 1959 the first Campanelli home was finished in the “W” section of Weathersfield and Ray and Carmella (Carm) McArthur moved in. They were the first in a long line of Weathersfield owners that extended into the late 1980s.

Ray was employed by Motorola, initially at their Franklin Park campus, and later in Schaumburg where the corporation established their headquarters. The couple didn’t let any grass grow under their feet and proceeded to get involved in the brand new village of Schaumburg.

Carmella worked at both the Ben Franklin store and W.T. Grant store in Hoffman Estates. Later, in 1965, the couple opened Carmen’s Colonial Restaurant in the brand new Weathersfield Commons at Springinsguth and Schaumburg Road. A Daily Herald ad for Carmen’s from June 4 of the same year mentions their specialty in Italian and American food for Dine In or Carry Out. The restaurant was in business until 1967. You can see portions of the menu below. It was quite extensive and reasonable–complete with a soda fountain, no less!

Ray served on Schaumburg’s Plan Commission for more than 12 years under Mayor Bob Atcher. In addition, Ray and Carm were also actively involved in St. Marcelline Catholic Church. Ray was head usher and a deacon, and Carm was one of the volunteers responsible for counting donations on Sundays and holidays.

Their son, Richard, moved with them to Schaumburg and built his own house in Weathersfield with his new wife, Mary Ann. They opened McArthur Realty in 1971 and had offices at 1635 W. Wise Road and 1407 W. Schaumburg Road. It was an active, busy realty company that served the greater Schaumburg Township area. To promote their company, they ran radio ads on some of Chicago’s major radio stations. Thanks to the McArthur family, you can listen to one of those ads here.

The radio spot advertised McArthur Realty’s involvement in the Weathersfield Lake Quad Row Homes in Schaumburg that were being developed by Campanelli.  It came complete with membership in the Nantucket Club which gave owners access to the clubhouse, gameroom and swimming pool.

The realty office closed after Richard passed away in 1976.

Before Richard’s death however, he and Mary Ann were also very involved in community affairs. Richard was one of the first Schaumburg Jaycees and Mary Ann was a Jayceette. They helped put together The Shindig which was a predecessor of Septemberfest. Richard also served on the Schaumburg Kings board.

Mary Ann was busy with the Camp Fire Girls, Nathan Hale Elementary School and St. Marcelline Church. She served on several committees of the Nathan Hale PTA and in 1975-1976 was President. She said, “To celebrate our country’s 200th birthday, our PTA had a carnival and it was amazing the number of people who attended, and more amazing was the number of volunteers we had including fathers of the students who helped build booths and supplied the hard labor.  The number of donations we received from business owners was overwhelming…from lumber and nails to build the booths, food, beverages, to prizes for the games!”

Another branch of the McArthur family was also instrumental in the development of Schaumburg. Ray’s step-brother, Wayne, and his wife, Carol, moved to Schaumburg with the intent of establishing a Methodist church. Campanelli became aware of this situation and donated a house on Springinsguth Road to serve as both a temporary church and house for the McArthurs.

When their house on Sharon was finished, the congregation then began meeting in the Jennings house and, later, in The Barn. Our Redeemer’s United Methodist Church formally opened its doors in 1970 on the northwest corner of Schaumburg and Springinsguth Roads. The church remains there nearly 50 years later.

The beginnings of Schaumburg and Hoffman Estates were busy times. The many young families who moved to the area immediately got involved establishing businesses, organizations and churches. Multi-generational families such as the McArthurs were definitely unusual in the early days. Schaumburg Township benefited all the more because of the passion of Ray and Carmella, the younger Richard and Mary Ann, as well as Wayne and Carol. In fact, to this day, members of the McArthur family still call Schaumburg Township home. They have all been instrumental in raising Schaumburg into the village it would become.

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library

I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to Mary Ann Russell and her son, Scott McArthur, for contributing photos and information about the early days of Schaumburg. They came to talk to me in 2014 with their photos in hand and, about a month ago, passed on the radio ad and the restaurant menu. They had mentioned these items in their earlier visit and, the fact that they remembered four years later, is amazing.

Justin Teschner, who is a grandson of Wayne and Carol, also stepped in and contributed wonderful details about their family’s contributions. The McArthur family hasn’t stopped giving and it is appreciated!

















