March 24, 2019

If you look at the Yelp reviews for Lou Malnati’s in Schaumburg, one of the things you’ll notice is that many people believe the building is an old house that was, at some time, remodeled into a business. Given that the early history of this building is unknown, it’s possible that it did start its life as a house, but it’s doubtful. The location is just too good.

The intersection of Schaumburg and Roselle was the heart and soul of Schaumburg Township during the rural period. It’s where the farmers came to do business in the sparsely populated area. There was, at various times, within easy walking distance of the intersection, a general store, a hardware store, a blacksmith, a bank, a garage, a grain mill, a creamery and a hotel/tavern.

While we do not know the exact year that the building was erected, the best guess we have is from the Schaumburg Township portion of the 1875 Van Vechten and Snyder’s Real Estate Map of Cook & DuPage Counties. The map shows a building directly on the corner of the intersection. Given that other buildings around it are listed as a wagon shop, blacksmith and school, it was obviously a commercial corner. Taking a look at the same map for 1870, there is nothing on the corner. So, somewhere between 1870 and 1875, the building could have been built.

Interestingly, Wayne Nebel, the longtime owner of the building during the 1960s, 70s and 80s stated in a Daily Herald article from January 1, 1975, “As near as we’ve been able to tell, it’s about 90 years old.” This would mean it was built around 1885. Given the fact that Mr. Nebel came from the German farming contingent, he might have gotten his facts from some of the locals who knew of the building either personally or from their ancestors. So, maybe his judgement is correct.

That being stated, the next time we find any mention of the building is in a 1901 article from the Daily Herald. This article mentions that on June 25, H.C. Hattendorf or Herman C., would be turning over his hotel and saloon to Henry Quindel (pictured below.) I also discovered that Hattendorf is mentioned in the 1900 census as a “saloon keeper.” His age at the time was 26 so we know he hadn’t held the job and/or owned the building for long–and that someone definitely came before him.

Another mention in the November 3, 1905 Herald states that “H.E. Quindel quit biz at the old stand Nov. 1 and turned the keys of the hotel and saloon over to Jno. Fenz who will open a hardware and farm machinery story there next spring…in [the] charge of Herman Fenz with Herman Gieseke as tinner.”

An article from the Palatine Enterprise of January 26, 1906 says that “John Fenz & Son expect to open their new hardware store, about Feb 15. Louis Menke and his force of carpenters were transforming the old Quindel hotel and saloon into a model store. A new glass front will be put in the west side fronting the prospective Palatine, Roselle & Wheaton Electric R.R. A fine large cabinet that cost $300 with counter, numerous drawers, pigeon holes and glass front, will afford a model and convenient place to display cutlery, fine tools and fancy goods. A splendidly equipped tinshop will occupy the old ball room. The business at this new establishment will include a complete line of light and heavy hardware, stores, farm implements, etc. Herman Fenz will manage the new store, and Herman Gieseke, who has served 6 years with Reynolds & Zimmer at Palatine, will be able to give entire satisfaction, in charge of the tin shop.”

This wonderful description gives us a glimpse at the building’s interior and what it was used for at the turn of the century. If you look at the photo above from 1913, the glass front looks like it was actually part of the front door. Also, it is my understanding that the ball room was on the second floor, separated from the commercial end of things. Imagine carrying all of that tin to the second floor to work on. I suspect, too, that the framed portion on the north side of the building possibly slid aside or dropped down to allow access for merchandise to be brought into the building.

The railroad that is mentioned never materialized, though there were many discussions of it in the paper. It was obviously designed to connect the Union Pacific Railroad in Wheaton to the Union Pacific line in Roselle to the Chicago and North Western Railroad in Palatine. Other potential north/south lines were also proposed at one time or another but the Elgin, Joliet & Eastern was the only one built, even though it was much further west.

This ad appeared in 1909 and, clearly, the Fenz family had sold the store to their tinsmith, Herman Gieseke. In fact, in a 1911 article, the store is mentioned as H. J. Gieseke’s Hardware Store.

