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

I’ve started the first column on the history of Hoffman Estates to honor our village’s 60th anniversary of incorporation that occurred on September 23, 1959. I’ll try and tell our history each month during this 60th anniversary year.

This entire area was farm land. So many settlers came here because life in other countries was torn by war, famine and general unrest.  In the 1840s the government sent surveyors to map out the territory, describing the number of rivers, forest land, swamps and streams on each acre they surveyed.

Land was being sold for $1.25 an acre. The promise of good farm land drew the new settlers to this area. The old plat maps of Cook County from 1942 and 1954 show the townships that made up Cook County and the names of the landowners in each township.  As you look at the plat maps, of Schaumburg Township, you can’t help but notice the same family name on other farms in the area. Many times the first families to arrive wrote back to family & friends telling of the good farming conditions and encouraging them to come and start a new life in America.

The earliest settlers to this area came from the east coast.  A large number of Germans, many encouraged by friends and family,  also settled in Schaumburg Township. German became the predominant language of the area and others who did not speak German moved on to farm land to the west.

With the end of World War II came a demand for housing for the returning service men. F & S Construction had been building homes in Arizona. They wanted to create a community of homes for the families of the service men that would be well built and affordable. Looking for new areas to develop, F & S Construction found an area in Schaumburg Township that was very suitable for their next development. The area had the promise of being very successful with a tollway under construction, O’Hara Airport nearby and a willingness of the farmers to sell their farms, they had found an ideal location for their next project.

In 1954 F & S Construction purchased 160 acres of land east of Roselle Road between Golf and Higgins Roads.  An additional 600 acres were added with the purchase of the Hammerstein farm.

This was the beginning of F & S Construction’s plan for a new community that would become Hoffman Estates.

Pat Barch, Hoffman Estate Village Historian

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