October 19, 2016

halloweenEven though it’s not a historical event in Schaumburg Township, Halloween is still an important day in our area.

For that reason, we’ve posted the Trick or Treat hours for the villages in Schaumburg Township for 2016.

Halloween, Monday, October 31:

  • Elk Grove Village         1 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Hanover Park               3 p.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Hoffman Estates          3 p.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Schaumburg                 2 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Stay safe and have fun!

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library



October 16, 2016

During Schaumburg’s 60th anniversary year of 2016, we will take a look back at the Schaumburg  you’ve known for the last six decades.  Every month there will be a posting on 3 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 1956

  • Carl Mees, the Farm Adviser for The Herald, wrote that he had spoken to Mrs. Gertrude McNaught of Rolling Acres Farm on West Schaumburg Road at the International Dairy Show being held at the International Amphitheatre.  Mrs. McNaught, one of the gentlewomen farmers of the area, was showing her prize guernsey cattle and hoping to win a blue ribbon or two.  (The McNaught farm can be seen below.) 4926-arnold
  • The Chicago Sanitary District was planning a referendum to annex a number of villages into the district–including Schaumburg.  The purpose was to use the District for future sanitary needs rather than counting on their own village resources.
  • An announcement of the wedding of Nancy Bullamore, daughter of Delbert Bullamore who managed Lake Cook Farm Supply, to Orville Lichthardt was made in the paper.  They were married at St. Peter Lutheran Church by Pastor F. A. Hertwig.

50 Years Ago in 1966

  • Mor-Well General Contractors presented a plan to the Schaumburg Plan Commission for a $2,200,000 three-part-cluster complex to be built on the west side of Roselle Road, just south of Schaumburg Road.  The first phase would consist of developing 91 single family homes on 30 acres that would be part of the Timbercrest subdivision.  Phase two would entail the building of a combination school and park area on 18.26 acres.  Lastly, the third phase would see a 4-building 156 unit apartment complex complete with a swimming pool and a tennis court.  The plan was met with considerable opposition from both Plan commissioners and local residents.
  • A Yorkshire pig that was won by the Otis Schmidt family at a luau escaped and was wondering the cornfields and roads of the township.  Permission was given by the family to Larry Dworzynski of Larry’s Standard Station that the pig was his if he could find it.  After feasting in local fields for a few months, the pig had put on twenty pounds and was dressed out at 60 pounds.
  • The Schaumburg Jaycees sponsored a village flag and seal contest with the endorsement of the village.  Open to all village residents, the hope was that they would receive a number of good designs to choose from.  The winning design would be turned over to a professional art firm that would spiff it up so that the Jaycees could then present it to the village for official approval.  (Schaumburg’s eventual seal and flag are shown below.)  schaumburg-flag

40 Years Ago in 1976

  • President Gerald Ford made an election stop at Woodfield Mall on October 26 while campaigning for the presidency.  A tour and a rally were scheduled for 7:30 p.m. with Ford expected to speak at 8:25.
  • The following restaurants in Schaumburg were looking for help in October:  William Flagg Restaurant at 795 E. Golf Road, Barnaby’s Restaurant at 134 W. Golf Road, Red Lobster at 680 N. Mall Drive, a new McDonalds in Woodfield Mall and the Brass Kettle Restaurant.  (Barnaby’s Restaurant is shown below.)  Barnabys 9
  • Arthur Treacher’s at 650 W. Golf Road was sponsoring their Tuesday Budget Banquet that featured “deliciously krunchy Fish & Chips plus creamy coleslaw and your choice of beverage.”  The regular price was $2.09 with the Tuesday special being $1.69.

30 Years Ago in 1986

  • Lion Photo on Golf Road was having a Halloween special at both their main store in Schaumburg and at their other 15 stores.  Their specials were the Maxxum 7000 camera for $339.95, the Minolta Freedom III camera for $179.95 and three-packs of Kodacolor VR film ranging from 5.95 to 7.95.
  • Spring Valley Nature Sanctuary was holding a Halloween Ghost Jaunt on a couple of evenings of the month.  A crowd must have been expected because advance registration was required for both residents and non-residents.
  • George Longmeyer, former village manager for Hoffman Estates and, more recently, assistant village manager for Schaumburg began his new position as Village Manager for Schaumburg in early October.