This ad from July 25, 1913 throws a bit of a wrinkle into the mix, letting us know that Mr. Gieseke relocated to a new building. Unfortunately, not only am I unsure which building it was but, a year later, in the September 18, 1914 paper, it was reported that “H.J. Gieseke’s hardware and grocery store” burned.

A few years passed with no mention of who was occupying the building on the corner. The next tidbit appears in the November 14, 1919 issue of the paper where it mentions that the “first social hop of the season will be given at Freise’s Hall, Schaumburg.” Yet another mention in the May 14, 1920 paper advertises another social hop at the same place. Both record Ed. Diekman as the manager. Curiously, Mr. Diekman’s profession in the 1920 census is listed as merchant of a cigar store.  We can only assume he was operating a cigar business in the old hardware store as we know, for sure, that the Fenz store on the southwest corner of the intersection and Lengl’s tavern were definitely occupied.

The next time we meet him is in the October 17, 1924 paper that mentions “E.H. Diekman is getting lined up to start a general store in the former hardware store.” So, we presume he was expanding his cigar business and, in fact, a later article in early 1925 says, “One of those good old time programs will be given Saturday evening Feb. 16th in the Diekman hall above the Schaumburg store…” It didn’t last long because, by November 20 of the same year, it is reported that he had discontinued his business.

We then have another gap in ownership until 1930. We’ll meet more owners next week as the history of building that is Lou Malnati’s continues…

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library


March 17, 2019

The footage is amazing because some of it has never before been seen by the public.

The magnificent engines of the Saturn V rocket fired with latent, unleashed power necessary to propel the men into space.

Rows and rows of white-shirted men monitored their analog screens with manuals perched on the tables in front of them.

Thousands of people came to Cape Canaveral to see the lift off, camping out in their cars and tents or simply sleeping in a sleeping bag on the beach. There was the occasional glimpse of celebrities, people like Johnny Carson and Lyndon Johnson, who wanted to be a part of it too.

There are periodic mentions of the heart rates of the astronauts. During the launch, Armstrong’s rate was reported at 110, Collin’s around 95 and Aldrin’s, shockingly low, near 88.

The moments as the lunar module descended foot by foot to the moon are captured, and the tautness of the unknown is palpable.

The director’s dual screen uniquely captured the camera footage, on both the lunar module and the command module, as they slowly, carefully docked in their tense rendezvous after the moon landing.

The welcome home parade, set against the backdrop of beautiful, sunny Chicago, is featured prominently, with wildly cheering people and Secret Service agents running alongside the astronauts’ convertibles.

The colors are sometimes startling. The bright summer clothes worn by the people on the beaches. The oranges and reds of the rocket as it fired. The bright, kapton foil on the lunar module, in contrast to the dull color of the moon. The heat shield of the command module as it moved through the earth’s atmosphere. The beautiful parachutes lowering the space capsule into the ocean. And, of course, the swirling whites, greens and blues of planet earth as seen from space.

The sheer science of it all is breathtaking. And the geometry. Wow, the geometry. The math that was required to get the three astronauts to the moon and back is especially noteworthy, give the small margin for error–and the fact that all of it was done without calculators.

And, lastly, there is the utter calm and professionalism of the three astronauts, Neil Armstrong, Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin and Michael Collins as they go about their duties, interjecting occasional humor when time allowed.

Apollo 11, the newly released documentary directed by Todd Douglas Miller, tracks the mission to the moon in 1969. The world watched in suspense as the rocket finally took off and began the many maneuvers required to get the astronauts to the moon and back. During the eight day voyage that began on July 16 we, on earth, ate, slept, went to work, and enjoyed our summer.

But we were attuned. To both the tenseness of the situation and to our radios and televisions that tracked the steady progress of the journey. When it was over, and the astronauts were back on planet earth, there was relief, there was sheer joy and there was overwhelming pride. The three astronauts had most assuredly reserved their place in history as the heroes we revere today.

