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

  • Illinois Bell Telephone announced that in June their first ever mobile unit would be deployed to Schaumburg to handle 800 phone numbers in the rapidly growing area.  It would be housed in a steel trailer and have the same type of dial equipment housed in central offices.  Plans were for it to be in place for one year with all emergency calls being handled by the Arlington Heights central office.  A permanent station would be built during that time.  (Does anyone know where that was/is?)Illinois Bell
  • St. Peter Lutheran Church held Family Night on April 20.  Part of the festivities included a movie of their recent bell-raising.  Their old bell was cracked in a fire nearly 50 years before and was lowered in December 1955 and replaced with a bell given to the church by St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church in Park Ridge.  The old bell would be mounted as a memorial on the lawn.  
  • Walter Slingerland Jr. ran an ad in the April 12 issue of the Herald urging voters to cast their ballot for him for School Board member in the upcoming April 14 election.  [Slingerland and his wife, Helen, built the house that now serves as the village’s Division of Public Health and Nursing on Schaumburg Road in front of the Municipal Center.]Bell

50 Years Ago in 1966

  • Vinton Bacon, Superintendent of the Metropolitan Sanitary District, made a recommendation that the district purchase property on Meacham Road near Schaumburg Road as a future sewage treatment plant.  He also encouraged the board to begin calling the plants “water reclamation plants.”  [Obviously his wishes were followed as the plant’s current name is the Egan Water Reclamation Plant.]
  • The following Schaumburg businesses placed an ad congratulating the Schaumburg Herald on their beginning:  The Buggy Whip, Carmen’s Colonial Restaurant, Hill ‘N Dale, Larry’s Standard Service, Schaumburg School of Music, Schaumburg Transportation Company, Mike’s Barber Shop, Schaumburg State Bank, Jewel Foods, Timbercrest by Mor-Well Builders, Weathersfield Pharmacy, Weathersfield Pure Oil Service and State Farm Insurance.
  • An article in the April 14 issue of the Schaumburg Herald mentioned that the Weathersfield subdivision was named by Campanelli, the builder, after an exclusive village in England.  Campanelli called for all of its developments to be named “Wethersfield” but in Schaumburg “someone ‘corrected’ the legal papers for the Schaumburg development by adding the unwanted ‘a.”  This was according to Campanelli spokesman Joseph Sharkey.  Hill ‘N Dale and Timbercrest both got their names from the rolling, wooded terrain.  The Drumcastle subdivision was given it’s name because “it had a sturdy, masculine sound which implied permanency and security.”

40 Years Ago in 1976

  • An article on the “wealthy booming northern suburbs” in the April 12 Chicago Tribune quoted Richard Batchen of J. Emil Anderson & Son, a local developer, saying “There’s in excess of 3 million square feet of office space in Schaumburg and an estimated 82,000 office caliber people living within a 5-mile radius of the village.”  Batchen also said that without Woodfield Mall there probably wouldn’t have been the office development.
  • At their village board meeting Schaumburg officials gave the Schaumburg Jaycees permission to hold a car wash at Town Square and their annual carnival to be held at Town Square on June 17-20.  [Does anyone remember this carnival and what it entailed?]
  • The Schaumburg Park District sponsored a Park Name Contest to encourage residents to give them ideas for the following parks:  Hoover School park, Aldrin School park, Cedarcrest Sienna park, Albert Einstein park, 40-acre lake site near Walnut Lane, lake park site west of Salem Drive near the new Schaumburg Road police and safety building, the future Salk School park site, the Nerge School park site and the Collins School park site.  [The Park District was as busy naming parks as the School District was naming schools!]

Trickster gallery30 Years Ago in 1986

  • Women’s Workout World opened in the former Lake Cook Farm Supply building on Roselle Road adjacent to the Town Square Shopping Center.  [It would later become a branch of the Chicago Athenaeum and then the Trickster Gallery.]
  • A program featuring author John R. Powers who wrote Do Black Patent Leather Shoes Really Reflect Up?, was rescheduled from the Schaumburg Township Public Library to Schaumburg High School due to the potential crowds that the author attracted.
  • T.J. Cinnamons opened its first Chicago area store in Woodfield Mall.  The store had an open kitchen concept where customers could see staff roll the dough out onto a large baking sheet with about 60 pats of butter.  The dough was sprinkled with cinnamon, rolled into the size of a baseball bat and then cut into 4-inch rolls and baked.  The price for each roll was $1.50.  What a deal!

20 Years Ago in 1996

  • Redbook Magazine named Schaumburg High School one of America’s top schools.  The list included 144 schools across the country and were recognized for classroom innovation, parent/community involvement, extracurricular activities, special-needs programs, significant improvement and overall excellence.
  • The Olde Schaumburg Centre Commission approved the plans of Bolger Development of Elk Grove Village for the four buildings they proposed in the new Town Square Shopping Center going up at the intersection of Schaumburg and Roselle Roads.  Commission members asked Bolger to alter their plans slightly so as to match them more favorably with the buildings in Schoolhouse Square across the street.
  • The new Byerly’s grocery store announced they would open in May.  Byerly’s was part of an upscale supermarket chain out of Minnesota and it was to be located at the corner of Meacham and Higgins Road.  Their intent was to compete with Sunset Foods, Treasure Island, Fresh Fields and Whole Foods.


10 Years Ago in 2006

  • Harper College celebrated Indian-Pakistani Student Culture Night with dance performances, a wedding fashion show and food featuring samosas, kebab rolls, mango juice and Indian rice, provided by Gaylord Fine Indian Cuisine restaurant in Schaumburg
  • The new Hanover Park branch of the Schaumburg Township District Library opened its brand new building on Irving Park Road.  It opened just in time for the April 30 expiration of its lease in the outlot strip mall of the Tradewinds Shopping Center.HP Branch
  • A Chicago Tribune story on the huge boulder that stands about four feet tall and four feet wide at the District 54 Nature Center at Frost Junior High pondered the question of how the boulder got there.  “Bulldozers may have pushed it over to this property when they were building houses on the west side,” said Robert Todd, a nature center employee better known as “Prairie Bob.”

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.


  1. larryrowan Says:

    I wonder if the Mobile Dial Exchange was located where Illinois Bell built the permanent telephone exchange on Jones road near Higgins?

  2. Fred Luft Says:

    Jane, thanks for this interesting info. Some things I forgot about and others I did not know about.

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