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Contents | Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6

The Civil War or, The War of the Rebellion

The events of the Civil War were still on the tongues of old soldiers, as they were called, when we were boys. Some would talk and relate much, while others were reticent to talk of those times unless persuasion was used by one who was well acquainted with them. As a further example of the soldiers who talked but little: some of us were in Ed Rhodes restaurant under the Bank one night when one got to talking to the colored manager about some thing in the Rebellion. There was a mistake in the argument and the facts were not there. The night watchman, Albert S. Henderson, was in there, and from his own experience in that war gave way to his usual quiet, and very interestingly related the facts. Very interesting and instructive were the experiences of the old soldiers to us youngsters. We were always ready to sit and listen.

Probably the majority of the soldiers we learn of around here were enlisted men or were volunteers as they were called. It was common practice though at the time of draft for a man to pay several hundred dollars for a substitute to go for him. While some made no secrecy of it, others have tried to have it forgotten. No mention is here made or recalled.

When Abraham Lincoln called for more volunteers, and Illinois, far exceeding the quota, responded in the slogan "we are coming Uncle Samuel three hundred thousand more," many of our young men said "let's join up for three months; it'll all be settled in that time." They were in for four years. Local groups and organizations did what they could by making and sending provisions for camp or hospitals. Communities were all interested in each others loved ones away in the dangers of battle, in privation or in rebel prisons. Bob Purcell was in three of the rebel prisons and had enlisted as a volunteer for what was thought would be but a short time. John C. Myers came home with a bullet hole all the way through his head and carried a bad scar below his eye till he died. Many never came home, having died in action, prison or hospitals.

The esprit de corps of the "Boys in Blue" was always fine when they got back home from the war. Every Decoration Day was a wonderful day. Old timers came back to Barrington as to a home coming. A long parade was formed, as now, in the morning, following the band to Evergreen Cemetery. Some times the Ringwood (Illinois) Fife and Drum Corps would lead the parade and how they could play such stirring marching tunes as "The Girl I Left Behind Me," "When Johnny Comes Marching Home," and "Yankee Doodle."

The parade was led at one time by Mr. Mayo, we are told, riding a white horse, or, as we later remember it, by Albert S. Henderson, afoot, who in a loud clear voice called the orders of the march. Halting at a veterans graveside, he would announce the name, and say, "The Adjutant will read the record."

The Adjutant was often LeRoy Powers, who would read of the soldiers service, in what Company and Division or Regiment, and whether cavalry, infantry or Light artillery, maybe wounded at such a battle, and mustered out on a certain date. Then the Commander would call out Comrade (naming the soldier in line) will decorate." Off went his war hat and the soldier carefully laid a bouquet on his comrade's grave.

After all soldier's graves were decorated and a speech was heard, back to town they marched where they were dined by the W.R.C., many of whom always marched in the parade. In the afternoon, no church in the community being large enough, they assembled with the band on a big platform erected in the middle of Grove Avenue under the huge soft maples at Powers' or Burlingham's, or around the corner in Lincoln Avenue in front of Gleason's. A male quartet sang and a good speaker gave the oration of the day. In the evening the W.R.C. would put on, annually, one of the best entertainments of the year.

Once in a while a southern soldier in his gray uniform would appear on Decoration Day in the parade. In some places the antipathy of war was dropped and the hatchet buried.

On the Sunday morning before Memorial Day the old soldiers attended some church in the village in a body. In the afternoon a service was held in the North Church at Barrington Center and the graves of the soldiers in the church yard cemetery were decorated. That church, built in 1853 as a Methodist Church, was the enlisting headquarters in this community during the Civil War.

It was felt by the American Legion and the W.R.C. that a historical marker should be placed there to the memory of the place and occasion and to those who enlisted there. A red granite boulder which had lain in the field west of North Hough Street and south of the E.J. & E. Ry., and which was said to have been one of the markers for the old time horseback mail carriers from Waukegan to Elgin, was moved to the west side of the Barrington Center Methodist church and a bronze tablet was mounted on it bearing the names of those who enlisted there in the Civil War.

In the Spring of 1933 Cecil Paxton, Chairman, with the rest of the American Legion committee, Ed. J. Langendorf, Roy E. Wilmering and William Kessler scoured the records of the country and communities around, gathered the names and received financial aid from many in Barrington, Dundee and Elgin, and others interested. On the afternoon of Decoration Day, May 30, 1933, the marker was dedicated by very impressive and fitting ceremonies. Three living veterans of the Civil War who enlisted at that church were there that day: Charles F. Helm of Helm Road, W.D. Ellis and Frank B. Perkins of Elgin. Men of the First World War in uniform were the hosts. Probate Court Judge Charles C. Cutting was the speaker at the dedication ceremony. Memories stepped back more than seventy years.

The Memorial Marker



(Then followed the names of ninety-one veterans, listed in four columns. Below are the two columns to the left:)

Andrew S. Abbott

Benjamin Cockerton

James Gothard

Henry T. Abbott

Cyrus J. Cole

Thomas Gothard

John W. Acker

Joseph H. Collen

Samuel Gould

Frank Applebee

John Cowdin

George S. Griswold

John C. Applebee

Luther W. Davis

Thomas B. Hackett

Ira Benedict

David H. Delano

Safford J. Harlow

John Benedict

Alphonzo De Vol

A.G. Harwood

Orrin Bennett

William DeVol

Franklin W. Hawley

Casius Beverley

Albert Dodge

Hiram W. Hawley

Dwight C. Beverley

Freeman S. Dunklee

Charles F. Helm

Samuel Blakesley

William H. Earl

Lewis B. Householder

John Blanckman

Charles F. Freeman

Johnson Jackson

Richard Boothman

Chauncey Freeman

Edward James

James L. Buck

George Freeman

William James

Hiram D. Cadwell

Horace Freeman

Davis F. Jayne

William Dunham Church


(Here are the names in the two columns at the right)

Wm. Ebenezar Jayne

August Rieke

George Washington Johnson

Timothy Ring

Justus Lane

George W. Robinson

Filkins Llewellyn

Jane A. Robinson, Nurse

Anson Lowe

Watson W. Rowland

William B. Lyard

Eugene Sabin

Daniel Manning

Merril H. Sabin

William McFarland

Zenas Sabin

George W. Miller

Henry Schafer

William Norton Miller

Frederick Schultz

George Morris

George W. Snow

John S. Murletus

Nathan Squires

Edward Nute

Nathan Squires Jr.

Emmett O'Connell

Washington Squires

John O'Connell

Albert Stetson

Charles Otis

Silas Sutherland

John Otis

Winfield Sutherland

Daniel Paul

Garrett Tascha

Frank B. Perkins

Milton S. Townsend

Josiah Pierce

Canlo Webster

George Pounder

Henry G. Willmarth

Henry Reuter

Clark Wolaver


War Record

Barrington has always reverenced the memory of its soldiers. Decoration Day has been truly a Memorial Day, literally and in its memorial program.

There is no record of any early settler in the immediate area who was a soldier in the American Revolution, but local cemeteries hold the graves of veterans of most of the nation's wars since the Revolution. Here is the roster of veterans of early wars who are buried here:

The War of 1812

Six veterans of that war are buried in Barrington Center Cemetery:
Cyrus Haven, died 1890.
John Hendrickson, died Nov. 25, 1877, aged 80.
Timothy James, died Aug. 18, 1858.
Lewis Light, died April 15, 1849.
John Seymour, died Aug. 27, 1876, aged 92.
Capt. George T. Waterman, died Sept. 13, 1880, aged 84.
In White Cemetery: Francis H. Kelsey, died Oct. 3, 1865.
In Evergreen Cemetery: Reuben Stevens, died in 1890.

The Indian Wars

In Evergreen Cemetery are the graves of three veterans:
James B. Catlow, Co. B, 7th Illinois Cavalry.
Oscar Maynard, Co. D, 7th Illinois Cavalry.
Wint Searies.

Spanish American War

In White Cemetery is buried Frederick Linders, 29th U.S. Infantry, who died July 7, 1931.

Grand Army of the Republic "G.A.R."

The G.A.R., a nonpartisan patriotic organization, was composed of honorably discharged soldiers and sailors of the Civil War, having the purpose of keeping alive the old fellowship, caring for the needy survivors, and fostering memorials such as certain monuments of action or the preservation of battlefields. Local organizations were called Posts.

General Thomas W. Sweeney Post No. 275 was organized in Barrington, Illinois, in 1882 by Christopher Dickinson (a druggist where the east end of the laundry is now) with fifteen members. The earliest recollection of their meeting place was in the Parker building north of the slough lot at the northeast corner of Main and Hough Streets. When that gave way to August W. Meyer's two story brick store, they met over Hank Abbott's Drug Store on South Cook Street.

Time took its toll and the ranks began to thin, they "just faded away." Over a period of years on Memorial Day one observing could see the "Boys in Blue" more stooped and more of them using canes; and familiar faces missing from the ranks. As they kept closing ranks, the membership of the local Post went down to nine veterans, and on December 15, 1916, Thomas W. Sweeney Post No. 275 was disbanded and the charter and records sent to the Archives in Washington, D.C. The nine last members here were Fred Lageschulte, Robert Purcell, Sanford Peck, Henry Nordmeier, Robert Reynoldson, Edward R. Clark, Eli Abbs of Chicago, Henry Schaefer of Elgin, and Matthew Umbdenstock of Prairie View. These last veterans of the Civil War were put on the list of social members of the local W.R.C. There were only five members attending the last meeting of the Post when "they broke ranks and were mustered out."