January 13, 2019

It was a proud start for The Record on November 29, 1962 when Volume 1, Number 1 of the newspaper appeared on the doorsteps of all homes in Schaumburg Township .

Designed initially as a weekly, it was published every Thursday by Associates Publishing Co., Inc. of 186 Bradley Lane in Hoffman Estates–which was the home in Parcel B of editor, David R. Mann. Richard N. FitzGerald served as the Managing Editor and Rod Botts as the News Editor.

Other employees on The Record’s staff were Jack Fiddes, Jack Dempesey, Bill Oas, Joy Botts, Rod Botts, Les Gargan, John Medved, Darrel Mitelheuser, Bruce Drake and Sam Blandina.

Various articles in the first issue were written on the following topics:

  • The Hoffman Estates Jaycees taking first prize for their snowman float in the State Street Christmas parade.
  • Terry’s Finer Foods and Schmidt Iron Works purchased acreage in Schaumburg’s Industrial Park south of the tollway.
  • There was a possibility that F & S Construction would have to halt construction because Citizens Utilities Company did not have enough water to serve the area. Their next building project was slated for the area west of Jones Road and it was a completely different watershed. (Parcels A, B and C all empty into Salt Creek. The new area they were exploring emptied into Poplar Creek.)
  • District 54 Schools held nuclear disaster drills at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, November 27. “The drill was a complete success.”
  • The architectural firm of A.J. Del Bianco and Associates was employed by District 54 to build additional schools. They had previously designed Campanelli School.
  • A new township library would be in operation by the middle of December. They had rented a house on Roselle Road, just north of the Marathon service station. (It is shown below.)

Almost as interesting are the ads for various businesses that were willing to take a gamble on the new paper:

  • Hoffman Bowl
  • P&G Restaurant in Hoffman Lanes
  • Peckens TV on Irving Park Road in Roselle
  • Youngs Marathon Service at Roselle and Schaumburg Road
  • Buggy Whip (later the Easy Street Pub south of the intersection of Roselle and Schaumburg Road)
  • Sundance Ranch Western Wear on Golf Road at Roselle
  • Weathersfield Homes by Campanelli
  • Prospect Theatre in Mt. Prospect
  • Pabich Motor Sales–the new Rambler dealer–on Irving Park Road in Roselle
  • The Pizza Cottage on Irving Park Road in Roselle
  • Roselle Jewlers on Irving Park Road in Roselle
  • Hagenbrings Fabrics in Arlington Heights
  • Frank’s Hoffman Plaza Beauty Salon
  • F&S Construction’s 10 exciting 1963 model homes

According to Pat Barch, Hoffman Estates Historian, the newspaper eventually opened an office near the Thunderbird Theater in the Golf-Rose shopping center. In fact, the paper of November 15, 1972 states that they were in “temporary offices at Golf and Roselle Roads.” By that date the weekly paper had been purchased by Copley Newspapers and was now published on Wednesdays.

We do not know how long the newspaper lasted, but the library owns all issues of the newspaper on microfilm from the inaugural one on November 29, 1962 to April 4, 1973.

We are fortunate to have these because they came to us through Fred Downey who lived at 297 Pleasant Street in Hoffman Estates and served as mayor of Hoffman Estates from 1969 to 1973. His name and address are stamped on the front page of the issues.

It is my recollection that Roy Mansberger, who was head of Maintenance at our library in the 1970s and 80s must have known Mr. Downey because of his proximity to our Central Branch on Library Lane. He acquired the newspapers from Mr. Downey and passed them on to our Serials Librarian. She, in turn, sent them to the Illinois State Historical Library to have them microfilmed. In return, they gave us our own copies of the microfilm. This was a common practice that the Historical Library used for many years in order to acquire an extensive collection of local newspapers.

If you have any more details about this newspaper, the people who began it, where its offices were, and how long it was in business, please comment or send me an email.  I would certainly appreciate anything you can contribute.

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library


January 6, 2019

During Hoffman Estates’ 60th anniversary year of 2019, we will take a look back at the Hoffman Estates you’ve known for the last six decades.  Every month there will be a posting on village happenings for each decade the village has been in existence. Maybe you remember some of the events and have something more to add to a few of the items? Send in your comments!