The people of Schaumburg Township, though, paid their respects in a way that is evident nowhere else in the country. In 1971, as a result of the area’s furious growth, Schaumburg Community Consolidated School District 54 opened four elementary schools, naming three of them in honor of Armstrong, Aldrin and Collins.

All four schools built that year–including Dirksen–are identical, as you can tell in the photos below.

If you look closely enough at the sign for Aldrin School, you can see that the mascot is the eagle. This is a direct reference to the Lunar Module that landed on the moon and was named the “Eagle.” It was–uncoincidentally–piloted by Buzz Aldrin.

On Armstrong School is their mascot of an astronaut, which requires little explanation!

Below is Collins School, named for the command module pilot who orbited the moon while Armstrong and Aldrin took those giant leaps for mankind.


Scattered throughout the district, these schools are a steady, gentle reminder of a  stunning voyage that happened 50 years ago this summer. The astronauts gave the best parts of themselves on that trip.  Two years later, Schaumburg Township returned the favor and thanked them in the best way they knew how.

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library



March 13, 2019

What: “Dairies to Prairies”  This free exhibit, presented by the Elgin History Museum, explores the history of the area’s remarkable dairy heritage. At one time, there were over 140 dairies, dairy farms and creameries in a 50-mile radius around Elgin. Now, there are only three dairies left.

Who: The Hoffman Estates Historical Sites Commission

When: Saturday, March 23, at 1 p.m.

Where: at the Sunderlage House, 1775 Vista Lane, Hoffman Estates, IL 60169

For more information, call Sue at 847-781-2606.

(The Wilkening Creamery listed below as the “Artesian Creamery” was along East Schaumburg Road, across from Spring Valley Nature Sanctuary. You can read about it here.)


March 10, 2019

We begin another year. How quickly time goes by. This is a special year for our village. We celebrate 60 years as the Village of Hoffman Estates.

As Historian, I’ve always marveled at the strength and determination of those who first moved here from the city for the opportunity to buy an affordable home for their family. The homes in the first development by F & S Construction, called Parcel A, are more than 60 years old as the first homes were built in 1955-56 and are now 64 years old. Many have changed. They’ve been upgraded and added on to. Some have been torn down and replaced with much larger homes that suit the ½ acre lots. The area still has that rural feel to it.

Life was so different then. 1959 was a year that introduced so many more “modern conveniences”. With new homes to furnish, I can imagine that many of the women wanted to upgrade the kitchen to include a dishwasher, a larger cook stove, and maybe one of the new larger screen TVs for the living room. Everyone loved to watch The Danny Thomas Show, Father Knows Best or for the western fans, Wagon Train or Gunsmoke. Back then TV was your evening entertainment along with a nice big bowl of popcorn.

I found a small book titled Back In The Day: 1959, Reflections of a Special Year. It had all the information about what was going on in 1959. Here’s some trivia that you can share. The overall average income was $5,417.00. Clerical work paid $3,782.00 but construction work paid $5,637.00. With all the surrounding suburbs developing along with us, construction workers would’ve been in demand.

Do you remember who was president? Dwight David (Ike) Eisenhower was our President and Richard Milhous Nixon was his Vice President. The President’s salary was $100,000.00 per year. The Vice President’s salary was $35,000.00.

With the promise of postage going up to .55 cents this year, back in 1959 it was nice to only pay 4 cents for a stamp. In 2019 we pay bills on line and communicate with e-mail or texting. No need for a stamp. Going to the movies in 1959 only cost you .51 cents for a ticket.

Do you remember what movie won the Oscar in 1959? It was Ben-Hur staring Charlton Heston who also won for Best Actor. The movie went on to win a total of 11 Academy Awards. We didn’t get our own movie theater for another 7 years. It was the Thunderbird Movie Theater at the south end of the Golf Rose Shopping Center that opened in October, 1966. (It’s the oval shaped building in the photo above.)