Members of the Post

There are said to have been seventy-nine members of Thomas W. Sweeney Post No. 275, G.A.R., here in Barrington. When the roster of membership was sought after the disbandment of the local Post in December of 1916, it was learned that the records were in the Archives of Washington. However, the following is a list composed from programs of the past:

H.H. Hubbard

F. Hollister

George H. Comstock

Milton E. Henderson

Leopold Krahn

George C. Prouty

Charles C. Senn

Edwin C. Freeman

Samuel Clarke

J. Buck

Lawson Elvidge

W.L. Clark

H.H. Williams

Christopher Sauer

Henry Reuter

Jacob Giss

John C. Myers

J.O. Selleck

Sanford Peck

W.H. Tuttle

Jos. M. Topping

John Bryan

Eli Abbs

John Cowdin

Henry T. Abbott

Enoch Colby

Charles V. Bogart

Frank Filkins

C. Bollenback

F.J. Filbert

W.N. Babcock

E.W. Fenton

Ed. R. Clark

James J. Gothard

John B. Harrower

John Groff

William Humphrey

Ernest Grever

Geo. Wash. Johnson

W. Thurston

George D. Jayne

Christian Knoff

Fred A. Lageschulte

Henry Lohman

Robert Purcell

William Kunz

Henry Seip

Gustav Meyer

H.C. Schaefer

David Meyer

Peter Schultz

Stuart Miller

Jos. C. Whitney

Ernest Packert

Al. S. Henderson

Jacob Sturm

LeRoy Powers

H.H. Church

Hy. Galusha Willmarth

Uriel R. Burlingham

Albert G. Gleason

William Heis

Henry Nortmeyer

C.M. Huntley

Fred Wiseman

J.T. Steepe

James Seizer

A.C. Palback

Christopher Dickinson

Jacob Schley

Lewis H. Bute

Fred Hager

Fred Dohmeyer

W. Hunt

Robert Reynoldson

Matthew Unbdenstock

Richard Boothman

Charles B. Otis

There were other soldiers of that period in the community who may have belonged to this post:

John Applebee

Luther W. Davis

Manning H. Nelson

Frank Applebee

Lyman L. Deill

Philander H. Moulton

Oscar E. Maynard

Edw. Powers

Samuel Gould

Leonard Runyan

Peter Smith

Phillip Schick

C. Dunn

John. H. Shell

Charles Kurzhalz

Woman's Relief Corps "W.R.C."

Thomas W. Sweeney Woman's Relief Corps No. 85 as an aid to the Civil War Veterans, and the vast amount of memorial and patriotic work, was organized here November 17, 1887, with twenty-five charter members: Ada Sellick, Evangeline Clark, Margaret Buck, Emily Lytle, Rhoda Lombard, Kate Runyon, Ann Hollister, Effie Runyon, Nettie Lombard, Margaret Herriman, Libbie Miller, Emma Wool, Hannah Powers, Lillie Hitting, Florence Sizer, Sarah Dohmeyer, Sarah Dickinson, Mamie Whitney, Arietta Sizer, Ada Boot, Grace Bennett, Lizzie Peck, Emma Bute, and Mary (Clark) Nightingale, who died in October, 1947, the last of the charter members.

No organization was more diligent or faithful to its cause. Patriotism was taught to our youth; its activities were always stimulating; and flags were presented to school rooms. They were active in the erecting and dedication of the Boulder Marker at Barrington Center Methodist Church.

One of their outstanding activities was the Soldiers and Sailors Monument in Evergreen Cemetery "erected by the W.R.C." and dedicated September 6, 1906.

Probably the biggest concert program of the year was put on Decoration Day night by the Woman's Relief Corps.

A local group of the Sons of Veterans was organized here at one time but it was not long lived.

At Unveiling of Monument

A program issued at the time of the unveiling of the Soldiers and Sailors Monument in Evergreen Cemetery, Sept. 6, 1906, listed the following members of the G.A.R. and W.R.C.:

General Thomas W. Sweeney Post No. 276, G.A.R.
H.H. Hubbard, Commander.
George H. Comstock, Senior Vice Commander.
Leopold Krahn, Junior Vice Commander.
Charles J. Senn, Chaplain.
Samuel Clark, Surgeon.
Lawson Elvidge, Adjutant.
H.H. Williams, Quartermaster.
Henry Reuter, Officer of the Day.
John C. Myers, Officer of the Guard.
Sanford Peck, Sergeant Major.
J.M. Topping, Quartermaster Sergeant.

Eli Abbs

Ed. R. Clark

Robt. Purcell

Henry T. Abbott

John B. Harrower

Henry Seip

Chas. V. Bogart

Wm. Humphrey

H.C. Schaefer

C. Bollenback

Geo. D. Jayne

Peter Schultz

W.H. Babcock

Geo. Wash. Johnson

Jos. C. Whitney


Fred A. Lageschulte

Barrington Woman's Relief Corps No. 85 Mrs. Ida Bennett, President
Emily Hawley, Senior Vice President.
Emma Wood, Junior Vice President.
M.J. Colekin, Chaplain.
Myrtle Bennett, Secretary.
Miss. Robie Brockway, Treasurer.
Mrs. Millie Cannon, Conductress.
Alice Olcott, Assistant Conductress.
Sarah Dohmeyer, Guardian.
Elizabeth Pletcher, Assistant Guardian.
Sarah Page, Patriotic Instructor.
Addie Lines, Press Committee.
Ethel Bennett, Musician.
Laura Page, Miss Lizzie Gilly, Mrs. H. Carmichael, Ella Jencks, Color Bearers.

Clara Alverson

Irene Waterman

Mary Elvidge

Susan Church

Olive Blocks

Anna Otis

Jennie Bennett

Minnie Foreman

Louise Boehmer

Adie Johnson

Amelia Colby

Amanda Meyer

Virginia Comstock

Sadie Krahn Brush

Louise Hawley

Emily Gleason

Etta Hawley

Lizzie Peck

Anna Hollister

Mina Meyers

Lydia Lytle

Lottie McCay

Emma Lageschulte

Lydia Beinhoff

Emma Myers

Anna Grunau

Hannah Powers

Eva Castle

Kate Prouty

Carrie Kendall

Marion Prouty

Mae Lane Spunner

Julia Robertson

Lena Schultz

Arietta Sizer

Sophia Nordmeyer

Gertrude Schwemm

Eva Tuttle

Mary Schaefer

Paulina Lytle

May Banks

Mrs. Rich. Lytle

Kate Gray

World Wars

The history of Barrington's part in the World Wars and the Korean Conflict is too voluminous to go into detail here. Our community was as active as usual in its patriotic duty. A local draft board was set up in the Blocks Building on South Cook Street (now burned down), and almost every able-bodied man within the age brackets went into some military service. Anxious hearts at home sent their prayers and cheer to their young men scattered over the globe. Some foods were rationed; some materials were restricted by certain priorities. Gasoline and tires were rationed.

Armistice Day following World War I, November 11, 1918, was a joy day for American hearts. Celebrated several days previous on a rumor of peace negotiations, it broke out anew more vigorously on the real day. Some business houses had to close up for the day to preserve order and save stock and property. An early morning parade of adults and children marching up and down our streets with music, singing, noise and gladness of jubilant hearts.

The soldier boys began to come back home. Some had been wounded; Joe Robertson lost a leg October 11, 1918, during the cross fire in the battle of the Argonne Forest; some never came back. Our community lost a number of boys but less than in the second war. In November, 1939, the Review listed eighteen from the Barrington community who had died then or in the twenty-one years since the close of the first World War and that were buried in or around Barrington. Some of that list were killed during the war.

The second World War called more of our young men. The Honor Roll in the west end of the depot park at Cook and Park Avenue listed 647 names in the service, which included eighteen gold star veterans. A complete list of those killed and wounded in these three wars is not here given because, as we are told, it is too difficult to get and anything less than an official list would possibly be inaccurate.

Yet, a list of those killed in the last World War, as enumerated in an issue of the Courier-Review of November of 1945 and again in a May 1946 issue, reads with pathetic feeling for those killed thousands of miles away in several places in Africa, in Asia, and in South America, but with feelings of horror mixed with pride for our own who gave all they could and had for us back home. Ten of them had been Barrington High School students.

There were a number of our men who have been awarded the Purple Heart as wounded soldiers, an who are quietly going about their daily work again. Since the dawn of United States history the record is filled with such as these who, with the builders at home, have made us a nation. We are proud of our American heritage.

The Veterans Memorial Section

The Veterans Memorial Section in Evergreen Cemetery as a burial place for those without relatives or ability to provide for their own grave, was conceived by Roy Willmering, Graves Registrar Appointed by the Government, and Legion Service Officer, in the Spring of 1954, and was perfected by hard work and solicitation. A plot 40 x 82 feet, donated by Evergreen Cemetery Association, was designed for fifty-three graves, including the nine who were already buried there west of the Soldiers and Sailors Monument of 1906. A massive monument of split-faced native granite stone was erected in the center of the lot. The design and layout were the work of our very active Roy Willmering to whom much credit is due beyond the original idea for directing the project to its completion. This Veterans Memorial Section was dedicated by an impressive Memorial Day service, May 30, 1955.