60 Years Ago in 1959

  • When the first incorporation vote was held on January 17, 1959, around 2310 voters in about 1800 homes were registered. Voting was held at three schools: Twinbrook, Fairview and Hoffman. The proposal was defeated in a vote of 1062 to 843.
  • A plane owned by Ray Beaumont of Streamwood was forced to make an emergency landing on Charles Beranek’s Merry Hill Farm on the northeast corner of Golf and Plum Grove Roads. After technicians worked on it, the plane was eventually able to fly off of its own accord.
  • Work was progressing on the shopping center at the northeast corner of Higgins and Roselle (Hoffman Plaza.) F & S Construction began the development in September 1958 and was expected to complete it in the spring. The photo in the paper showed the bones of the Jewel store, including the arch of the entrance.

50 Years Ago in 1969

  • The Winston Knolls subdivision at Ela and Algonquin Roads opened for development on the second weekend of the month. The development was 350 acres and the intent was to build five different models, eventually building out at 770 homes.
  • Grant’s Department Store had a giant sale of household products, seamless nylons and lamp shades at their stores on January 9-11. The Hoffman Estates Grant’s store was at Golf & Roselle Road and was even open on Sunday “for your shopping convenience.”
  • The Hoffman Rosner Corporation donated land to District 54 for a new school to be built at 151 Kingsdale Road in the High Point subdivision. The new school was not built on this site but was eventually constructed at 1320 Kingsdale Road and was named Neil Armstrong Elementary School.

40 Years Ago in 1979

  • A developer proposed the construction of a second savings and loan in the village at the corner of Governor’s Lane and Higgins Road. At the time the only savings and loan in the village was Lincoln Federal Savings and Loan on Gannon Drive. The only bank was Suburban Bank on Roselle Road.
  • Otis Associates, who designed the Hoffman Estates Village Hall on Gannon Drive, won the bid to design the $800,000 recreational building on Algonquin Road that would become the Willow Recreation Center.
  • The Deli-Cafe in the Golf Rose Shopping Center closed on January 29. Mike Ernst bought the restaurant in 1977 and expanded it by including lunch and dinner menus. It was two doors north of Service Merchandise and was replaced by an Off The Rack clothing store.

30 Years Ago in 1989

  • The Police Department announced they would be purchasing six new Chevrolet Caprice squad cars to replace those in their fleet not worth maintaining.
  • Highland Super Stores on Roselle Road between Higgins and Golf announced an overstocked sale of TVs, stereos, washers, camcorders and other electronic items and appliances. Free “car deck installation” was offered with the purchase of a car stereo.
  • The village announced their slate of activities for the 30th anniversary party. Activities included a Great Ideas contest where participants would submit suggestions for improvements in the village, a trivia contest where the winner would receive either a $300 TV or VCR, a Fishing Derby at South Ridge Pond and a Mystery Dinner in the Grand Court at Woodfield Mall.

20 Years Ago in 1999

  • The Hoffman Estates Medical Center on Barrington Road held a blood drive on January 29 from 9-4. Each person who donated received a fanny pack and was entered into a drawing to win one of two $50 gift certificates to the Mill Rose Brewing Company in South Barrington.
  • Conant High School dedicated their gymnasium to William Perry who was principal of the school from 1977 to 1994.
  • The reopening of the golf dome at the Poplar Creek Country Club began to draw people in January after the Hoffman Estates Park District purchased it in the fall and revamped it to include simulated sand traps, water hazards and other amenities.

10 Years Ago in 2009

  • The village held its seventh annual Martin Luther King community breakfast on January 19. Vanessa Meeks and the Sears Holding Associate Gospel Choir performed at the breakfast.
  • Hoffman Estates High School received the okay to install artificial turf on their athletic playing fields for school year 2009-10. The work at the school was complicated because of the existing drainage system.
  • The Illinois Department of Natural Resources honored Plum Grove Printers of Stonington Avenue for its achievements in protecting the environment and boosting the economy. They instituted a 20-point program to reduce waste and increase sustainability through each step of their process.