20 Years Ago in 1996

  • The village of Schaumburg announced that they would become a sister city to Namerikawa City, Japan in the upcoming months.  At the time Schaumburg was home to 15 Japanese companies.  Village officials were also attracted to the fact that a number of corporations made their headquarters in Namerikawa City.
  • The Schaumburg Township District Library announced it was ready to buy property in Town Square and begin construction on a new building that promised to be a focus of the redevelopment of the 26-year-old shopping center.
  • The Engineering and Public Works Committee approved an agreement with 34 subdivisions operated by homeowner’s associations to reimburse them for hiring contractors to plow their streets in the upcoming winter.  The village would continue to salt all of the streets.

10 Years Ago in 2006

  • The Woodfield Trolley Service, begun in 2000, was extended for an additional three years with plans to continue its route from the Convention Center, PACE Northwest Transportation Center, Woodfield Mall, Streets of Woodfield, Woodfield Village Green, IKEA and Roosevelt University.  (Woodfield Trolley is below.) woodfield-trolley
  • Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani and former Illinois Governor Jim Edgar appeared in Schaumburg at a fundraiser for Republican David McSweeney who was challenging Melissa Bean for the 8th Congressional District seat.
  • Village officials dedicated the theater at the Prairie Center for the Arts to Maggie Atcher, wife of former Mayor Robert Atcher.  Going forward, the venue would be called the Maggie Atcher Theatre.  Mrs. Atcher helped form the first cultural arts commission and was a major force in the creation of the Prairie Center.

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library

The Woodfield Trolley photo is graciously used from the Chicago Northwest blog.  


October 9, 2016

As mentioned in a blog posting from August 28, 2016, the Schaumburg Township Historical Society received a phone call from the Arnold family last fall.   They had a collection of photos of Schaumburg that Mrs. Arnold took in the early 1970s.  The pictures had sat in a drawer for the past forty years and they were hoping to pass them on to someone who might be interested.  The Historical Society gladly accepted the photos and then kindly donated them to the library to add to our Local History Collection.

The story of these photos begins in 1971 when the Arnold family moved to Schaumburg from southern California.  They were surprised at the amount of open space in Schaumburg Township still occupied by farm fields and undeveloped acreage.  Mrs. Arnold said, “We were amazed at all the open field but knew that wouldn’t last long.  I decided to take pictures of the ‘before’ of Schaumburg.”  She then began to drive the roads of Schaumburg, taking photos of various buildings and intersections.  This is some of what they saw…


Taken from Walnut Road, looking west towards Barrington Road. 

The McNaught-Odlum farm is in the distance with its big white dairy barn and silo.  The house is hidden in the trees.  The acreage of this farm was adjacent to Barrington Road to the west.

The property was part of the Gertrude and Norris McNaught farm that was called Rolling Acres.  It was purchased from William Schuneman in 1937 by Gertrude and her husband Norris, who co-founded Duro Metal Products in 1916.  Mr. McNaught died in 1942 and his widow later married his business partner, William Odlum.   It  became known as the Odlum property and was eventually sold for development in 1986.

According to Ruth (Volkening) Clapper whose family’s farm was to the east of the McNaught-Odlum Farm, the portion of the property that was on the corner of Barrington and Schaumburg Road  was leased “from the McNaughts during the war [by the Navy] and had a pilot training area with small shed type buildings on the property.  The sheds on the navy property were about 20 x 20 ft. and used for residences for the men working on the property… The buildings were quickly built with no inner walls so they were cold in the winter and hot in the summer. We used that Navy building for storage and, in the summer, part was my playhouse for my dolls and all their furniture including a child size kitchen.”

You can read about the Navy’s use of the property for pilot touch and go training here.


McNaught-Odlum farm from Schaumburg Road.

This photo looks south from Schaumburg Road at the McNaught-Odlum farm that was adjacent to Barrington Road.  It is a better vantage point of the farm and it is possible to note that the lane off of Schaumburg Road separated the barn from the house.  In fact, there seems to be quite a distance between the two.

Mrs. Clapper said “the barn had a residence over the right extension of the barn. Two families lived on the farm – one in the house and one above that portion of the barn.”