Mr. Willmering informs us that, at the time of dedication of this Memorial Plot, there were buried in and about Barrington, 160 war veterans -- 10 of the War of 1812, 2 of the Indian Wars, 79 of the Civil War, 1 of the Spanish-American War, 45 of World War 1, 11 of World War II, and 2 of the Korean War. 118 of these graves are in Evergreen Cemetery. The others are in St. Paul, White, Smith, and Barrington Center.

American Legion

Barrington's American Legion Post 158 was organized in 1919 and its charter was honored with names of eighty-nine members. By 1952 it had 210 members.

Spencer Otis was the first Commander. Following him, other Commanders were: Dr. W.E. Allen, Wilson Herren, Cecil E. Paxton, Jack Welch, Irving Hager, R.L. Mundhenk, E.J. Langendorf, William Kessler, Noel Stayner, Paul Pohlman Sr., Frank Diehl, Martin Schreiber, Kenneth Shoup, Arthur Martens, Harry Coffman, Paul W. Schroeder, John Matysik, George Dietrich, George Whitcomb, A.G. Bjornberg, William A. Somerfield, Frank Malone, Henry Muth, Albert Heitman, Earl H. Etters, Paul Cameron, Don W. Staehlin, Eugene E. Rounds, Max J. Hembrey, Ray W. Wichman, Perry Conrad, Donald C. Williams, Francis B. Kennedy, Harry A. Lindberg, Roy W. Klepper, Harry Etters, William W. Wilson, Alfred Hauser, James L. Prow. Installed as commander in July, 1963, was Burton Wendt.

The Legion has fostered and promoted civic and patriotic projects. Among them are: sponsoring Cub Pack No. 200; donating the flag pole in the Park, setting up the bronze memorial plaque at the North Church at Barrington Center, granting scholarships to outstanding pupils, cooperation in child welfare, helping drill the school band, buying band instruments, helping the Scouts build the Scout Cabin in the East Park on Russell Street, entertaining at Downey and at Elgin.

The American Legion Auxiliary

The American Legion Auxiliary was granted a charter March 18, 1920. On its charter are 94 women-mothers, wives and sisters of men in the armed forces in World War I. Their purpose is to aid the Legion in its memory of the departed the relief of suffering veterans, presentation of flags to organizations and to instill patriotism in the growing younger generation.

The Veterans of Foreign Wars

The V.F.W.  Post No. 7706 in Barrington was established on June 9, 1946, William Hacker who then lived on Exmoor Avenue being strongly instrumental in its organization. Arthur Conrad was the first Commander and those who followed were: Phillip Johnson, 1947; August Desort, 1948; William Foelschow, 1949; Roy Crumrine, 1950; Louis D. Miller, 1951; Harold Lipofsky, 1952; Edwin Parke, 1953; Ralph Day, 1954; Leslie Willard, 1955; Sidney Kramer, 1956; Burnell Wollar, 1957; Walter Moeller, 1958; Robert Block, 1959; Roy Etters, 1960; Benjamin P. Graber Jr., 1961.

This Post "is especially proud of its Americanism Program." It gives as much as $3,500.00 a year to hospital work. It put the drinking fountain in the Depot Park in May of 1948, which was dedicated on Memorial Day; sponsored a Boy Scout troop, and youth activities.

The V.F.W. Auxiliary, organized in July of 1947, pays monthly visits to Downey Hospital to entertain the Veterans there, and, with the V.F.W., presents flags to the schools, enters keenly into the Children's Hospital work, and that of the Eaton Rapids (Mich.) V.F.W. Home.

The Reserve Militia

The Reserve Militia, properly named Company 37, the Depot Brigade of the Illinois Reserve Militia, and commonly called at that time "The Home Guards", was organized in 1918 during the absence of the regular Militia while in the service of the U.S. Army in World War I.

Attorney Howard P. Castle Sr., was the promoter and was its Captain. Walter I. Martin was First Lieutenant and Arnett C. Lines was Second Lieutenant. Sergeants were George Carmichael Sr., Roy Waterman Sr., and R.M. Lines.

They met regularly for drill in the basement of Catlow's Hall on West Station Street and later drilled in the open field where the A.& P. Store and The Gold Star Motor Company are now on North Hough. Early of a Sunday morning they would march in from the country, deploying as skirmishers through the wet fields at some distance back from the County Line Road, using signals at intervals. Long marches into the country at night added to the practice. The Militia went into camp in Kelsey's field on the Fox River. During the race riot in Chicago our Company was called in and quartered in the North Side Armory. Men took turns standing guard in the rain and all slept on the cement floor.

The Company was disbanded after the close of that war.

The Post Office

Before the advent of Barrington Station on the railroad, mail was collected and left several times a week at certain rural wayside homes or taverns which were usually on a more traveled road or trail like Algonquin Road (then called the Freeport Road) or on Higgins Road.

The Squire Miller home at the northeast corner of Sutton and Algonquin Roads was such a wayside place where mail was left. Another was the old Hecock place where the trail from Little Fort (Waukegan) to Elgin, made by a horseback mail carrier, crossed what is now the Grigsby place from the northeast to the southwest. That trail was still noticeable in more recent years by the dwarfing of the trees.

Frank Hager, who lived as a boy on the Gothard place on West Cuba Road, said that the Hecock log house sat among the yellow plum and apple trees on the north side of the road in the east edge of the woods about where there is a ranch house now, and that that was the first post office in the community. Mr. Hager said it was built of logs with some of the logs projecting inward as supports for bunks. Window holes in the attic like port holes in a fort had wooden doors or shutters on them fastened with leather hinges. He and his boy playmates would look out of the portholes and pretend that they saw Indians coming. He said that the horseback trail had been so well beaten that for years the growth of trees was stunted there, and the trail to this day could easily be seen from a distance by the depression in the tree line. They used to find bits of pottery and relics around the place.

The office at one time was in the Innis Hollister home which stood for many years on the northeast corner of Cuba Road and Route 59 and was much of a town meeting place.

The Little Fort Porcupine reported Aug. 11, 1846, that an Act of Congress had established several mail routes in Lake county. Among them: Dundee via Barrington, Lake Zurich, and Gilmer Gilmer to Libertyville; and another: Janesville via Lake Zurich, Socrates, Rand and Sand Ridge to Chicago. Justus Bangs, first settler at Wauconda, and owner of property in Cuba, held this contract for eight years and made the round trip, a distance of 100 miles, once a week.

Early day post offices were where the postmaster lived or had a place of business. A post office called Flint Creek was established and V.H. Freeman appointed postmaster July 1, 1839. Freman lived on Section 10 in Cuba township. John Sears, who lived on Section 15, was appointed postmaster September 12, 1840. The next postmasters were Abel Keyes, Seth Paine, Leonard Loomis and Alexander Fortune, taking the post office to Ela township. It came back to Cuba with the appointment of Harvey Lambert, October 7, 1847; John J. Bullock, July 26, 1849, and John Jackson, December 18, 1855. Bullock and Jackson probably had their offices on Section 14.

A post office under the name of Serryse was established March 23, 1846, and George Ela, who lived 3 1/2 miles east of Barrington was appointed postmaster. The next postmaster was Frederick Ormsby appointed June 23, 1849; Adam Vandawerker, appointed April 7, 1851, lived next east of Ela. The name of this office was changed to Ela February 16, 1852.

A postoffice was established at Langenheim (Cuba Station) April 26, 1892, with Charles Lederle as postmaster. He was succeeded by Conrad Krause, February 8, 1894, and Krause kept the post office until it was discontinued June 14, 1894.

An office was.established at Chicago Highlands April 10, 1902, and discontinued January 1, 1906. William Hobein was the postmaster.

The Barrington Office

The Barrington post office was established as Barrington Station January 29, 1856, and John M. Porter was appointed postmaster. Postmasters succeeding him, and dates of their appointment, were as follows:

Orson H. Crandall, February 19, 1857.
John M. Porter, June 5, 1857.
George Ela, March 29, 1858.
John M. Porter, May 3, 1858.
John Jackson, November 16, 1859.
David R. Richardson, March 19, 1861.
William Howarth, October 17, 1866.
Ansel K. Townsend, February 22, 1869.
Leroy Powers, August 19, 1875.

Name changed to Barrington May 21, 1883.

Leroy Powers, May 21, 1883.
Dell Loomis*
John C. Plagge, April 16, 1889.
William H. Meyer, June 30, 1893.
Millius B. McIntosh, November 23, 1893.
Henry K. Brockway, August 21, 1897.
George W. Spunner, February 13, 1915.
Henry K. Brockway (Acting), November 11, 1919.
Joseph D. Robertson, May 28, 1920.
Edwin J. Langendorf, February 25, 1931.
Cornelius C. Snyder (Acting), December 21, 1935.
Leslie B. Paddok, February 27, 1937.
Harry Jr. Wilkes, (Acting), October 1, 1952.
Hobart J. Berghorn, July 1, 1954.

*The roster is from official records, with the exception of Dell Loomis, whose name does not appear. He is remembered, however, by the author and others. It is presumed he was appointed during President Cleveland's first administration (1885-89) as postmaster or acting postmaster. He was a Democrat and Powers was Republican.

Porter's office is said to have been in a building on East Station Street where the police station is now located; George Ela's in his store on East Main Street, now the site of Miller Oil Co.; John Jackson lived in what is now the 200 block of South Cook Street and probably had his office in his home. Richardson's office was near the southeast Cook-Park Avenue corner.