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library

The factual items for this blog posting were taken from stories that appeared in the Daily Herald and the Chicago Tribune.


December 30, 2018

Our guest contributor this week is Pat Barch, the Hoffman Estates Historian.  This column originally appeared in the December 2018 issue of the Hoffman Estates Citizen, the village’s newsletter.  The column appears here, courtesy of the Village of Hoffman Estates.

The land that F & S Construction purchased east of Roselle, south of Golf and north of Higgins became what has always been known as “Parcel A”. F & S Construction promptly set up their lumber yard and milling operation on Plum Grove Rd., south of Higgins Rd. Houses started going up, with the first ones ready for occupancy in December of 1955. Families even moved in on Christmas Day.

That winter was a tough one for the newcomers. Their stories tell of broken water pipes, streets that were impassable due to mud and gravel roads that were not due for paving until spring. Mailboxes were nailed to posts and boards set up along Golf Rd. Each home had a tank in the back yard for propane that the homeowners called a pig.

Parcel A had large ½ acre lots. This was one of the reasons that people were moving out from the city. This first section of Hoffman Estates never had curbs or sidewalks. There were culverts on either side of the roads to drain off the water from heavy rainfall. To this day it has remained the same.

A number of residents suffered from flooding, possibly due to the relocation of a branch of Salt Creek that cut through Parcel A. The creek had been moved from the center of Parcel A to a location close to the north side of Higgins Road. The heavy rains may have been seeking its original route through the middle of the new development. [Addendum: You can see the creek, in blue, in the map above, as it moves between Hawthorn and Bluebonnet. This is from a 1961 U.S. Topographical map.]

The homes that were built in Parcel A didn’t offer a garage. The only protection for the cars was a carport that left the autos open to the rain and snow. But many missed the extra space for storage that a garage would offer them.The majority of new homeowners began closing in their carports, although in 2018 there are still homes that retain the carports from 1955-56.

Moving into a new home in December was really an exercise in patience and perseverance. The majority of new families had children. Those children were looking forward to Santa and wondering how he was going to find their new home. Those parents were also wondering how they would finish their holiday shopping and still have time to unpack the boxes and boxes of household items that still sat in hidden corners of the new house.

Hanukkah began on Dec. 10th that year and shopping for Christmas and Hanukkah gifts would be difficult. Elgin, Roselle or Palatine were the closest towns for shopping & groceries. Somehow the gifts were purchased, the holiday cooking traditions continued as always but in a new kitchen, in a new home and the start of a new life in Hoffman Estates.

Happy Holidays!

Pat Barch
Hoffman Estates Village Historian


December 23, 2018

This letter to the Daily Herald from Edward F. Kublank originally appeared in the July 7, 1955 paper and is reprinted here courtesy of the Daily Herald.

Mr. Kublank was born in Schaumburg Township in 1881 to William and Maria (Sunderlage) Kublank. (Pictured below) The family had eight children and lived on a farm that straddled both Plum Grove Road and the border of Palatine Township. That plays into the context of the letter that he wrote after the Palatine Centennial Book was published in 1955.

He is, most likely, writing mainly from memory. I clarified some parts of the letter, and any mentions will be in a separate paragraph immediately below.

We are fortunate that Mr. Kublank did what most never do and that is write his family’s history. The beautiful part is that he included wonderful anecdotes and interesting details that come only from those who have heard the stories over and over again.

(After the Centennial Book had gone to press, the editors received the following communication from Edward F. Kublank. Since it contained material of historical merit, the letter is being reprinted here.) 

I have recollections of Schaumburg township from my parents and grandparents and have that from as far back as 1828 or 1830. While it is that far back, I would not know exactly what year or years all this came to pass, if it was 1828 or 1830. But since 1834 I have it about correct.

I will start with those years, 1830 or 1828. Those were the years when the Pottawatomie tribe of Indians departed this Indian territory for Iowa and Nebraska west of the Fox river in Illinois.  Another tribe of Indians were the Black Hawks and farther northwest, the Algonquin tribe of Indians ruled. There may still be such a tribe as Algonquin in Oklahoma or New Mexico. But the Black Hawks and Pottawatomie tribes consolidated with other tribes.