Groceries prices seem cheap compared to today’s prices, but we have to remember how small our salaries were back then. Bacon .67 cents a pound, milk was $1.01 a gallon, bread .20 cents a loaf, butter cost .75 cents a pound and coffee was .78 cents a pound. Many of us had a pot of coffee on the stove all day, either in a percolator or a drip pot. There was no Starbucks back then. No Keurig coffee makers. I would always waste so much coffee by making more than I’d drink in one day. This was the year that Maxwell House introduced the “Good to the last drop” advertising campaign.

Wishing you all a healthy and happy New Year!

Pat Barch
Hoffman Estates Historian


March 3, 2019

During Hoffman Estates’ 60th anniversary year of 2019, we will take a look back at the Hoffman Estates you’ve known for the last six decades.  Every month there will be a posting on 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 1959

  • A new Lions Club was begun in Hoffman Estates and Thomas Sandow of Roselle was elected president. They had 16 members and was organized through the efforts of the Arlington Heights and Palatine clubs.
  • Our Saviour Methodist Church prepared to celebrate their first anniversary in Hoffman Estates after having been organized March 16, 1958. During the first year the church purchased five acres from the Meineke’s Honey Farm on the southwest corner of Plum Grove and Golf Roads. In the meantime, they were holding services at Blackhawk School.
  • It was announced that F&S Construction would open four new model homes in their Parcel C development. A split level, three-bedroom Lincoln model lead the lineup.

50 Years Ago In 1969

  • The Village of Hoffman Estates made plans to erect an armed forces honor roll board on village property to honor those who died in Vietnam. The village had its first casualty when Alan Ramsey, son of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Ramsey, was killed in combat on February 2.
  • Magna Mart and Twinbrook Ace were both selling Scott’s Turf Builder giant triple size bag for $11.95. The ad mentioned that in 1959, this would have cost you $13.50. (It’s a good bet that this went like hotcakes in growing Hoffman Estates.)
  • Suburban Imports Motors was selling a Datsun car for $1896 and advertised it as the “world’s best $2000 car.”

40 Years Ago In 1979

  • Kennedy Brothers and 27 young men from Hoffman Estates High School planned to team up to build a three-bedroom ranch house in the Colony Point subdivision. The plan was for them to work five days a week from 10-12 and 1-3. They were part of the building trades program at the school.
  • The Village Board gave approval for the Mobil gas station at Golf and Higgins Road to become a self-service station. They were also given approval to sell convenience food.
  • The Camp Fire Leaders of Hoffman Estates were scheduled to meet at Lincoln Federal Savings & Loan on Higgins Road on Tuesday, March 20 at 9:30 a.m.

30 Years Ago In 1989

  • The village board voted to ban video arcades and their coin-operated machines. A limited number of machines were to be allowed in bowling alleys, movie theaters, restaurants and convenience stores.
  • The Miss Hoffman Estates pageant was looking for young women interested in participating in the pageant that would be held on April 16 at 3:00 p.m. at Eisenhower Junior High School. The winner would go on to represent the village in the Miss Illinois pageant and, possibly, the Miss America pageant. The pageant chairwoman was Debbie Schoop.
  • In a column in the Daily Herald celebrating the village’s 30th anniversary, a question was posed to Barbara Adrianopoli, the Village Historian, “What is the history behind the abandoned building on the corner of Spring Mill and Higgins Road?” Barbara responded by saying this was the site of the Bowling Proprietor’s Association of America and, at one time, also a temporary site for the Hoffman Estates’ post office. (This was on the southeast corner of the intersection where the First American Bank is today. I have not been able to track down when this might have served as a post office. In a Herald article from January 19, 1967, all of the various sites to that date are listed. There is no mention of a temporary site on Higgins Road, although a sub-station was in B & K Realty at the corner of Roselle and Higgins Road from 1964-1966.)