Howarth's office was in his store building on Park Avenue. Townsend had his office in the John C. Plagge store, where Plagge later had his own office, and Leroy Powers had his office in his store on South Cook Street. All three of these sites are now within the walls of the First National Bank. Loomis had his office on East Station Street near the present Barrington Laundry driveway. Meyer was in the Lageschulte block on the south side of Main Street.

M.B. McIntosh located his office in a building he owned about the middle of the block on the west side of South Cook Street and it is believed that Brockway remained in this building until the office was moved to the southeast corner of Cook and Station Streets. That was about 1905. Department records show the office at that location until August 1, 1919.

August 1, 1919, the office was moved to a building on the east side of South Cook Street owned by George J. Hager and Henry J. Lageschulte, subsequently occupied for many years as a meat market. September 1, 1929, the office was moved to the Huszagh building at the corner of North Hough and Applebee Streets, and November 1, 1956, to the building at the northeast corner of West Main and Garfield Streets, which was erected especially for post office quarters.

The Barrington office was advanced to the third class on July 1, 1902, to the second class on July 1, 1922, and to the first class on July 1, 1945. It was established as a money order office June 1, 1875, and was designated as a postal savings depository February 24, 1912. Postal savings depositories at Wauconda and McHenry were discontinued during the past year and their accounts transferred to Barrington.

Rural Delivery Service

Rural free delivery of mail began in Barrington June 15, 1904. Four routes were established and the carriers were Charles Hutchinson, Samuel L. Landwer, Ben Freye and Herman Gieske. Hutchinson was the last of the four original carriers here to retire, and when he retired on Feb. 1, 1946, he was the third oldest carrier in years of service in the United States.

The first routes were 25 to 28 miles long, and teams of horses were used for 10 years -- a cold, hard, wet job in bad weather. In 1914 the rural carriers used their own autos, and routes were lengthened to 40 miles.

Freye resigned after a year and was replaced by Fred L. Rieke, who carried the route for 17 years. When Rieke resigned in 1922, Walter L. Nightingale was appointed, but after three years was transferred to postal clerk and H.K. Brockway, who was then serving as a clerk in the office, took the route to have outdoor work. Brockway retired after two years and the route was discontinued.

Gieske resigned in 1911 and was replaced by Francis L. Bennett. Landwer retired June 30, 1934 and his route was discontinued and the entire territory consolidated in two routes. Better cars and better roads had made it possible for the carriers to handle longer routes. Charles Hutchinson and Lovell Bennett were the remaining carriers. They had to handle, sort and deliver mail for about 400 boxes on about 50 miles apiece. And "Hutch" and "Rusty" came back each day smiling.

Increasing density of population was overburdening the carriers and a third route was again established February 1, 1944, and Walter. L. Nightingale was assigned to the route. Five years later a fourth route was established. July 1, 1956, three mounted routes were instituted to better serve the growing subdivisions and the rural routes were again reduced to two. Two additional mounted routes have since been established and in 1963 five mounted carriers are serving routes averaging 35 miles, and two rural carriers are covering about 112 miles.

Village Delivery

Mail delivery in the village was commenced October 1, 1928. Hobart Berghorn was carrier for the south side of the village and Walter L. Nightingale was carrier for the north side. Cecil Paxton delivered the parcel post. The Barrington office in 1963 has 13 regular and three substitute carriers serving 10 full routes, a parcel post route and an auxiliary route.

Before this time of mail delivery, patrons had to call at the post office for their mail. They would peek in the glass window of their box and, if there were any, they stepped to the service window and asked for the mail to be handed to them. A few lock boxes came into later use for a few of the busiest persons who, unlike the majority, did not have the time to wait their turn in line at the window, or till the window was opened after the mail was distributed. The post office in those days was a real meeting place for people by date or otherwise.


One point of keen interest at one time was the fast mail trains, roaring through town as fast as they were allowed to go, and picking off the mail bag on the run. The leather, steel riveted, padlocked mail bag was taken by the postmaster to a crane that stood at one end of the depot platform beside the track and hung on a steel arm projecting close to the passing mail train (so called mail train because it had a mail car attached as well as express, baggage and passenger cars). The mailman in the mail car would open his sliding door a bit and, throw up a shaped arm toward the suspended mail bag and catch it in that arm, he in turn grabbing it and hauling it in for further distribution. Then, throwing out a few bags again at the next town, he would grab the mail bag from the mail crane again. It was a thrill to watch it. Mail was seldom missed, but once in a great while the mail thrown out onto the platform rolled under the train and was mutilated. When the dust from the "flying" train settled, where was the mail bag?

Growing Pains

For these many years the Post Office had been always on the Cook County side of the village and on Cook Street or Park Avenue or Station Street, till on September 1, 1929, Postmaster Joe Robertson moved it from 117 South Cook on the Cook County side to larger quarters on the Lake County side at North Hough and Applebee Streets. That was the first time in seventy-f ive years that the post office of the village was out of the Cook County side.

It is a marvel how much mail was moved in and out of such small quarters as was there and then occupied at Hough and Applebee: Four rural routes to be sorted and loaded; a star route to be sorted and loaded; all of the village carriers sorting out and bundling their mail; local boxes to be filled; heavy mail from Jewel, Barco and Burpee; window services of flat mail, parcels, registered and postal savings; out-going mail to be sorted and bagged and loaded; and constant clerical work and reports. Outside was the congestion of customer's cars on a busy arterial highway, and big mail trucks with out-going or in-coming mail trying to warp into a three cornered alley, besides all the rural cars in the alley or on Applebee Street.

A new and much more commodius building was built for the post office in the summer of 1956 at Main and Garfield after the August W. Meyer home was moved away. The new building was dedicated September 29, 1956, by district officials, U.S. Representative Marguerite Stitt Church and Robert Justice, who was the regional postal service manager for the Illinois-Michigan area. The move to the new quarters was made on Saturday and Sunday of October 14 and 15 with no break in service. It afforded a new loading platform on Garfield, and 4,650 square feet more floor space or nearly double that there had been on Hough Street. In the Christmas season of 1956, the first season in the new place, 396,280 pieces of flat mail went through the cancelling machine, the peak day on December 18 being 56,000 pieces.

Still Growing

On January 1, 1949, Hobart Berghorn was made Assistant Postmaster, and was promoted to Postmaster on July 1, 1954. In 1952 Cecil Paxton was made superintendent of mails, and William Wilson was made foreman of mails. In 1953 Harry Wilkes said this office did over $585,000.00 business and in 1954 did three quarters of a million dollars of business; in 1955 over $808,000.00 business, maintaining over three quarters of a million average ever since.

Cecil Paxton retired September 30, 1956, after twenty-eight years of service, because of ill health. Then Earl Schaefer moved up Paxton's place as Asst. Postmaster, and Orlin H. Neurenberger took Schaefer's place as Supt. of mails. Mr. Wilson had resigned.

In 1955 they had one truck for parcel post delivery. In 1956 mail trucks were furnished this office for its two mounted routes and its one auxiliary route. By 1959 it had four trucks two of which were right hand driven.

A Post Office Department policy to supplant mail train service with truck service for short hauls in metropolitan centers was instituted and since July 1, 1951, all mail in and out of Barrington has been transferred by chartered trucks.

Where the mail messenger once transferred mail between the post office and the depot by hand or with a wheelbarrow, Harry Homuth was the last mail messenger. The government postal authorities then ceased sending mail to Barrington by train. From then on it was hauled in and out of Barrington post office to Chicago by chartered trucks.


The first bank in Barrington was set up in the west end of the Lamey Building at 240 East Main Street early in November of 1889 by Dwigging, Starbuck and Co. as a private bank. Mr. John C. Christ was their Cashier. They were not local men. In two weeks they received their 6700 pound safe from Columbus, Ohio which they advertised in The Review of November 23, 1889 to be "fire proof and burglar proof." In a very short time the stock was bought by Mr. H C.P. Sandman, Mr. M.B. McIntosh and three others.

In September of 1890 the bank moved to one of M.B. McIntosh's buildings, 108 South Cook. Mr. Sandman, who was a thrifty real estate owner and Chicago business investor, and Mr. McIntosh who had been a local lumber dealer for years and who at that time was in the real estate business, went into partnership, and the bank was known as the Bank of McIntosh, Sandman & Co. Both men had been in business on opposite sides of the track. Miles T. Lamey who substituted at times for Mr. Christ as cashier became the cashier for a short time till Mr. Albert L. Robertson returned to Barrington from school and became the cashier in March of 1891 and remained so until its close in 1932.

1893 John C. Plagge, a local merchant, lumber and feed dealer, rebuilt his store at the southwest corner of Cook and Park Avenue, and the corner room of the new brick building was occupied by the bank with a large vault behind the cashier's window.

McIntosh sold his interest in the bank to Mr. Ed. R. Clark, and the name was changed to The Barrington Bank of Sandman & Co. Then very soon Mr. Clark's brother-in-law, Mr. John Robertson, who had retired from his estate at Lake Zurich, joined the company, and it then became The Bank of Robertson, Plagge & Co. Mr. Robertson, too, was a heavy land owner. It was said his father owned 2000 acres in his front door yard south of Lake Zurich.

The private banking business was reorganized in 1913 as the First State Bank of Barrington with John Robertson as president, John C. Plagge as first vice-president, Howard P. Castle as second vice-president, Albert L. Robertson as cashier, and Albert T. Ulitsch, who was a former Western Union man, as assistant cashier.