It is also interesting how many trees and evergreens surround the house, providing shade and a wind break.  What appears to be missing–or obstructed from view–are the many outbuildings that can be found on a farm, i.e. the machine shed, a chicken house, equipment shed, etc.  Maybe they are tucked in amongst the trees or over the rise of the hill?


Looking southwest from the intersection of Schaumburg and Walnut Lane.

 The brown building on the corner is Christ the King Lutheran Church (then Our Shepherd Lutheran Church, now Salem Korean United Methodist Church) which was built around 1971.  According to Mrs. Clapper, the church was initially intended to be an outreach center for St. Peter Lutheran Church.  In the middle background are some of the buildings of the farm belonging to Mrs. Clapper’s parents, Herman and Edna (Greve) Volkening.  You can see the large barn with the silos to the right.  The white building to the left is the corn crib.

The Volkenings sold the corner to the church and according to Mrs. Clapper, “the parsonage is my family home since my parents had it moved there so it would not be demolished. They were one of the last to sell their land.  The church was built without a parsonage and Pastor Borhardt (sic) rented a house in Weathersfield until my parents sold their farm and moved the house.”

In the far background are the Hanover Highlands homes.


Schaumburg Road and Pleasant Drive looking northeast.

As we look northeast, we can see the back of the strip mall that was on the NW corner of the intersection of Schaumburg and Roselle Roads.  This strip mall–that was never named–was built  around 1966 and remained on the corner until 2010 when the village bought the property for development purposes.  The property is now the home of Pleasant Square–a residential development that includes row houses, townhouses and single family homes.


Town Square sign at the intersection with Schaumburg Road.

The Town Square sign on Schaumburg Road at Pleasant Lane notes the turnoff for the shopping center that opened in 1970.  The homes of Timbercrest are in the background.


Looking across Schaumburg Road near Branchwood Drive at the property that became Friendship Village.

In July 1972 the Village of Schaumburg and Rush Presbyterian St. Luke’s Medical Center North announced that they were beginning negotiations to bring a hospital to Schaumburg.  Their potential site was the home of today’s Friendship Village and, at that time, was owned by A. Harold Anderson of J. Emil Anderson & Son, a large Chicago area development company.  The sign notes their potential development of the space.  The project was disbanded in 1975 when the costs became too high to bring a hospital to Schaumburg.

Looking northeast across Schaumburg Road at Hilltop Drive.

The cars across the street are parked at Blackhawk School which opened in 1958.  To the right is the property that would later be used for the Schaumburg Post Office.


Looking west down Schaumburg Road at Hilltop Drive.

One of the Hoffman Estates Parcels is to the right off of two-lane Schaumburg Road.  Note the tall oak trees on the right side of the road.  They are remnants of the original Sarah’s Grove.   The distinctive Episcopal church sign, also on the right, is there to point out the Church of the Holy Innocents that was on Illinois Boulevard for many years.

Looking across Barrington Road at the Schaumburg Road intersection.

Notice that Schaumburg Road ended at Barrington Road at that time.  Even so, Barrington Road was a four lane road with a stop light.


Schaumburg Road near Walnut

The open spaces, undeterred by development in these photos, were abundant and definitely carried a rural feel.  Schaumburg Township in 1973 still had an awful lot of growing up to do!

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library

My thanks to Ruth Volkening Clapper for providing the necessary details that allowed me to complete this blog posting.  Her personal memories and knowledge of the area were a wonderful addition to the photos taken by Mrs. Arnold.  


October 2, 2016

Our guest contributor this week is Pat Barch, the Hoffman Estates Historian.  This column originally appeared in the September 2016 issue of the Hoffman Estates Citizen, the village’s newsletter.  The column appears here, courtesy of the Village of Hoffman Estates.

Ponds and lakes seem to be in every neighborhood in Hoffman Estates.  The very oldest areas of town in Parcel A & B are about the only areas that don’t have some kind of retention pond to gather runoff when we have heavy rains.  F & S Construction didn’t begin grading the other parts of town to prevent flooding until they developed the area around Lakeview School in Parcel C & D.  (You can see some of the lakes and ponds in this early map of Hoffman Estates from the Schaumburg Township District Library’s map file.)