To begin the part of the history of Palatine township and village, one must consider that in 1850 and later this was not laid out in township or as the Illinois state statute states that a township or town shall be the same meaning.

[Before it was officially organized and named Palatine Township in 1850, it was, in fact, probably surveyed in the late 1830’s. http://landplats.ilsos.net/ftpofillinois.htm The map below was drawn in June of 1840. The word “Palatine” was added at a later date.]

This Schaumburg township was laid out as a town in the later 1850’s. Its name was taken from Germany. The first settlers were those that flocked from New York and other North Eastern states. My grandfather John S. Sunderlage and his friend Gerhardt Greve, came from Northern Germany in 1826. For several years they worked on the Erie Canal (helped build it) in New York state, then from there they made their long journey on a small boat over the lakes to Chicago and worked on the Illinois-Michigan call from Chicago to the south of Joliet. This canal has not been in use since 1892.

[Schaumburg Township was also organized and officially named in 1850. Johann Gerhardt Greve was born in 1817 so Mr. Kublank is most likely referring to Gerhardt’s father, Johann Wilhelm. In addition, the Erie Canal was completed in 1825. The 1892 closing date for the Illinois & Michigan Canal is a bit early. The canal’s use was largely supplanted by the opening of the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal in 1900. It completely closed for operations with the completion of the Illinois Waterway in 1933.]

In 1830-32 my grandfather, John S. Sunderlage (a bachelor 30 years), arrived in Illinois and as he was a land surveyor in Germany, he was one of the men to survey the northern part of Illinois, shortly before that time Indian territory. You may know from other history of Illinois that in those years 1837-40, Chicago had a population of about 40,000 people.

[In 1840, according to the U.S. Census, the population of Chicago was 4,470. It accelerated to 29,963 in the 1850 census.]

The old Indian boundary line starts south of Norwood Park and runs to Naperville, DuPage county, and then west, North of that line was Indian territory until 1830-32. It was this territory that my grandfather helped to survey out into farms.  He worked here, but was as far west as Freeport. When the surveying was in progress, one Fourth of July all the men working at surveying wanted to have a celebration. They all came together at a point in what is now Hanover township by the 3 high peaks (mountains) located just south of Higgins concrete road about half way from the Schaumburg line to Dundee. There stood three very high peaks about 125 ft. high and were all stones, boulders, etc. No horses or cattle could get up on them and I doubt if any person was up to the top of them. That is where the July 4th celebration was going on. They had eats and drinks. Some of the men drank too much and lost some of the surveying papers and then had to measure the land all over again.

[It is a bit difficult to determine just where the three high peaks are that he was referring to. At first I considered that it was the area around Villa Olivia but, because he says the peaks were just south of Higgins Road, it has to be within sight of the road. Of course, considering that most of our area is around 750-830 feet above sea level, any landform in the area that is higher is going to seem mountainous. Judging by this topographical map from 1935, could it be this multi-pronged hill, where the number “5” is? It is west of the EJ&E tracks and fits the description he gave.]

After the surveying was completed, my grandfather, John Sweetheart Sunderlage, went back to Germany and stayed 2 years. He left here because there was no work and because he was not a U.S. citizen. He could not claim 160 acres of land to settle on at $1.25 per acre. But the Easterners from the north eastern states came here as fast as leaves drop off a tree in the fall of the year to file claims on land and after they had lived on it for a few months, sold out their claims to people from Europe and the Europeans had to live on it for three more years and pay $1.25 per acre for the land.

My grandfather came from Germany 2 years later. He was still a bachelor and brought three other families along from Germany. Some of their descendants now live in Palatine. Three of these parties, including my grandfather, each bought 240 acres of land all neighbors and all related somehow, in Schaumburg township, along what is now Higgins road. At that time roads were Indian trails. Those farms lay in the northwestern part of Schaumburg township. One of the farms is owned now by a grandchild of one the original owners more than 100 years ago. His name is Benjamin Meyer, Route 3, Palatine.