The growing business of the bank demanded more room, so, the first of January, 1916, the State Bank voted to buy of Mrs. Hannah (Henry, Sr.) Sodt at a quoted figure of $5,000 the south east corner of Park Avenue and Cook Street. The Sodt Building was moved back to the south west corner of the block, and a new brick home for the State Bank was erected. Mr. Henry J. Lageschulte increased his interest in the bank and became vice-president when Mr. Plagge withdrew to organize the First Na.tional Bank of Barrington.

A group of Barrington citizens headed by John C. Plagge considered an additional bank in the community. Plans and organization consequently were perfected in 1918, and on January 19, 1919 the United States Treasury Department issued a charter to the First National Bank of Barrington, Illinois, with John C. Plagge as president, George Lageschulte as vice-president, and Frank C. Pundt as cashier. Capital stock was $25,000.00 and national bank notes were issued by that bank. Mr. Plagge, a pillar of the community, died June 22, 1936, and Joseph M. Friedlander, treasurer of the Jewel Tea Company, was made president. Mr. Pundt left the bank, and Mr. Charles Elsner of Chicago was made cashier.

Occupying at first the corner room in the Plagge Building vacated by the State 108 Bank, they took over the store space in the south portion of the same building in less than five years. George Lageschulte bought the building from the Plagge estate. In 1927 he built on a new front and added the building space of the Leroy Powers store recently run by Phillip A. Hawley. They now own their own building.

Thus Barrington had two banks: the first State on the east side of Cook Street and the First National on the west side of Cook, both at Park Avenue. The run of bank failures following the panic of 1929 had escaped Barrington till in January of 1932 when, after a steady run of withdrawals, the State Bank called in a state examiner on the 28th and was "closed for adjustment." Frozen assets had been slow in liquidating, and, although some stockholders were pouring more cash in, the run on the bank continued to a crisis. A vote of confidence signed by 82 business men was sent to the State Bank officials. An effort was made by the National Bank and by the depositors to take over the business. It required 100% of the stockholders. The committee appointed to secure that consent reported that they lacked the consent of two, so a receiver was appointed. Depositors were repaid about 95%. The stockholders held the empty bag besides paying the receiver assessments double their stock held. The real estate was sold to a syndicate headed by Dr. B.P. Graber.

A tribute by the Barrington Review of February 4, 1932 is worthy of quote: "The statement as of December 31, 1930 showed total deposits of $721,497.22. The statement of December 31, 1931 showed deposits of $385,857.09. The fact that the bank could stand the heavy withdrawals of funds amounting to nearly 60% in slightly less than thirteen months reflects that that institution was in comparatively good condition and under good management. The withdrawals were to a great extent the result of unfavorable business conditions in 1931."

In 1942 the interior of the First National Bank was remodeled to meet the needs of its growing business. In 1947 a new vault and safety deposit boxes were installed in the basement. In 1953 the bookkeeping department was moved to the second floor where doctors had formerly had their offices.

As of June 30, 1934, the assets had grown to over two millions. In December of 1943 to $4,041,828.15. On May 7, 1954, the capital stock and surplus were raised to half a million and reserve to $250,000.00 making a capital structure of three quarters of a million dollars and they declared stock dividends.

Ray Jurs, a local young man who had been in the bank's service for a few years, was advanced in 1939 to the position of cashier. This responsibility he held for four years. In 1955 he was elected president of the bank, Carl O. Anderson was elected Executive Vice President, Russell Paulson was advanced to the position of Vice President and Comptroller.

In 1958 the stairways were changed, an automatic elevator was installed (the second one in Barrington), the whole banking.floor was rearranged to allow twelve teller windows and one sidewalk window on Park Avenue for after hour service. The original door at the north end was brought into use and gave access to the bank by two entrances. In March, 1958, the deposits were $16,106,538.00. In January, 1962, the resources were in excess of $24,000,000.00 and its depositors over 17,000.

As evidence of growth, the expansion of business warranted in 1961 the purchase of the property next door west on Park Avenue, the old Howarth store, later Lipofsky Brothers. The Continental Hardware sold out, the building torn down, and the First National Bank with its large addition handsomely extends both ways from the corner on both Cook Street and Park Avenue.

Trust powers were acquired by the bank January 1, 1959, and on March 1, 1960, the name was changed to First National Bank and Trust Company.

The First Federal Savings and Loan

The First Federal Savings and Loan Association of Barrington was started by a few men in March of 1934 with a beginning capital of $1,836.00. On May 5, 1937, they were granted Charter No. 92 as the First Federal Savings and Loan Association of Barrington, Lake County, Illinois. The first President was Attorney Howard Brintlinger who held that position for about two and a half years. Arnold Sass was Vice President; Wirt Lawrence was Secretary; Q.R. Paulson was Treasurer. These four officers together with Earl Schwemm, Russell Walcott and R.L. Huszagh were the board of directors.

Their first business home was in the Real Estate Office of Wirt Lawrence at 116 East Main Street for about fourteen years. Their next home was in the Lamey Building at 240 East Main. After three years there, they moved into their own new building at 115 South Hough Street in 1953.

Arnold Sass, who followed Howard Brintlinger as President, resigned June 30, 1958, after nineteen years in office. He was followed by Martin H. Schreiber who had previously been president for one year but withdrew till he recovered his health.

Twenty years after its organization the assets had grown to two and a half million dollars with over thirteen hundred saving accounts. In 1960 its assets were $6,353,437.00 with 3348 accounts.

Public Library

There has always been a keen interest in culture, an eagerness for knowledge, among our Barrington people. The old Literary Society, the Debating Club, both before we had a high school, and the Chautauqua Circle which studied art, literature and history, and even an attempt at one time to establish the Barrington Academy evidences the literary craving of our forebears.

When a desire for the loan and exchange of books got to be frequent, Wm. J. Cammeron's drug store in what is now the east half of the Ben Franklin Variety store at 133 Park Avenue became the place to borrow a donated book. That was April 3, 1915. The Barrington Woman's Club was strongly behind this idea and boosted for books till a room on Cook Street over George Wagner's market -- formerly the Hank Abbott Drug Store -- was rented and different women of the Woman's Club took turns on certain days as librarians. Mrs. R.C. Work and Mrs. Gertrude (John) Schwemm were among the Club's committee who kept its needs and promotion ever before the public. Later the library moved to 119 E. Main Street over Ed. Rieke's confectionary store, -- now Marie's Bakery. Olive Dobson took over as librarian and did an excellent job in the work. To further this essential feature of civic welfare, several attempts were made to get permission of the voters to levy a small library tax but did not get it until April of 1924. By a vote of 670 to 285 a tax of one and one eighth mills through the village budget was allowed, and in 1926 a Library Board was elected.

Before the voting of the library tax, a stimulus to better library organization was the initial gift of $1,000.00 left by Mrs. Caroline (George) Ela who died February 28, 1914. Frank Hecht later gave $1,000.00 in memory of his mother.

In 1933 the library was housed, by the gracious permission of the Village Board, in the council chamber of the village hall. The trustees moved into a back room of the new addition.

The Woman's Club deserves credit, more perhaps than our Public offers, for the years of struggle that they put up to keep buying new books, to keep a librarian, to keep a place for the library and try to keep some one responsible for building fires and keeping the place warm and so forth. New books were added as funds could be spared. Many books were donated from Personal libraries. Good reference works and wholesome fiction has been the maintained policy of our library. The circulation, after inventory of 1956, was eleven thousand books.

The space in the village hall was too small for the book stacks alone and but little space was available there for reading and study. So, by a successful vote in November of 1953, the library board was permitted to purchase a site for a new library. A lot on South Hough Street at Monument Avenue 125 by 150 feet was purchased from Frank C. Weyer in the old Hawley pasture. One argument for this site so far from downtown was that with two-thirds of the library cards in the south half of the village this spot would be midway of the Hough Street and the Grove Avenue elementary schools. A library tax of four and a half mills in 1955 and a jubilee parade followed.

A building bond issue for $60,000.00 was authorized on June 5, 1956, by a vote of 279 to 83 and were bought by Scott, Wyandt of Chicago offering a premium of $102.60 and an interest rate of three and a quarter per cent. In September of that same year ground was broken and the building, as planned by architect Ralph Stoetzel, was under construction. Cornerstone laying was on October 14, 1956, and the building was completed in June, 1957. The beautiful building is of Williamsburg style, of one story on Hough and two story on the west with two large picture windows in the spacious base- ment reading rooms. The walls are of waxed elm throughout, with a fine office opposite the main entrance.

On July 2, 1957, the library in the old location in the village hall was closed and all was moved up the street to their new home. On July 8, it was opened to the public. A housewarming was held or Sunday, July 21, with a flag presentation by the V.F.W. It was a credit to the board and all the interested boosters who made the dream a reality. A beautiful terrace garden in memory of one of its former boosters, Mrs. Nellie Hammond, was laid at the north end of the building.

The Telephone

Another event in 1898, a great year in our advancement, was the coming of the telephone to Barrington on a village franchise. The Chicago Telephone Company began its service here with eight subscribers. The first switchboard was in the Barrington Review office, a small frame building on North Cook Street where the Northern Light is now. In August of that same year, 1898, it was moved to the three story Commercial Hotel on East Main Street where the Strand Dress plant is now. Mr. Linus R. Lines was the proprietor, and operator of the telephone. Miles T. Lamey's Review office was phone No. 1 and Attorney Clark McIntosh was phone No. 2. Phones were on the wall and were a brown wooden case with a stationary mouth piece. To call the operator for a connection to another phone, one had to grind the bell crank on the right side of the phone box.