20 Years Ago In 1999

  • The Hoffman Estates Park District was interested in installing a 6-foot high chain link fence around two holes of the Poplar Creek Golf Course to prevent trespassers from cutting through.
  • The Village of Hoffman Estates moved closer to approving an ordinance that would ban the use of laser pointers by minors under the age of 18 except at home.
  • ComEd reported that they did a major tree trimming project in the Highlands area and repaired a number of wires that had been spliced too many times, straightened and replaced some faulty poles and added fuses to several feeder lines in the Highlands. All of these actions were intended to reduce the number of power outages in the area–particularly during major storms.

10 Years Ago In 2009

  • Garibaldi’s was advertising the special of a 16″ cheese pizza “all day, every day” for $8.95.
  • John Porter Kelley who served as the attorney for the village of Hoffman Estates from 1963 to 1970 passed away on March 22. He also helped found St. Hubert Church in 1960.
  • The Canterbury Fields Park project was scheduled to have its first phase completed by August. The Park District board voted to change the site plan and added a cricket field instead of a softball field due to residential interest.

(Photo of Mr. Kelley used courtesy of the Daily Herald.)

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.



February 24, 2019

In Community From Cornfields, the little booklet that keeps on giving, there were two pages devoted to the churches of Hoffman Estates. Rather than photos, drawings were inserted of all of the church buildings in existence at the time.

Two other churches had been formed but did not yet have buildings. They were Community Covenant Church, which was meeting in Blackhawk School at the intersection of Illinois Boulevard and Schaumburg Road, and Highlands Baptist Church whose location was 223 Northview Lane. Their congregation met in Hillcrest School.

The drawings of the church buildings are below. As a small local history quiz, please let me know in the comments below or in an email what the name of the churches are.

Number 1:

Number 2:

Number 3:

Number 4:

Number 5:

Number 6:

Number 7:

Number 8:

Number 9:

Number 10:

As correct answers are sent in, I will switch out the number with the name of the church. Thank you for playing Hoffman Estates Church Trivia!

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library


February 17, 2019

Last week we posted a series of photos from a small booklet that was published for the tenth anniversary of Hoffman Estates. The 1969 booklet was titled “Community From Cornfields.” This week we’ll continue with photos that are centered around some of the District 54 and District 211 schools, and a few of the larger retailers that opened in Hoffman Estates during its first ten years.

Blackhawk Grade School opened in 1958. It was the second school built in, what would be, Hoffman Estates, following Twinbrook Grade School. A history of Blackhawk School can be found in an earlier blog posting. It closed in 1976.

Lakeview Grade School opened the following year in 1959–the same year the village of Hoffman Estates was incorporated. It was built in Parcel C and is on Lakeview Lane. An earlier blog posting discussed the farmhouse that can still be found directly west of the school. Clearly, the site was optimal for both the house and the school.

Winston Churchill Grade School opened on Jones Road in 1965 to serve the children of the Highlands subdivision.

Helen Keller Junior High opened in 1967 and was the second junior high in the district, following Frost Junior High. By 1969 the school district’s offices had moved into trailers next to the school.

Conant High School opened in 1964 and was the first secondary school in the township to serve students who lived in both Hoffman Estates and Schaumburg. Fremd High School (the insert) opened in 1961. All Hoffman Estates students north of the tollway attend Fremd.

This wonderful photo gives us a bird’s eye view of the first Jewel that opened in Hoffman Plaza in the summer of 1959. It was a much needed grocery store for the new residents of Schaumburg Township.

With that iconic water tower behind the grocery store you can tell that the orientation of the shopping center faces south towards Higgins Road. You can also see a barber shop off to the left with other stores in between. Maybe some of you can identify what they would have been in 1969?

If you know Hoffman Estates history at all, you recognize this building as the Fireside Roll Arena which opened in 1975 after the booklet was published. This is actually its predecessor, the Magna Mart department store, that was built for this location and opened in May of 1968.