The retention ponds became places for fishing in the summer, enjoying the ducks and geese and ice skating in the winter.  Eventually ice skating was limited to just a few ponds.  With warmer winters and safety issues it was best not to offer ice skating anymore.

I wondered how many of the ponds were actual lakes that the developer found when he began to build the homes in Hoffman Estates.  Looking at a National Geographic Survey map from 1953, I found the areas that did have ponds put in by F & S and other builders,  were already wetlands that were natural choices for retention ponds and flood control.    The only lakes I could find on the NGS maps were up north off Algonquin Rd:  Whispering Lake Park off of Huntington Blvd., South Ridge Lake Park off of Fremont Rd. and Westbury Lake Park off of Dresden & Westbury Dr..

When you look at the map of Hoffman Estates and surrounding towns, you find these marked as lakes.  All the other ponds shown on the Hoffman Estates portion of the map do not have names.  They are the ponds that the developers planned into the area they were building to provide control of excess rain water and provide proper drainage for the neighborhood.

It’s wonderful to have these ponds and lakes in our town.  The parks that are part of the lakes and ponds are great places to visit on warm summer days.  Some have playgrounds, others have walking paths but all are an asset to our village.

In researching the newspapers for stories about the parks, I found a very funny story about the ducks and geese that frequent our park ponds and lakes.  50 years ago, in the Nov. 24th, 1966 edition of the Daily Herald, it seems that eighteen white ducks “of the domestic variety” were to be evicted from Lakeview pond next to Lakeview School.  Lyle Button, Hoffman Estates Park Commissioner, was going to transport the ducks to Brookfield Zoo where they would be “happier”.  He revealed to board members that “he had his course of action planned”.  As parks Improvement committee chairman, he would buy several long handled chicken catchers.  Four boys would assist him with the project.  Did it really happen?  I would have loved to be standing on the shore watching “the project” completed by those four boys.  Was Mr. Button in the boat with them?  I’ve not found another story that answers these questions.


We know that a special variety of swans guard the ponds and lakes warding off unwanted ducks and geese.  Mr. Button would’ve liked that I’m sure.

Pat Barch
Hoffman Estates Village Historian

Summer photo above, of the pond near Lakeview School, was graciously submitted by C. Blotteaux. 



October 2, 2016

On Sunday, October 16, 2016 the Hoffman Estates Historical Sites Commission will conduct guided group tours of the Greve Cemetery on Abbey Wood Drive in Hoffman Estates.

Groups will be shown the interrelated Greve, Meyer, Ottman and Sunderlage pioneer families buried at the cemetery which is also known as Wildcat Grove Cemetery or Evangelical and Reformed Cemetery.

The event is free.  Tours will start at 1:00, weather permitting.  Call 847-781-2606  for reservations after Monday, October 10, 2016.

Tours are also available for small groups by appointment at other times.


October 1, 2016

What:  The Volkening Heritage Farm at Spring Valley Nature Sanctuary is sponsoring their annual Autumn Heritage Festival.  Step back in time and watch history come to life at Spring Valley’s most popular event! Experience life on an 1880s farm by helping with the harvest, cooking over the woodstove or squeezing fresh apple cider. Relive the adventure of the Illinois frontier at an authentic pioneer encampment near the log cabin. The day will include historical demonstrations, children’s crafts, haywagon shuttle, live music and a variety of tasty fall foods.

When:  Sunday, October 2, 2016 Noon to 5 p.m.

Where:  Volkening Heritage Farm.  Parking is available at the Nature Center on Schaumburg Road and off Plum Grove Road across from Heritage Farm.
Charge:  Cost is $4 per person and $16 per family. Children 3 and under are free.

Info:  Call (847) 985-2100 for more information.


October 1, 2016

The Schaumburg Township Historical Society will sponsor an open house of the Schaumburg Centre School on Sunday, October 9, 2016.  The open house will be held from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.  The schoolhouse is located on the St. Peter Lutheran Church property.

Constructed in 1872–and first called Sarah’s Grove School, it is believed to have been the first of five public schools in Schaumburg Township. It was later renamed Schween’s Grove School and called Schaumburg Centre Public School until 1954. For 82 years, the building served as a one-room schoolhouse, and was the last active one room schoolhouse in District 54.