In 1903 when Arthur C. Schroeder of Manitowoc was local manager, the switchboard was moved into premises of their sole use in the small shack which was originally Billy Hamilton's carpenter shop at the northwest corner of East Main and Ela Streets. It was close up to the sidewalks in the yard where the Cities Service Gas Station is now. Mr. George Wilburn, now retired from managerial service, was operator there. That building was moved in 1940 to 108 Grant Street.

As the growing service demanded more room, they moved to their brick building across Ela Street to the northeast corner of the same intersection. That building soon had to be enlarged for rnore switchboards.

In 1923 the Chicago Telephone Company became the Illinois Bell Telephone Co.

In 1940 the Barrington switchboard had 1550 phones, an increase of one hundred in two years. In 1953 we had 3712 phones here. In that building they had switchboard positions for thirty-eight operators, and at the height of their service from that building they had one hundred fifteen operators listed at one time.

Their business office was established at 213 Park Avenue in August, 1946, when more space away from the exchange building was necessary. Then it was moved to 113 East Main Street.

In 1956 Manager Robert L. Pearson announced that Barrington was to have a large building erected at 430 East Main Street to house a new system of dial telephoning and automatic connections much faster than waiting for operators; that Barrington's exchange would be DUnkirk, calling DU 1- plus four more figures. Ground was broken by the officials in January of 1957. A brick building set on deep caissons was completed and the change-over was made on Sunday, April 20, 1958. An open house followed, which revealed to the layman the marvels of telephony. The Pacific coast was called and answered in a matter of seconds without any operator. Still there were twenty-four positions on the switchboard for some calls. On Tuesday, February 19, 1959, for instance, five thousand toll calls went through the Barrington office. The building is so constructed that there is still opportunity for greater expansion.

By April, 1960, all of the eight party lines in the village had been Converted to one and two party lines. By July of that same year all four party lines in the village were changed over.

An admirable record at the switchboard was that of Miss Frances Bauman, who retired after 32 years of service, 28 years of that time in the Barrington exchange and 18 years as chief operator.

Public Utilities


Until 1898, almost every home had its own well and hand pump close by the side door. Wells were usually hand dug, about 4 feet in diameter, bricked up or lined with field stone, and varied from twenty odd feet to sixty or more deep around here. Dick Earith and Jay Palmer were the usual well diggers in the 80's and the 90's till Jay Palmer and his son Steve went into the business of driving or drilling and piping deeper wells for those who needed deeper wells and a greater supply than could be gotten from the more shallow wells, which sometimes depended somewhat on surface seepage and rains for water in them. It used to be a belief by some that the use of the "witch stick" could locate a vein of water. A fork of a small branch was cut like a sling shot crotch, and, holding it by the two fork ends out horizontally a little taut, they walked around thus till they observed the handle end of the cut twig pointed abruptly downward. Well, they did it, and they found water at various depths.

Several big fires in the village caused our people to see the need of better and greater water supplies. There were three public wells down town: one on the north side of East Main Street west of the C. & N.W. Ry. crossing, which was dug there in front of Sandman's elevator; one at the southeast corner of Cook on Station Street; and one across the street from the National Bank about sixty-eight feet north of the Bank Tavern. The one on Station at Cook had water in it as long as there was water in M.B. McIntosh's frog pond at the opposite corner of the block at Grove and Lake. The one at Park and Cook was in a wash from Grove Avenue hill and was used the most. Water troughs for stock and teams were at all three wells. After the water works came, the flag pole and the band stand were moved from the Cook-Park well which was filled up and lost in excavating. When Park Avenue was widened at that point and they were sinking a sewer catch basin, the old well was discovered much to the mystery of the younger generation. From that well was pumped water in testing several hand fire pumps -- as related in the chapter on The Fire Department.

Then followed the agitation, to a conviction, that Barrington must have a deep well, and big pumps to fill a stand pipe reservoir and water mains laid out by an engineer. Old ordinance No. 65 passed by the village board December 22, 1897, signed by Lyman A. Powers as a clerk and by Henry Boehmer as president, directed Barrington should proceed in creating a water works system. A contract was let to Charles H. Patten of Palatine for the complete works in 1898. A well was bored three hundred feet deep under where the landing in the village hall now is on Hough Street. Water mains ten inches and smaller were laid in the streets from the well to the pumps, from the pumps to the big round roofed reservoir in the back yard and from the reservoir to an open standpipe on the hill south of town. The pumps were steam operated and engineered by William Hager on the entire first floor of the village hall. The standpipe was 18 by 50 feet setting on the ground -- not on legs like some that do not have a natural elevation as we do; and it used to be pumped so full it ran over and flooded down Hough Street till the neighbors phoned to Bill Hager that the stand pipe was full. Then a gauge was installed signalling to the pump room when the float on the water neared the top.

When the water works was completed, a demonstration was given at the flag pole near the old well, near the old depot. With the pumps going and the standpipe full, it gave a pressure, the contractor told us, of sixty pounds to the square inch, and the new fire department shot a stream of water over the top of the flag pole, which was eighty-five feet high.

The bucket brigades and the wet blankets were now to be a thing of the past.

On October 4, 1920, ordinance No. 77 was passed, signed by John C. Cadwallader as clerk and August W. Meyer as president of the village board, fixing the rates charged for water, and requiring that water meters be installed at water users' expense by March 1, 1921. Minimum use was set at $1.50 per quarter of the year. Prior to this time a flat rate was charged for each faucet. Rates charged were:

First 5,000 gallons used, $1.50 per quarter
Excess of 5,000 to 10,000 gallons, 25c per each 1,000 gallons
Excess of 10,000 to 20,000 gallons, 20c for each 1,000 gallons
Excess of 20,000 to 30,000 gallons, 15c for each 1,000 gallons
Over 30,000 gallons to be fixed by ordinance or contract.

Later on, the stub ends of the water mains on the side streets were connected with each other, making U turns, for better service in emergency, which enabled the Chicago Board of Fire Underwriters to give us a cheaper base rate for fire insurance.

In 1929 a second well three hundred feet deep was drilled on Station Street, the old round reservoir was taken out because of seepage, the tramp house was moved away, and a new rectangular reservoir was built on its location on the west line of the village lot. Some complained there was an odor to the water, so an aerator was constructed to eliminate it. Turbine pumps in the Wells lift the water through the aerator to the -reservoir. Centrifugal pumps in the pump house on Station Street pump the water from the reservoir through the city water mains to the standpipes on the hill. In April, 1954, a new standpipe of a half a million gallons capacity was erected. It was fed by a new main laid from Station street midway of the blocks west of Hough Street on easements, south through Lill Street. Continued residential and industrial growth convinced village officials early in the 50's that a third well ought to be dug. In June 1963 a site was purchased on Bryant Avenue in the Northwest section and the preparation of detailed plans was begun.

We have come a long way since the little pact between Wm. Hager and August W. Meyer, the big store owner. Bill lived where the funeral home is on West Main Street, and August lived across the street where the Post office is now. Bill had a drilled well and erected a windmill and tank, and water was piped across the street to August Meyer's house, barn and lawn. Block 8 had a party plant also. In the rear of John C. Plagge's house on Cook Street, the residents of the block drilled a well, erected a tank and a pump which supplied the residents of that block, who were Leroy Powers, Fred Frye, J.C. Plagge, Thos. Freeman, Fred Hawley, Urial Burlingham and E.W. Townsend.

Fire Department

(As written for that Department's fiftieth anniversary)

Barrington had some big fires in the early days, and certain conditions bid fair for a much worse one unless the village had more water and some fire fighting equipment. On the 13th of March in 1890 a big fire burning one man to death, started in a hotel on the west end of the block on North Railroad Street where the Drover Motor Company has been, and swept east through the frame row of hotels, homes and businesses and stopped only by tearing down Emil Schaede's 18 foot building ahead of it after futile attempts of the engine of the midnight train to pull out the William Hill house with a four inch rope.

A few days later the Fred Buck mansion on West Lake Street went up in smoke, and a great shower of burning shingles dropped their fire brands in a strong southeast wind on the home of Dick Earith, saved only by blankets on his roof kept wet by a hand bucket brigade. A fire began in the C.C. Henning's saloon and burned out the rest of the block through Grebe, Stott, Grunau in 1892 or 1893. When the August W. Meyer store big fire began in 1898, it swept the entire block with no fire fighting equipment or water to stop it.

So the village naturally worried about what would happen if a fire began in the two blocks of all frame buildings on the south side of Main Street. It would clean up the row from Hough Street to the bank. There was no whistle; and the church bells, especially the big Zion Church bell, were the only alarm.

Better alarms were the whistle on Gieske's Barrington Steam Laundry, which became available in 1901, and the whistle on the Bowman Dairy Co. plant on Applebee Street in 1904.

There were three village wells, hand dug. One was at the southwest corner of Cook and Station Streets which held water till its frog pond feeder at the northwest corner of Lake and Grove went dry; another was on the north side of East Main just west of the railroad track near what was Sandman's elevator and later the site of Foreman's saloon; the other was near the old flag pole at the northeast corner of Park and Cook. Fire equipment salesmen held public demonstrations down town on a huge kindling pile soaked with kerosene. The mayor shot a gun to call the men with the pump a block away. It was a two handled pump on four wheels like Billy Wilmer's speeder. The well went dry and the fire kept on burning unmolested. A bigger pump was tried later where Triangle Park now is, with the same failure.