Their advertisement in the May 3, 1968 paper said that they had 52 departments that included: clothing, home furnishings, electronics, paint, jewelry, records, sporting goods, patio, family shoes and a snack shop to name a few. They did not last long and seem to have closed their doors sometime in 1970 or 1971 as there is nothing in the paper beyond February 1970. Does that sound correct?

Last, but not least, this gem of a photo captures three businesses that were the heart and soul of early Hoffman Estates.

The brick building to the left is the Thunderbird Theater which opened in 1966. The business in the center of the photo is Grant’s, a one-stop shop department store for the entire family and, off to the far right is the National Food Store. Both Grant’s and National opened in the Golf Rose Shopping Center on October 17, 1963. By the time this photo was taken in 1969, they were fixtures and had been there for six years.

What a wonderful discovery this booklet has been! Next week you will have a chance to take a quiz on the churches of Hoffman Estates. This time, I’m leaving the identifications all up to you!

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library


February 10, 2019

To celebrate the 10th anniversary of Hoffman Estates in 1969, the village put out this neat little booklet called Community From Cornfields: The Story of the Village of Hoffman Estates.

It is 24 pages and includes everything from a brief history of the village to blurbs on the various village departments to lists of government officials and board members to a list of Hoffman Estates churches.

The library is fortunate to have two copies of the original document that was sent to the Thomas Guiney household on Northview Lane and the Carl Soderholm household on Bonita Drive. The most interesting part of the little booklet, though, are the surprising number of photos that are here for you to check out.

This is a photo of the Gieseke family farm that was originally located off of Bode Road and is currently the site of the Children’s Advocacy Center, St. Hubert Catholic Church and School, Alliance Fellowship Church and Hoffman Estates Fire Department Station 21.

The Giesekes sold the farm in 1943 to Arthur and Dorothy Dalton Hammerstein. They lived there until 1954 when Arthur passed away and Dorothy subsequently sold the farm to Jack Hoffman of F & S Construction.

This photo probably looks familiar to you. It is the Gieseke/Hammerstein house that became the Hoffman Estates village hall and is today’s Children’s Advocacy Center. When Dorothy Hammerstein sold the property to F&S, they used the house as their field headquarters. F&S then relinquished the property to the Village in 1959 and they adapted the house as their municipal center.

At the time of the printing of this booklet, the village was trying to decide what to do with the property as they felt they had outgrown the building and needed a more modern structure. “The Trustees are reluctant to tear down more than a hundred years of history, however, our growing community requires a decision soon.” To their great credit they preserved the house and it exists as one of the oldest structures in the village today.

It was, initially, a bit puzzling to discern what we are looking at in this aerial photo–except that the big grove of trees had to be either Sarah’s Grove or Walnut Grove. It took a bit but the thing I kept going back to is the diagonal road that crosses through the upper middle of the photo. It had to be Illinois Avenue. When I looked more closely I could see Schaumburg Road in the middle of the photo on the far right. It bisects Sarah’s Grove which puts the Timbercrest subdivision in the very foreground of the photo. Friendship Village is yet to be built, since it opened in 1974. Thus, we are looking at Parcel C and the Highlands in the background.

We then move into the photos that cover some aspects of Hoffman Estates government that were in place in 1969. This was Village Clerk Grace Kindelin’s office.

Fire Station #1 opened in 1960 and, sixty years later, exists as Station #21.

This was Fire Station #2 that was located at 469 Hassell Road. This station existed until 1974 when the village sold the building to the Schaumburg Township Public Library. The library used the building as their Hoffman Estates Branch Library until 1992. It was later torn down and the current Branch Library was erected on the spot.

The Village Board’s chamber was the location for all board meetings.

The three photos above represent the Hoffman Estates Park District which was formed in 1964–five years after the formation of the village. None of the photos are identified in the booklet. The top two are clearly built around a pond or a lake–and are possibly the same park. (The consensus in the comments below indicate that this was Evergreen Park near Lakeview School.) The last photo is likely the Community Pool.

