The Walter and Maybelle Ellis family moved to Schaumburg Township in 1955, just before the boom started.  They, along with their daughters Jean (Mathew Helsper) and Betty (Melvin Helsper) bought property on the southwest corner of Schaumburg and Plum Grove Road from Palmer and Marge Carlson.  The daughters had married two Helsper brothers and the families moved to the corner with the intent of living close together.   Prior to building their homes, it was necessary to get approval from Cook County to have it dubbed the Helsper-Ellis Subdivision.  Once the homes were built, the families quickly became involved with the new village of Schaumburg.

These photos are from the collection of Mathew Helsper who was Chairman of the Schaumburg Zoning Board and a trustee on the Village Board.    They are a great overview–in more ways than one–of how the village evolved.



The photo above shows the layout of the relatively new Weathersfield subdivision taking place.  We are looking south from the intersection of Schaumburg and Springinsguth Road.  The first homes are to the west (or right) of the intersection along Schaumburg Road.  This is the “W” section where all of the streets start with that letter.  The model homes were on Schaumburg Road, next to the intersection.  Notice how the homes are spread out and have larger lawns in this section.

The big box on the southeast side of the intersection is the first Jewel grocery store in Schaumburg.  Directly in front of the store is the Pure Oil gas station.  To the left of that is Fire Station 1.  Both of these buildings are gone but the Jewel building is still a portion of the Weathersfield Commons shopping center even though Jewel itself has moved further west on Schaumburg Road.

The house that is sheltered in trees on the north side of Schaumburg Road, was originally built by Mr. Ode D. Jennings, owner of The Barn property.  Sometime before 1938, Mr. Jennings built the house for his cousin Everett, who served as his attorney.  Miss Irma Fischer who was a secretary in Everett Fischer’s law firm also lived in the house.  This house was later moved down Springinsguth Road to where it still stands today.

There was another, smaller home on the property where Mr. Therman, Ode Jennings’ chauffeur lived.  According to D. Nelson who grew up in the area, this property was eventually sold in the early 1950s to Eve Fasse after Everett Jennings and Miss Fischer passed away.

The Barn property is in the middle of the photo, behind and to the left of the Jewel in a wooded glen.  Bock Park is to the left of The Barn.  Houses are already built along Standish Lane as it runs in a straight line from Schaumburg Road to Bock Park.

Looking at this aerial view, it is possible to see how Weathersfield was built in 20 plus phases.  In fact, you can make out the start of  Weathersfield  Way stretching towards the east.  As land was purchased, new phases were planned and added to the existing development.  Of course, prices went up too!



The view of this photo is looking southwest at the Weathersfield subdivision from the area near Schaumburg High School.  According to a reader of the blog, the timing is 1965-66 because Weathersfield Unit 5 appears to be completed.   Everything from the photo above is also in this photo.

Schaumburg Road is the straight road running through the right side of the photo with Springinsguth Road being the other straight road running perpendicular to it through the subdivision.

Springinsguth Road hits Wise Road, another straight road running east to west in the photo.

Laid out neatly in a grid are parts of the Hanover Highlands subdivision, which can be seen in the upper middle of the photo.

Irving Park Road runs at a curving angle through the middle of the photo.  You can see the unincorporated Spring South subdivision between Wise and Irving Park.  Also, notice the big pond on the left side of the photo.  It is now encompassed by the Ruth McIntyre Conservation Area.

Lake Street is also in the upper portion of the photo, running parallel to Irving Park Road.  And, of course, Barrington Road bisects both of those roads through the entire upper portion.  It clearly ends at Lake Street.The view of this photo is looking due north from Irving Park Road coming in at the angle to its intersection with Wise Road, just east of Barrington Road.



The Milwaukee Road rail line is on the bottom of the photo.  Bisecting it is Rodenburg Road.  Where it hits Irving Park Road, you can see St. John Lutheran Church on the SE corner of the intersection.

Due west of Rodenburg is Long Avenue.

On the far left of the photo, just beyond the intersection of Irving Park and Wise is Hanover Highlands.

Between Irving Park and Wise is the Spring South subdivision.

North of Wise is the Weathersfield subdivision with the Nathan Hale School property on Wise looking like it’s being prepped for construction.  Hale opened in 1969 so we can probably date this photo around 1967 or 1968.