A big mass meeting was called to propose water works. We always felt that Dr. Kendall's little speech cinched the undertaking. A contract was let to Charles H. Patten of Palatine and in 1898 we had a well drilled; a standpipe, water mains, hydrants, a reservoir installed; and a new village hall erected. A try-out with the fire hose shot a stream of water over the top of the old wooden 85 foot flag pole and we were told the water pressure was sixty pounds to the square inch -- with both well pumps going (one from the well to the reservoir and the other from the reservoir to the standpipe.)

A Fire Department was organized June 15, 1898, with thirty-seven volunteers listed. Mr. Ed. J. Heise of the Creamery was the organizing President. John Brommelkamp was Fire Marshall, George Stiefenhoefer was Secretary, and Carl Naeher was Treasurer. At the next meeting they adopted a constitution which was approved by the Village Board, but they reduced their membership on the charter (it is understood at the Board's request) to twenty men. Every man was assigned duties, and regular meetings, practices and roll calls were held with faithful attendance required. For some time each man was paid twenty-five cents for attendance at each meeting, and they soon began paying each man $2.00 for labor at a fire. The Secretary was paid $5.00 a year. Oyster suppers and many ball games were put on for fun as well as to meet expenses. Firemen were sent to State Fire Conventions, Henry Schroeder being among the first, who brought home a good report of suggestions and demonstrations at Princeton, Illinois.

At the beginning "there were two hose teams within the company as well as a hook and ladder company, but the hose teams were soon united. This organization joined the State Fire Association in 1900, and that association made frequent requests of the Village Board to pass certain helpful and protective ordinances. It got the Board to pass an ordinance charging outside fire insurance companies a 2 per cent tax on fire insurance premiums in Barrington.

The first fire fighting equipment was a two wheeled hose cart, hand drawn, and was still in usable condition at the time of the Department semi-centennial. Next was a combination hook and ladder truck and hose reel with coats, hats, boots, axes and pike poles, pulled either by team, or ropes reeled out for men to pull. Later came the Ford truck bought in November, 1919.

Then came the handsome Pirsch engine bought July 2, 1926. It added a considerable force, enough to blow one man completely out of the way when he strenuously objected to their turning the hose on a fire. That was as effective, probably, as exercising their prerogative of detaining and arresting anyone hindering work in fire extinction or refusing to aid when called upon by a fire official. In 1948 that Pirsch was still in use and the Village's only engine. The Company kept in the engine house two engines belonging to the Countryside Fire Protective District with proper arrangement for village use.

There was always keen competition for teams of horses to be the first to get to the engine house on Station Street (where the pump house is now), to haul the hook and ladder combination truck to the fire. The first team there got $5.00 for its service.

The first hose cart was kept back of the village hall. In 1900 a fire equipment house was built on Station Street where the new pump house and second well are now. For a time the engine was kept in the Gold Star building at Station and Park Avenue till the village hall was remodeled. The old frame fire house was sold and moved away, the steam pumps taken out of the village hall and two electric Deep Well Turbine pumps put in the new pump house as well as three booster pumps for service from reservoir to standpipe. The abandoned space in the village hall was made over into offices and a fire company house, much to the dismay of the venerable Croquet Club who had used the front yard as a borrowed time club, but were ousted when it became a driveway for the Fire Department.

Something had to be done about a quicker fire alarm than running from door to door ringing door bells and shouting "Fire," or ringing church bells, or relying on the railroad engine blowing a whistle. A two hammered bell was put on the fire house, and the old school bell was put in the gothic belfry on the village hall.

Although this has been a voluntary company from the start, that is, no standing company of men at the station, and men are subject to call only, they have had an enviable record that can not be excelled for promptness of response and speed to a fire (when people are not too excited to give on the phone the correct location where they live). They have lost but very few fires and never a home, with the possible exception of one. Some, like the Mrs. Delilah Jayne home on West Main Street (fire from the basement up through the walls to the roof) were hard fought but conquered. The Plagge Grain Elevator spontaneous combustion in July of 1909 was the only complete loss (other than three old hay barns) because there are no windows or doors accessible to the granary bins of an elevator.

The hardest fought fire we knew of in those days was on the night of February 2, 1907 when the Pomeroy Roller Flour Mill, North Hough and Franklin, caught fire. Flames ran up four stories on the wooden elevator pipes and were coming out of the west wall when discovered by night watchman Ed. Magee. People were covered deep in bed on that cold night, and it seemed like forever to get anyone out or to hear that two-gonged bell. Yet a very few of us got the truck out, more joining on the way or at the fire till it was put out with only a $1,800.00 loss. But, it was fourteen degrees below zero, and the nozzle men, like Wilbur Harnden and Steve Palmer were relieved at the hose because they were so covered with a solid armor of ice it was difficult to direct the hose. Such were the hardships that demanded a still better fire protection.

Some of the other fires were: Lageschulte Brothers elevator in 1900; C. & N.W. Ry. roundhouse twice; Lamey Review building June 5, 1904; Bowman Dairy June 3, 1904; J.F. Gieske Laundry 1906 and 1907; Dan Lamey store, 1908; V. Hawley Drug Store in the Sodt Building, January, 1916; Pecak Building, 1926; Jewel Tea Company; Groff Building, Landwer barn; Public Service Substation; Schwemm's and Nightingale's barns; Locomotive Terminal Improvement Co. at west end of Lake Street; Granger house on South Grove (two pumps for three hours); Plagge Greenhouse (three pumps for six hours); the Ed. Blocks building with Jack Graham's radio business in the Fall of 1952, a complete loss, but complete protection to the adjoining buildings.

The following were organizing members but, as noted, the number was limited by the authorities to twenty on the charter although most of them got in later when the count permitted:

Ed. J. Heise

Sam Landwer

John Westphal

Wilkes Wilmer

Frank Searles

Steve J. Palmer

Hy. S. Meier

Hy. Brasel

Wm. Schnetlage

Wm. Shales

Geo. Schaefer

"Dick" Barker

Aug. F. Miller

John Brasel

Arnold Schauble

Hy. Kirmse

Frank Gieske

Hy. A. Landwer

Chas. Horn

Frank Plagge

Ed. Hackmeister

Fred Meister

Emil Naeher

Chas. Hutchinson

Ed. Blocks

Nich. Stranger

Hy. T. Schroeder

Carl Naeher

Fred Stott

Herman Schwemm

Geo. Elvidge

Vern Grebe

Hy. K. Brockway

Ed. Peters

Chas. Peterson

Geo. Stiefenhoefer


Jno. Brommelkamp

Fire Marshalls

John Brommelkamp

Chas. H. Miller

Frank Plagge

Wilbur Harnden

Wm. Shales

Irvin E. Landwer

Hy. T. Schroeder

Herb. Homuth

John Donlea

Fred Grabenkort

Hy. S. Meier

Victor D. Rieke

Jim McKay

Harold E. Martens

Secretaries were: George F. Stiefenhoefer, Henry S. Meier, Wm. B. Shales, Samuel L. Landwer, Victor D. Rieke, Walter Seaverns, Gotlieb C. Miller, Ed. Meyer, Walter Ahrens, Harold Martens, Kenneth Grebe.

On January 2, 1940, an ordinance was passed by the Village Board that firemen must be between the ages of 21 and 35 to join and must retire at 65, or sooner if physically disqualified.

In 1959, the Department felt the need of a better emergency truck to replace the former one of 1953 which in its faithful use served 103 oxygen calls and 516 fire calls. A popular subscription brought more than enough to pay for the new $6,000.00 truck, including extra equipment. This addition was dedicated July 4, 1959.

This history would be incomplete without mention of the lightning striking the old Zion Church steeple on the morning of March 20, 1916, in a blinding snow storm. The fire company was called out and Fred Grabenkort with an axe in his belt climbed that 115 foot steeple, stood inside of the framework at the top and chopped out the fire. Like all faithful firemen, he was modest of his good work.


Ordinance No. (old) 69 passed October 1898 creating the Fire Department and authorizing the Board to appoint a Fire Marshall was signed by Henry Boehmer as President of the Board and by Miles Lamey as Clerk. It gave strong powers to the Company.

The Fire Department of Barrington was incorporated in July of 1940 with four officers and an executive committee of three. Negotiations with the Countryside Association began in May, 1940, and have continued to date with changes of remuneration, and mutual use of equipment.

This Department belongs to the Illinois Fire Association and sends men to its college of instruction almost every year. It belongs to the Lake County Association.

Water fights were a source of fun for a number of years. Their annual steak fry was another item of social pleasure after hard work. Carnivals with the V.F.W. added to the treasury, which during the war bought war bonds and later grew to an amount ready for new equipment when needed. Red Cross and First Aid work were taken up during the war.


Better lighting at night was wanted. The old lamp posts had served their purpose as a leaning post for some and for the faithful kerosene lamps. Mud crossings and board walks with loose boards and sometimes holes in them -- some walks were up on stilts without railings -- were precarious at night; and business houses too often were burglarized when it was too dark for watchman to see what was going on.

An electric system was voted and a franchise granted on June 16, 1897, to Albert E. Phillbrink, Judson S. Joslyn, Horace E. Shedd and Henry J. Brownell of Elgin trading as the Chicago Engineering Co. The village board at that time was Henry Boehmer, president, and Trustees were John Hatje, John Collen, William Grunau, Luke Willmarth, and William Peters.