Other photos, such as the ones below, represent the various parades that took place in the young village.

If you recognize any of the parades or locations of the parks, please leave something in the Comments or send me an email. It would be great to put a name to the location.

Next week, schools and businesses will be featured. The businesses, in particular, were a wonderful surprise!

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library


February 3, 2019

During Hoffman Estates’ 60th anniversary year of 2019, we will take a look back at the Hoffman Estates you’ve known for the last six decades.  Every month there will be a posting on 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 1959

  • Another vote for incorporation was held on Saturday, February 21 from 6 A.M. to 6 P.M. at 117 Cumberland Street which is in Parcel B, just off of Roselle Road. The pro-incorporation group held a party at the Buggy Whip (Easy Street Pub) the night of the vote.  The proposal, however, was defeated by a vote of 276-142. Another vote was scheduled for September.
  • A Hoffman Estates unit of the League of Women Voters was formed as a branch of the Palatine chapter. Women who helped organize the unit were Cleis Jensen, Sally Probst and Louise Dennett.
  • A Valentine Square Dance was held at Our Saviour’s Methodist church on Saturday, February 14 starting at 8:30. Refreshments were served and donations of $1 per couple were requested to attend. The Dance committee was headed up by Gloria Bowen on Geronimo Street.

50 Years Ago In 1969

  • A new publication called “Community From Cornfields,” celebrating Hoffman’s 10th anniversary, was all the rage. Hank Linton, a commercial artist on Edgemont Lane, contributed a two-page drawing of local churches and designed the brochure’s layout.
  • The first four-bedroom ranch model houses in Hoffman Estates were offered in the new High Point subdivision by Hoffman Rosner.
  • Hoffman Estates Village Board rejected a zoning appeal for Photo-Mat to erect a 24-hour photo processing and developing booth in the Golf Rose Shopping Center. The booth was to be built with a styrofoam core surrounded by an aluminum skin and glass. It was rejected because of the potential for increased traffic and a lack of sanitary facilities. [Sidenote: Didn’t one of these eventually get built, next door in the Annex Shopping Center?]

40 Years Ago In 1979

  • Mobile classrooms at Hillcrest School in Hoffman Estates and Collins and Dirksen School in Schaumburg were scheduled to close at the end of the school year due to declining enrollment. Room was, once again, available in the school buildings.
  • Hoffman Estates offered a $1 million low-interest loan through village-sponsored bonds to Nederlander Organization of Detroit who was developing the Poplar Creek Music Theater which was being developed at an overall cost of $15 million.
  • After five years of planning, the Suburban Medical Center of Hoffman Estates was close to being built. The exterior walls were up and the interior was close to finished. Chuck Iobe, the administrator, was happy with the numerous windows, the circular nurses’ stations and the cheerful, orange, red and blue walls.

30 Years Ago In 1989

  • The Dominicks at 2575 W. Golf Road was all set for Valentine’s Day and was offering .79 Suave shampoo, Gallo table wines 3/$7.98, Kodak film for $2.69 and diamond earrings for $7.99. Not to mention cologne, lipstick and candy!
  • Village officials approved the construction of Woodfield Lexus in Hoffman Estates to be built at the corner of Higgins Road and Evanston Street. It was built next to Resnick’s Hyundai and was its first location in Schaumburg Township.
  • As part of Hoffman Estate’s 30th anniversary, the Daily Herald accepted questions regarding the history of the village. One of the questions was “When, where and why did Hoffman Estates first annex north of the tollway?” The answer that was provided by the village was: This annexation took place in 1961. There was a land developer who wanted some farm land annexed to the village of Hoffman Estates for the purpose of receiving village services for his development. The Northwest Tollway separated the potential development from the existing village of Hoffman Estates. The decision was finally made to annex by way of Barrington Road over the tollway to Central Road and then including the area that is now Winston Knolls.