[It has frequently been stated, just as Mr. Kublank says, that his grandfather, Johann Sunderlage went back to Germany and returned to the United States a couple of years later with four other families who departed from Bremen, Germany. On Ancestry.com, it lists the manifest of the Ship New York that arrived in the Port of New York on June 19, 1838. The following Schaumburg Township families are mentioned–Ottmann, Meyer, Greve and Schirding–who are known to be associated with Mr. Sunderlage. In fact, he married Catharine Greve, who came with her parents, William and Margaretha. Catherine’s obituary also repeats the story. The curious thing is that Mr. Sunderlage is not listed on the June 19, 1838 manifest. Maybe he came earlier or later on another ship? It is difficult to confirm as his name is not listed in the Immigration and Travel section of Ancestry.]

One other descendants of one of the farm owners lives around there, William Greve, and another one, Emma Steinmeyer and Edward Sunderlage on Higgins road, Route 3, Palatine.

Schaumburg became a township in the 1850’s. Schaumburg produced the first republican lieutenant governor of Illinois. Mr. Hoffman, later called Hans Bush Bauer, went to Wisconsin and bought 700 acres land for an experimental farm near LaCrosse, Wisconsin. He lived here in Schaumburg township for several years, and preached in the Schaumburg church.

[Mr. Kublank is referring to Francis Hoffman, who served as the first pastor of St. Peter Lutheran Church from 1847 to 1851, and as Illinois Lieutenant Governor from 1861 to 1865.]

Schaumburg produced inventors. The Maytag makers of washing machines lived as tenants on a farm later owned by the Schuenemans. They also made automobiles. Schaumburg produced the first woman attorney-at-law of Illinois who lived on a farm east of where I resided. Her name was Bradwell. Later they owned a farm west of Palatine.

[Fred L. Maytag: A Biography documents Mr. Maytag’s birthplace as Cook County. If it was Schaumburg Township, there was a William Schueneman who owned property on the west border of Schaumburg Township at the southwest corner of Schaumburg and Barrington Roads. There was also Fred Schueneman who owned a farm on Central Road. It could have been either family, but was more likely William Schueneman because he was more prosperous and had more property.

The automobile reference is something new. It is possible, as Randy Schallau said in the comments below, that it was the Maytag-Mason Automobile Company out of Waterloo, Iowa that operated from 1910-1912 and was founded by Frederick L. Maytag.

The female attorney he is referring to is Myra Colby Bradwell. You can read about her family here.]

Schaumburg produced public school teachers.  One was my sister, Rosa M. Kublank, who taught for 30 years. Palatine produced inventors. The Bradley plow had its origin on a farm now owned by Ernest Plote. It was a wooden plow, but Furst nailed saw blades on it and was therefore part steel.

[Rosa is pictured in the photo above. She taught for a number of years at the Schaumburg Township District 52 one-room school that was on Plum Grove Road, two farms south of the Kublank farm. She died in 1955, the same year this letter was written.

This is a history of the developers of the Bradley plow that he mentioned. Because it was invented in the Chicago area, it is quite possible that it was invented or experimented with in Palatine Township.]

Alexander Hamilton was the inventor of the first wooden plow nearly 400 years ago and John Deere invented the first all steel plow. This Bradley plow was made later by Furst X. Bradley, Chicago factory. In 1908 it was sold out to Sears Roebuck & Co.

The man who built the first high brick building in Palatine was a farmer in Schaumburg township, Mr. Botterman. He has two sons. He built a brick building in Palatine for one son and built a brick store building in Arlington Heights, now owned by Gieseke store in Arlington Heights. The Horstman family all came from farms in Schaumburg township nearly 100 years ago.

[It seems Mr. Kublank was confusing Batterman and Botterman. The Batterman Brick Block building in Palatine was built in 1884 by Henry C. Batterman. It was three stories tall and was the pride of Palatine. When Henry died in 1902, he left the Brick Block to his grandsons, Dr. William Abelman and Dr. Henry Abelman. The building was demolished in 1938. It had already been gone 17 years by the time Mr. Kublank was discussing it.

According to the Illinois Digital Archive, the Gieseke store in Arlington Heights was originally built by William Batterman in 1891 who operated it as a general store.  He sold it to R. L. Precht who then sold it to Fred W. Gieseke in 1907. Gieseke operated it until his death in 1947 when his son-in-law took it over and ran it until 1965.

