From which the township receives its name is the geographical centre of the township, on the southwest corner of section 15, the northwest corner of section 22. James Little and Dr. William H. Wendow located the village on the 31st day of July, 1849, and procured the services of Leonidas Horney, then county surveyor, to survey and plat the town.
Dr. William H. Wendow built the first house in the village, a small log cabin in 1847, and also kept the first store, soon after the village was laid out. A post-office was established in 1847 and Dr, William H. Wendow received the appointment as postmaster. John Dale opened the first blacksmith shop in 1847. The first physicians to practice in the village were Dr. W. H. Wendow and Dr. Hosea Davis. The first school-house built in the village, was one made of round logs, in 1849, and was occupied until 1856, when a neat brick building, two stories, was substituted for the log hut. The different congregations united in the erection of a neat frame building in 1847 for the purpose of worship, and was known as the Union church. Religious services prior to that time were held in the school-house. This old building was destroyed by a hurricane which swept over the village on the 26th day of October, 1856, and left but three houses standing, and they in a wrecked condition. Fortunately no lives were lost at the time, though Mr. W. H. Crawford, an aged farmer who happened to be town, was so seriously injured, that he died from the effects of his injuries in a short time.
Steam Flouring Mill.--This mill was built in 1878, by its present proprietors, George M. Matheney & Sons, at a cost of about $3,000. It is a substantial two story frame building, with one run of burrs, and finds steady employment in doing a strictly custom business.
General Store.--James L. De Witt.
Tile Factory.--Just being constructed, Erwin & Barron.
Blacksmiths.--Miles K. Barron, and James McGee.
Wagon Maker.--Joseph Logan.
Carpenter.--E. F. Roberts.
Physicians.--Dr. Hosea Davis and H. H. McCabe.
A well kept cemetery of one acre located in 1851 northwest of the village contains the remains of many loved ones whose last resting place beneath the shade of forest trees is marked by the humble wooden slab, the plain marble or the handsome pile. The first interment made was that of the remains of Mabel Horton.
The village is supplied with two neat brick churches. The Methodist Episcopal Church was built in 1857, and Rev. W. F. Lowe is the pastor in charge. The Baptist Church was erected in 1857, and is presided over by Rev. Sanders. A pretty little white, frame school-house graces the village, and plainly shows that the citizens are not neglecting the educational duties they owe their children. They have a term of nine months. There is but one department. The village has never had any organizations. The streets are broad, well shaded, and run at right angles. The houses are new, and bear evidence of the thriftiness of their inhabitants. There are several very pretty residences, both frame and brick.
Excerpted from The Combined History of Schuyler and Brown Counties, Illinois, 1882
Transcribed by Robin Petersen and Karl Petersen for Schuyler County ILGenWeb
Copyright 1999, 2000 Robin L. W. Petersen; all rights reserved. For personal use only. Commercial use of the information contained in these pages is strictly prohibited without prior permission. If copied, this copyright must appear with the information.
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