With the widening of Schaumburg Road, the building was saved from demolition and temporarily placed on the grounds of the Town Square Shopping Center in 1979. It was permanently relocated to the St. Peter Lutheran Church property in September, 1981. It has been fully restored as a museum and is under the auspices of the Schaumburg Township Historical Society.

You can check out the Historical Society’s website here.


September 25, 2016

While in Minneapolis recently, we turned the corner and this building sprang into view–and it looked very familiar.


In doing a bit of research, I discovered that it was designed by Minoru Yamasaki for Northwestern National Life.  It opened in 1965 and was later known as the ReliaStar Building, followed by the ING 20 Washington and is now the Voya Financial 20 Washington building.  Mr. Yamasaki is well known for also designing the World Trade Center.

But, what struck me most is that it immediately reminded me of this building with its tall white arching colonnades on each side…


This building is today BMO Harris Bank at 1400 N. Gannon Drive in Hoffman Estates and is across from Hoffman Estates High School along Higgins Road.  It was originally built for Lincoln Federal Savings & Loan and designed by Godfrey L. Duke, a Wheeling architect.

Lincoln Federal was based in Berwyn in 1973 when they announced that they would be building a new branch on five acres of land, just north of the Hoffman Estates Village Hall.  It was originally a two building design, with the bank connecting to a six story commercial building via a one-story cultural mall.  Because the area was not zoned for such high buildings, it was necessary to pursue a variance.  However, for whatever reason, the six story structure nor the cultural mall was ever completed.



The bank, though, opened in June 1975 and is postmodern in style like the Northwestern National Life building.   It came complete with “a pre-cast concrete colonnade of white quartz aggregate supporting a wide roof overhang.”  [The Herald, May 23, 1974, Section 3]  There were also eight drive in lanes covered by illuminated glass dome canopies, community meeting rooms and beautiful round fountains gracing the exterior at the Higgins/Gannon corner of the building.  A berm was also created on the west side of the property to provide some separation with the adjacent housing.

In a nod to the ongoing struggle by Hoffman Estates officials to convince the U.S. Postal Service of the need for a post office, an automated, 24-hour self-service postal facility was opened in the building.  Vending machines for stamps, post cards, stamped envelopes, etc. were available as well as a coin change machine and scales for weighing packages.  (The village had another facility of this sort at 1001 N. Roselle Road in Hoffman Plaza.)  [The Herald, June 27, 1975, Section 1]

A few years later in 1980, Lincoln Federal changed from a federally chartered bank to a state chartered bank and took on the name of Land of Lincoln Savings and Loan Association.  They subsequently merged with Household Bank in 1989.  Household then merged with Harris Bank in the late 1990s.  The bank is currently part of the BMO Harris Bank operation.

The neat thing is that when District 211 redesigned the facades of their high schools a few years back, they took their cue for Hoffman Estates High School from the iconic structure across the street and created this:



Take a drive down Higgins and recognize the similarities.  It’s nice to honor the architects who designed these spaces–whether they’re in Minneapolis or Hoffman Estates!

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library

Thank you to Ginny Roncoli, Branch Manager of BMO Harris Bank, for assisting me in some of the details for this blog posting.  It is much appreciated.



September 18, 2016

During Schaumburg’s 60th anniversary year of 2016, we will take a look back at the Schaumburg  you’ve known for the last six decades.  Every month there will be a posting on 3 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 1956

  • In its first year, the village operated for a time without any type of tax revenue.  They depended on tavern licenses and building permits to fill their coffers.
  • Four families held a large white elephant sale at the home of one of the families–the Breyers.  Their farm was on the south side of the road, 1 1/2 miles west of Roselle Road, across from today’s Schaumburg High School.  Other families involved were the Meginnises, the Schuberts and the Mathews.  Items for sale were:  horse sleigh, feather comforters, cedar fence post, size 42 short tuxedo, and an apartment size electric washer to name a few.
  • Pure Oil secured options on property in Schaumburg Township, south of the proposed North Illinois toll road as a future office site.  The building was expected to be completed in 1959 and would have air conditioning, a modern lounge and cafeteria area, as well as plentiful parking.  (A photo of Pure Oil is shown below.)Pure Oil 1

