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.


  1. Bob Dohn Says:

    Having moved to Schaumburg in 1971 and lived here almost continuously since then, I really enjoy the monthly look backs. Some of the items are familiar, others I was unaware of. Thank you, Jane, for the research and hard work you do to create them.

    • jrozek Says:

      Thank you for the kind words Bob. This method of celebrating Schaumburg’s 60th anniversary has proven to be way more popular than I thought. Glad you like it!

      Jane Rozek
      Local History Librarian
      Schaumburg Township District Library

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