The Horstman’s lived in the northern part of the township, very close to the Kublank farm. Amanda Horstman married Louis Schoppe from Palatine who owned Schoppe’s General Store in the same town.]

The first white child born in Palatine or Schaumburg township was Mrs. M. Huenerberg who later resided on a farm on Roselle Road and was an aunt of Amanda Schoppe, now a resident of Palatine.

[Mrs. M. Huenerberg refers to Maria Catherine (Myer/Meyer) Huenerberg who was born in Schaumburg on July 16, 1838, shortly after her parents came to the United States on June 19, 1838 on the Ship New York that is mentioned above. They were Johann Dieterich and Catherine Maria Meyer.  What is amazing is that her mother was eight months pregnant when they arrived in New York. An account from the August 26, 1933 issue of the Daily Herald also states that she was “the first white child to be born in Schaumburg Township.” Mary eventually married John Huenerberg.]

Salt Creek, the drainage creek south of Palatine, received the name this way. In Plum Grove on the west side of the woodland, was a place where the farmers drove through the creek with loads of produce. There were no bridges here at that time. One farmer returned from Chicago with a barrel of salt on his wagon. As he drove through the ditch the barrel of salt rolled off the wagon box into the ditch in four feet of water, so he put up a sign by the ditch.  “Beware of the salt in the creek.” (The barrel). So the creek kept that name.

[We’ve heard this story many times but not in so much detail. The history behind the naming of Salt Creek is definitely part of local tradition.]

Plum Grove got its name because one time there were a lot of plum trees on the west side of the woodland. But for the last 75 years very few plum trees remained.

I was the first person who graduated from a law college many years ago. One brother, Herman J. Kublank, was the first printer born in Schaumburg township and worked at the business in Chicago for many years. My grandfather Kublank and one Mr. Babcock of Palatine township had the first four wheel wagon in the community.

[Herman J. Kublank, according to “Hillside Cemetery, Palatine, Illinois” by Constance Rawa of the Palatine Historical Society, was one of the owners of the Peninsula Publishing Company at 163 Randolph Street in Chicago. I suspect that the Babcock he is referring to is William Babcock who is also prominently mentioned in the Hillside Cemetery book.]

My grandfather, John S. Sunderlage bought the first mower and reaper in this community. It was a Mannies mower and reaper raked off the grain by hand. He did custom work for the other farmers. My grandfather built the best house in Schaumburg township, hauled all lumber, sand and brick from Chicago. The house stands there yet as solid as Stonewall Jackson stood in war times. Mr. Thurston of Palatine built the house in 1856. The house is a three story house. The walls are lined with bricks on the inside.

[The Manny Combined Mower and Reaper was invented in 1853 by John Manny in Rockford, IL.

Lastly, the house that Mr. Kublank refers to is, of course, the Sunderlage House in the photo above, that is located in Hoffman Estates. The house was built by Hiram Thurston of Palatine in 1856. The house is available for tours periodically throughout the year.]

Thank you to Mr. Kublank for providing us with details that illuminated our history!

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library

The photo of William and Maria Kublank is courtesy of Betty (Sunderlage) Getzelman. The photo of Rosa Kublank is courtesy of the Schaumburg Township Historical Society.



December 16, 2018

The box above is missing a picture of a snowman float that was created in Hoffman Estates in 1962. That year the State Street Council of Chicago decided to try something new with their famous Christmas parade. They opened it up to the suburbs, allowing local villages and cities to create a representative float to appear in the parade.

In fact, according to an article from the Hoffman Herald of November 1, 1962, “the Council wrote to the village requesting participation, and agree[d] to underwrite the cost of a float to the extent of $100.” Needless to say, even in 1962, this would not be enough to cover the expense so, once the Village gave approval, they also “agreed to further underwrite the cost of a float by an additional $150.”

They also requested that the Hoffman Estates Jaycees construct the float that would represent the village. So, with the help of an additional $150 from F & S Construction and $25 from Judge Muldowney, the Jaycees formed a special parade committee and got started.

Jim Boyer was named materials chairman and Carl Johnson was named construction chairman. They enlisted the assistance of fellow Jayceers Jerry Meyers, Fred Downing, Neal Galvin, Jim DeCardo, Dave Basch, Jim Lewis, Jim Sloan and Don Daly.