50 Years Ago in 1966

  • According to Bell Savings and Loan Association who tracked building permits, Schaumburg led all northwest suburbs in home building in August with a total of 87 permits being issued.  The dollar value of those permits was $1,795,816.
  • At a recent Schaumburg Village Board meeting, recognition was given to Richard Napier who raised and lowered the American flag each day at the corner of Schaumburg and Roselle Road.  Someone was also being sought to repaint the 50-foot flag pole.  The pole was on the northwest corner of the intersection, near the Marathon Station and is the large pole in the picture down below.  (This photo was donated by Richard Napier and he pointed out the flagpole at that time.)Library
  • Trustees approved a tree-replacement program at a cost of $1850.  After losing many Dutch elm trees due to the fungus that attacked the trees nationwide, it was decided to contract with Klehm Nurseries to supply up to 74 new hardwood trees.

40 Years Ago in 1976

  • It was announced on the last day of the month that the starting time for the Secretary of State driver testing station was being postponed due to a delay in the furniture.  This long-awaited facility was scheduled to open in the Woodfield Commons Shopping Center–where it still is today.  It was chosen for its central location and its proximity to various roadways.
  • After multiple accidents at Springinsguth Road and Weathersfield Way, the Cook County Highway Department reversed its decision and agreed to install stop signs at the busy intersection.
  • With the gubernatorial election approaching, both candidates took part in Septemberfest festivities.  Governor Dan Walker walked with Village President Ray Kessell at the front of the parade while Republican candidate, James R. Thompson, rode with Kessell to Robert O. Atcher Park where the festival took place.

30 Years Ago in 1986

  • It was announced that Minneapolis-based chain restaurant Leann Chin’s would be opening a venue in Woodfield Mall in the upcoming months.  Carryout operations only were scheduled to open in Chicago and Oak Brook but Woodfield would have the first sit-down restaurant.Zurich Towers
  • The twin Plaza Towers were scheduled to open in October.  The buildings are 20 stories and were designed by Otis Development.  W.E. O’Neil was the general construction contractor.  (The complex currently serves as the headquarters of insurance company Zurich North America, and is known as Zurich Towers–until their move to their new headquarters at Meacham and Algonquin Road in September 2016.)
  • Dr. Paul Meginnis, a veterinarian at Arlington Racetrack and 32-year Schaumburg resident died on September 7, 1986.  His family purchased the farm at the jog in the road at Plum Grove and Schaumburg Road in 1954 and lived there until 1979.  He served on the village’s first Planning Commission and on the board of District 54.  His wife, Sara, was elected as the first Village Clerk.  (Read more about them and their farm here.  The photo below shows their barn and the jog in the road.)2863

20 Years Ago in 1996

  • PACE’s Northwest Transportation Center near One Schaumburg Place found its parking lot filled to overflowing for the first time on Sunday, September 15.  The Super Bear Shuttle had proved to be a convenient way for fans to get to Soldier Field without the hassle of driving and parking near the stadium.
  • The Public Safety Committee made the recommendation that the village’s police headquarters on Schaumburg Road be renamed the Martin J. Conroy Center in honor of Schaumburg’s first police chief who died earlier in the summer.
  • The Woodfield Athletic Club at 1416 N. Payne Road was home to one of the area’s longest-running Mixed Doubles Tennis Leagues.  In September 2016 this facility is Schaumburg Tennis Plus, owned by the Schaumburg Park District.

10 Years Ago in 2006

  • Services were held for Elmer Rohlwing, grandson of John Rohlwing, who Rohlwing Road is named for.  Elmer was born on the Rohlwing farm that was on the east side of Route 53, across from Woodfield Mall.  Their family’s large, white barn (shown to the right) remained on the property for many years and served as a maintenance location for the Cook County Forest Preserve District.Rohlwing barn
  • Macy’s opened their store at Woodfield on Saturday, September 6, after their parent, Federated Department Stores, chose to abandon the Marshall Field name in order to create a coast-to-coast name for the stores.
  • Ted’s Montana Grill opened at 930 Meacham Road.  It was their second restaurant in the area and is where White Chocolate is today.

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.