In the upper right portion of the photo is the very wooded area of Sarah’s Grove.  Quite a dense patch of timber, isn’t it?  Timbercrest subdivision is being developed to the south of the trees.

The various parcels of Hoffman Estates are to the north of Sarah’s Grove as are the Highlands in Hoffman Estates.

Note the other two wooded areas.  The portion to the upper left is the Walnut Grove portion of Hoffman Estates between Higgins and the Tollway.

The portion in the upper center is Highland Grove in Hoffman Estates, north of the Tollway.  It is now the Paul Douglas Forest Preserve.



The view of this photo is looking northeast towards the Weathersfield subdivision in the center.  Springinsguth runs through the subdivision with the “W” section nicely built out on the west (left) side of the road.  Clearly, development is very much happening on various sides.

The Hanover Highlands subdivision is also under construction in the southern part of the photo.

Sarah’s Grove and Timbercrest are visible in the upper central portion of the photo with development just beginning.

The Parcels of Hoffman Estates as well as the Highlands are in the top left of the photo.

Looking at these photos, it’s clear how Schaumburg Township was developed in much of a jigsaw puzzle approach.  Putting a piece here and then a piece there depended on when parcels became available from the farmers themselves or from the developers who had purchased the farms as an investment as the area begin to explode.  People like Mr. Helsper, who served on the Zoning Board, Village Board and other commissions, definitely had their work cut out for them!

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library

*Many thanks to Tom Helsper, Matt Helsper’s son for passing on these photos.  What a great resource!
**These photos were used with the permission of  UTC Aerospace Systems.  



  1. Fred Luft Says:

    These are great aerial views. Glad that you listed where roads are, buildings and sub-divisions are.

  2. Cecily Atcher Wingsong Says:

    The Helsper/ Ellis property was actually on the Southwest corner of Schaumburg and Plum Grove Roads.

    • jrozek Says:

      Thank you for spotting this error! I’ve updated the posting.

      Jane Rozek
      Local History Librarian
      Schaumburg Township District Library

  3. Bill Shelly Says:

    Any chance you can replace the scanned photos with higher resolution scans? These are too small to make out much in the way of details. Understandably, the photos will be grainy, but at least larger. And while I appreciate that these are likely part of the library’s collection, is the HUGE watermark really required? Why not a small “bug” in the bottom or top corner so we know it is part of STDL, but not covering the details. Thanks.

    • jrozek Says:

      Hello Bill,

      I was able to up the size of the photos to a certain extent. The blog has only a certain amount of space so I contain the size of the photos as much as possible.

      These photos are under the copyright of UTC Aerospace Systems. They were originally the property of Chicago Aerial Survey which later became Recon Optical, a Department of Defense contractor. Recon was bought a couple of times over and is now under the purview of UTC. Because UTC owns the copyright, it was necessary to contact them for permission to use the photos. They graciously allowed me to use them on this blog with the agreement that I would use our watermark.

      I hope this explains things a bit…

      Jane Rozek
      Local History Librarian
      Schaumburg Township District Library

  4. Dan Says:

    The second photo is from 1965-66 as Weathersfield Unit 5 looks to be complete. Interestingly, there is a gap in Braintree just south of Schaumburg Road.

    Jane, photo #1 does not allow it to be displayed full size when you open it up in a separate window.

    • jrozek Says:

      Hello Dan,

      I’ve fixed Photo #1 and added the data you passed on regarding the age of the photo. Thank you for the info!

      Jane Rozek
      Local History Librarian
      Schaumburg Township District Library

      • Dan Says:

        After studying these pictures more, I am thinking they all might be from the same time. If you notice, all completed Weathersfield Units are the same in both pics and the Unit to the south-west of Springinsguth and Weathersfield is being prepared. You can make out the outlines of these streets: Kingston, Brockton, Westover, Norwell and Slingerland. I can’t remember the Unit number on this section but it was completed 1967-8.

        Plus it looks like Jane Addams Jr High is still an empty parcel in all pictures without anything going on so I am guessing these pics are all from around 1967.

  5. Tom Helsper Says:

    Dan, you are correct. They are all stamped September 25, 1967. They were all taken on the same flight.

  6. Fred Luft Says:

    Tom, thanks for providing these great photos, so that Jane could post them. Brings back a lot of memories. In Sept 1967 I had already been living in Hoffman Estates 10 years and just starting my freshman year at Conant H.S. . I was just a few years old when my parents moved in Sept 1957.

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