20 Years Ago In 1999

  • The sale of Hoffman Estates Medical Center became final February 1 and it would be now known as St. Alexius Medical Center. They also closed on Woodland Hospital, a related-mental health facility that was nearby on Moon Lake Boulevard.
  • Hillcrest School was accepting applications for their new concept school that would group different grades together and design customized learning plans for each student. They had already received 294 applications for 300 openings.
  • The Village of Hoffman Estates issued a proclamation to an ailing Walter Payton offering him “their concern, care and ecumenical prayers” as a “Hoffman Estates business entrepreneur, professional football player and gentleman.” Mayor McLeod hailed him as a “great corporate neighbor” who contributed to numerous local programs such as the Children’s Advocacy Center for abused children.

10 Years Ago In 2009

  • Lakeview School in Hoffman Estates (as seen in the photo above) was celebrating its 50th birthday and was seeking former students, PTA members, community friends, families, teachers and staff who attended or worked at the school to attend the 50th celebration. Lakeview School opened in 1959–the same year the village was incorporated.
  • Susan Kenley-Rupnow, who served as member of the Hoffman Estates Village Board from 1985 to 2005 and then went on to serve as a board member for the District 211 board from 2007 until her death on February 14. She followed her father, John Harmon, who served as a village board member in the early 1960s and was instrumental in pushing for the Public Works building in 1986 and 1987.
  • The Tyson American Cup was held at the Sears Centre arena on February 21 and featured David Sender, Jordyn Wieber and Joseph Haggerty in the international gymnastics competition. Olympic greats like Mary Lou Retton, Kerri Strug and Paul Hamm were on hand to sign autographs.

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.


January 27, 2019


When I was at Woodfield Mall about two months ago, I stopped by the Guest Services Desk and asked the staff if they knew which restaurants and stores had been in the mall the longest.

The mall opened in September 1971 with Marshall Fields and Sears as the first two anchors. J C Penney opened in October and Lord & Taylor opened two years later in 1973. But, outside of the anchors, what were the oldest establishments? Were there any that have been continuously operating since the mall opened?

We batted it around a bit and surmised that the longest running restaurants were A&W, McDonald’s and Sbarro Pizza. Struggling to come up with the longest running stores, we could only think of Eddie Bauer as a possibility. Then, a light bulb went on and the staffer thought it might be some of the jewelry stores. With that, I had something to start with.

To research the question, I took a look at the list of stores on Woodfield’s website and compared it to the 1982 Schaumburg phone book, which is the oldest in our collection.

The only two restaurants listed on both the website and in the phone book were McDonald’s–and one we hadn’t considered–Baskin-Robbins. After checking the Daily Herald, it looks like both restaurants opened around 1977. Sbarro opened in 1984 and A&W opened either the same year or in 1985. So the restaurants are:

  • McDonald’s
  • Baskin-Robbins
  • Sbarro
  • A&W

The jewelry stores wound up being a good guess because both C.D. Peacock and Rogers & Hollands were on both the website and in the phone book–along with the following businesses:

  • C.D. Peacock
  • Rogers & Hollands
  • Fannie May
  • Foot Locker
  • The Gap
  • Hickory Farms
  • New York & Company (formerly Lerner Shops)

I then checked these against the 1971 Daily Herald to see if any of them were mentioned in articles, ads or classified ads. Lo and behold four of them were here in either September or October of 1971.

  • Hickory Farms (September 1971)
  • Lerner Shops/New York & Company (September 1971)
  • Fannie May (October 1971)

Think about it, Woodfield Mall is two years shy of celebrating its 50th birthday and, outside of the anchors, three stores have been in business for the entire duration. Imagine the number of customers who’ve gone through their doors, the number of times they’ve changed locations, renovated their stores and how many employees from Schaumburg Township worked for these retailers. What an amazing run they’ve had!

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library