September 11, 2016

lenglsFor years Frank Lengl owned and operated Lengl’s Schaumburg Inn on Roselle Road.  This is the building that is now known as the Easy Street Pub.  Lengl purchased the business and surrounding property in the late 1910’s and owned it until his death in 1965.

Born in Germany, Mr. Lengl immigrated to the United States in 1914 according to the 1930 census.  He never forgot his homeland and it was evident in the menu and the atmosphere of Lengl’s Schaumburg Inn.

In a 1959 issue of the now defunct, The Higgins Herald, an article was written about a trip Mr. Lengl, who was in his 70’s at the time, took to Germany to visit his birthplace and his relatives.  It is reprinted here in its entirety as it was written and is an interesting perspective of post World War II Germany and Europe.  For instance, rather than renting a vehicle while he was there, he bought one instead and resold it when he left!  Enjoy his take on the parts of Europe he visited.


Frank Lengl of Quindell rd. in Schaumburg Center recently returned from a trip with his niece, Hanna Heinle, to Europe.

They left Schaumburg March 12 for New York where they sailed on the S.S. America for Bremerhaven, Germany.  In route they stopped ove[r] in Ireland, Le Havre, South Hampton, and finally in Bremerhaven.

The two took a train to Augsburg where Mr. Lengl bought an Opel automobile.  This transaction took one day.  They arrived in Augsburg on Monday and owned an Opel on Tuesday, with license plates and full insurance.Opel

Mr. Lengl was born near this Bavarian city 73 years ago.  He lived and grew up there to become a butcher.  He continued this trade as a sausage maker when he came to America in 1912.  In 1922 he move to Schaumburg Center and has lived in his large brick house on Quindell rd. since then.

Lots has happened to his home town since he left it many years ago, Mr. Lengl said.  “It looks just like it does around here,” he said.  “There is a lot of new industry, a new depot, a new subdivision like Hoffman Estates, and even a 30-story building.”

He calls the change the “difference between night and day.”  The big industry going on is the textile industry.  Other industry in the city that is new since he left is a Messerchmidt airplane factory and the Maschineenfabrik Augsburg-Nurnberg factory which built the engine that powers the Hanseatic, the ship which brought them home again.  This factory makes the Deisel engines, and was started by the man who invented the Deisel engine that bears his name.

Mr. Lengl was especially pleased with the new highways.  He said that he considered the Autobahn as fine as our turnpikes.  As he drove all over Europe he was glad to have such fine roads.

They also travelled in Austria, Switzerland, and France in their car.

He said that there were many soldiers stationed in Augsburg but that they were nice to the people and brought in a lot of money with them, so were well accepted.  Apparently, he said, the military police are quite strict.

The Lengl home is still standing but quite different from the building that Mr. Lengl knew as a young man.

The war hit all of the neighborhood but it is still built up again now and town is in fine shape.  He said that many of the people were prosperous and unemployment is nil.  Property is very expensive for this reason.  Everyone has money and some hold land as well.  The land is valuable with the post-war growth and the land owners can ask a very high price.

Mr. Lengl commented on the large number of displaced persons in Germany.  He said the persons from Checoslovakia [sic] who owned a business in their home land valued at 200,000 marks would be set up in business by the German government at the same cost.

Both Mr. Lengl and his niece were amazed to see snow on the ground in the Bavarian mountains on May 1.  The valley was all green and warm and the mountains [sic] top were white with snow above 1200 meters.

Prices compared quite favorably with Americans [sic] prices.  A dinner, for example, that would cost $3.00 here would run $1.00 there.  A good men’s shirt there would be about $3.00, and a pair of Italian impored [sic] woman’s shoes was only $15.00.  His niece bought a Dendel for about $15 and a camera priced at $300 here for $150.

They visited with relatives on the trip who are still in Augsburg.

After completing their round trip tour of Europe they came back to Augsburg and resold the Opel.  Then they took a train to Hamburg and sailed for home on the “Hanseatic.”


Other articles on the Easy Street Pub may be found here and here.

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library

Gratefully reprinted from The Higgins Herald.  Higgins Publishing Corp., Hoffman Estates.  P.O. Box 295, Roselle, Illinois.  July 16, 1959.  Vol. 1, No. 24.

The Opel photo is gratefully used from Wikipedia’s page on the Opel Olympia Rekord P1.