After throwing in the Jaycees’ donation of more than $425, they also contacted Al Hartman of the Roselle Lumber Company, who agreed to donate all of the lumber and exterior fibre glass. The Dickhaut Painting and Decorating Company of Elgin provided the painting and flocking, and “basic construction of the float was made by the lathing class, Washburn Trade School, Chicago.” [The Record, November 29, 1962]

Because a large enough site was required to create the float, H.C. Wilkening stepped in and donated a construction spot on his farm property. (You can see his farm in the upper right corner of the map above. It was located where the Dunbar Lakes subdivision is today, on the northwest corner of Schaumburg and Plum Grove Roads.) With all of the necessary materials, and manpower that consisted of more than 800 hours of volunteer help, the float came together in the shape of a 35-foot snowman.

The immense size of the structure required three more bits of special assistance: one, a hydraulic lift that was incorporated into the construction so that the snowman could be raised and lowered as it encountered the State Street “L” tracks and the bridges on the Congress Expressway; two, Don Sperling of Hoffman Estates provided the truck that was used to pull the float; and three, the village, state and Chicago police were required to act as escorts for the trip into the city.

And what a trip it was. The amount of time that it took to travel there and back, allowing for the bridges and the huge size of the float, was five hours. Five hours!

But, it was not in vain because, it won First Place in the suburban division! The cash prize was $1000 and the Jaycees and the village drove away (albeit, slowly) with a wonderful coup for the three-year-old village.

As Ed Pinger, village president, said at a huge victory celebration on November 25, “Today Hoffman Estates was put on the map. The entire village joins me in thanking all of the Jaycees for their tremendous effort.”

So, if you have a photo of this infamous snowman and would be happy to contribute it to the blog posting, I’d welcome the opportunity to add it. We’d all love to see what this masterpiece looked like!

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library

This blog posting was written with the assistance of The Record, November 29, 1962 and the Hoffman Herald, November 1 and 29, 1962.



December 9, 2018

There were a number of farmers in Schaumburg Township in the 1930s, 40s and 50s who used their rich farm land as truck farms. These farms would produce vegetables for corporations such as Campbell’s Soup or to take to local markets in Chicago such as the one on Randolph Street. The Rohlwing family, in particular, raised tomatoes for Campbell’s Soup and the Piske family at the northeast corner of Roselle and Nerge Roads raised a variety of vegetables, with their main crop being horseradish. 

The following account of another truck farm in Schaumburg Township was written by Elinor (Hortik) Mueller for the Spring 2011 issue of the Roselle History Museum Newsletter. It is an account of the farm her father, Joe Hortik, owned and is reprinted here with the Museum’s gracious permission. 

“Our farm of 40 acres, located on the southwest corner of Plum Grove and Nerge Roads in Schaumburg Township, since incorporated into [the] Village of Roselle, was strictly for raising vegetables. It was one of two truck farms in the immediate area. The other farms being dairy farms, growing mostly grain for their cattle.

A variety of vegetables were grown, such as cabbage, tomatoes, onions, squash, carrots, parsnips, sugar beets, asparagus, melons, pumpkins, corn, cucumbers, rhubarb and raspberries. There was also an apple and cherry orchard, and a huge bed of gladiola flowers.

Most of this produce was taken to the Randolph Street Market in Chicago where it was purchased by wholesalers and some retailers. Some vegetables were sold on the farm and to some local grocery stores.

On July 5, 1933 a tornado hit the area. All of the buildings, barns, sheds, home and crops were destroyed. Since it was too late in the season to replant, we had no income, so my dad was forced to work for the WPA until spring at which time he delivered seed for Vaughn’s Seed Co. [The photo below shows Elinor’s parents standing at the site of what was their house.]

Truck farming is hard work and long hours, driving to the market at 2 a.m. and then working until the next day’s load was ready for delivery. From planting in spring until harvesting in fall there was always plowing, planting, cultivating and harvesting to do. In the winter there were always machines to repair.

Farming is a gamble. Weather can affect all profit and loss for the year; too much rain, not enough rain, too hot or too cold. Farming is a labor of love, God’s gift to a few.”

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library