Lights were hung across the street at every intersection and a block up longer stretches. The washing of smoky and easily broken lamp chimneys, filling with messy kerosene, trimming dirty wicks and the danger of upsetting, all gave way to electric wiring in the homes. A generator was installed in the new light plant building at the north end of Harrison Street near the "J" Wye about where the Jefferson Oil yard now is.

So in 1898 another big stride was made in the modernizing of our village. In that same year, too, the old wood framed village hall trial sat high up over the calaboose on a stone foundation was sold and moved up Station Street as a residence. Charles H. Patten built the present brick building; the addition to the rear for a boardroom being added in 1933.

The old electric light plant had its weaknesses; and light was shut off at eleven o'clock at night and turned on again in the morning. Later the street lights were left on till midnight. Late home comers after that hour found it necessary for the night watchman to trail along, by request, and see that the fair sex got there safely in the dark.

Early one morning when the lights slowly faded out, a hurried call to the light plant found Emil Naeher lying before the switch board electrocuted. Then Wm. Hager ran the plant for some time, being elected village engineer by the board at a salary of $40.00 a month.

Carbon arc lights were first installed in the business district, but the arc light did not hold steady and were soon considered not the right type on the kind of current in that plant, and were changed to incandescent. Direct current was changed to alternating current. However, five hundred watt lights were installed on tall cement poles in the business area February 5, 1931, and were paid for by special assessment on the business district property.

The electric light system was assigned by the Chicago Engineering Company to Albert L. Robertson and was so recognized September 22, 1909 by ordinance No. 59 signed by Edw. F. Kirby as village clerk and Miles T. Lamey as village board president. Then in the next month, October 6, 1909, Albert Robertson assigned his interest to Edw. B. Lake as the Northern Illinois Lakes Light and Power Co. After that the local system and plant at the end of Harrison Street was hooked up with Crystal Lake, it then connected with Waukegan from whence has come our power for many years.

About this time the systems of Dundee, Algonquin, Crystal Lake, and McHenry were acquired by the same company, who in 1910 assigned these companies to the North Shore Electric Company which was taken over by the Public Service Co. of Northern Illinois in 1911. Our substation in Barrington, which was No. 84, was built in 1910 or 1911. This substation on North Hough Street beyond the L.Y. & E. was established to reduce and distribute the current for local use. During a bad storm in 1921 the lightning arrester in this local substation ignited escaping gas, the explanation was, and the brick building with its equipment was blown up. A well formed pile of brick and rubbish was all that was left. Light service was cut off. Young Mr. McCready, who was on duty, was killed. Wilbur Harnden and Wilkes Wilmer had the other tricks on duty there. By daybreak an enormous transformer was on the ground from Joliet, hauled in on a low slung truck, and electric service was soon restored through that big transformer in a little wooden shanty. There was at that time but little if any circuit hook-up with other towns for such emergencies. Following this catastrophe a mesh work of circuit hook-ups was established over northeastern Illinois to meet such emergencies.

In November, 1947, the 29th, the Public Service Company held open house for a new service station built for construction men and equipment just north of their substation.

Martin H. Schreiber came here in 1925 as local manager and later as district manager, for twenty-eight years, retiring on August 1, 1953 after forty years and two months with the Public Service Company. He then took over the task of President of our village board.


On the 9th of June in 1905 a franchise was granted to the Northwest Gas Light & Coke Co. to enter Barrington from Niles with gas mains. What a blessing to every kitchen and the cooks therein. They assigned it in 1913 to the Public Service Company of Northern Illinois, one of Samuel Insull's companies. The gas and electric service were under one company and on one bill till February 1, 1954, when the State of Illinois required a separation, and the gas part of the Public Service Company of Northern Illinois became The Northern Illinois Gas Company, with office at Aurora, Illinois. Natural gas was turned into our artificial gas on November 13, 1931. Until that time our gas was 535 BTU. In 1932 after the addition of natural gas the BTU was 800. In 1947 it was stepped up to 1000 BTU.

No more was the old wood stove to be a kitchen necessity for cooking. With the advent of the furnace for heating the home, cooking over a hot wood fire in the summer gave way to gasoline cook stoves, and that in turn gave way to the carefree labor saving gas. The days of ashes, soot, blackening the kitchen stove, or the coal base burner and the dust of coal-binfilling was to be delegated to antiquity for those who used gas or oil. Irregular cold and heat -- roast near the fire or freeze in the corner -- were gone. The reservoir at the back of the wood stove for hot water was gone along with the task of the poor boy who had to fill it so frequently, for the gas heating hot water tank took its place. Now, with the coming of comforts of electricity, water pressure and better heat, one could forget the bath in a wash tub and bathe in a warm bath room with a bright electric light, plenty of warm steady heat, and hot or cold soft water. Just set the thermostat at night and get up in the morning in a comfortable house. This generation does not know what it was to get up on a very cold frosty morning and start a fire and freeze till it heated up.


Before Barrington had a sewer system, its only drainage was the creeks and natural slopes toward lower places, the Kilgobbin Creek has its source in the area & around Hillside Avenue between Cook and Dundee Avenue, more especially in what was known in the days before 1950 as Hawley's pasture (Monument to Hillside and Hough to Dundee Avenue). It flowed north down what is now Lill Street to Main Street, and then catered northwest to "Spile Creek" south of the C. & N.W. Ry. beyond the "J" tower.

The southeast part of the village drained into a slough which is now part playground, and part parking lot north of East Russell at the end of Lincoln Avenue. It was drained by "Billie's Ditch" (named for its owner William Collen) into a creek under the railway track near Spring Street, past the northeast corner of the Mrs. Purcell home (southwest corner of Spring and Main), under the old telephone company exchange building (northeast corner of Ela and Main), then through Henry Gieske's yard (northeast corner of Cook and Franklin), across Block O and west on Liberty Street under the "J" track into the "Spile Creek" north of the C. & N.W. Ry., south of the Northside Park.

The "Spile Creek" had its source in McClure's slough which was that low area east and northeast of the Jewel Tea Company plant, and runs west through Jewel Park, north of the Barco plant and southwestward under the E.J. & E. And under the C. & N.W. west of the tower, past the village treatment plant, westward and northwestward into Flint Creek, which was named for Amos Flint who was the first white settler in Cuba Township. From that junction, Flint Creek flows northward on its last stretch into the Fox River. Amos Flint's house was at the junction of Flint Creek and the Fox River and was still remembered after Flint's death by some of the old timers.

But the creeks as sanitary drainage sometimes caused an unhealthy seepage into wells and were poor water for children to play in. Also, every home had an outdoor toilet which could not be disposed of until we had water works to operate indoor toilets. That called for a properly tiled sewer system.

Scarlet fever and other epidemics were common, typhoid fever was a terror and took all too many lives and crippled many more. The only remedy was a complete sewer system. A sand filter was made in 1908 at a point in the "Spile Creek" below the junction with the Kilgobbin Creek at the north end of Hager Street, south of the track. This caught some of the sewage, but during a good rain when the creek was higher and ran faster, the sand filter beds were of little or no avail. But only parts of the village were served by that sand filter.

In 1926 a combined sewer system for sanitary and storm water in one line of drainage was constructed at a cost of $325,000.00, (ordinance No. 88, June 15, 1925). An Imhoff plant with rock filter beds was installed in place of the sand filter, but was declared obsolete when the plant was enlarged in 1935 and 1936. But storm water from hard rains and roof draining into the filter beds at the treatment plant caused an overflow down Flint Creek.

The sludge was polluting the stream west of town through the country estates. The condition was bad and anything but pleasant on a warm or humid day as it flowed through the green lawn yards of those newcomers west of town. Yards which they had tried to beautify and landscape only to find a sewer of untreated discharge was invading their premises. True, they bought their places under those conditions, but the Illinois law says that no natural streams of water shall be polluted.

The complaints of those property owners to the village did not get satisfactory results, so a suit was brought in the upper court and a decision was handed down by Judge Shurtleff on May 21, 1931 that Barrington must abate the nuisance and correct the cause. It is obvious that a dual system was the wrong type.

The sanitary sewer occupied the center of the street in most places, and was covered with a heavy cement pavement. In 1935 and 1936 a separate storm sewer system was installed at an additional cost of $388,000.00, and was in operation July 1, 1936. Where a sewer line was already down in the center of the street it was left there to be the sanitary sewer and a storm drain was layed along the curbs or under sidewalks -- removed and renewed -- and ran down the creek beyond the village and beyond the filter beds at the treatment plant.

The village treatment plant was enlarged to a capacity for 5,000 persons. The affluent was tiled all the way to Flint Creek north of the Northwestern Railway several miles beyond Barrington. Analysis of the discharge is now at a very high rate of purification. A usage charge of $15.00 a year began at that time.

Summit Street, south of Hillside, was given advantage of the sewer system with an extension of the service and was tiled across the Northwestern tracks at Prairie Avenue. In 1956 the area east and north of the Northwest Highway and south of Main Street east to the village limits was provided with sewers installed by the Cassidy Construction Company at a saving of $27,000.00 less than the Special Assessment No. 709. The recommendation of the Judge allowing the rebate was pleasantly received. In 1958 the northwest corner of the village was tiled out southwest across the track to the village treatment plant.

The village of Barrington voted more than two to one in November of 1956 against a movement by the Metropolitan Sanitary District to extend its boundaries over this end of Cook County and included Barrington. They took us in, regardless of that referendum that definitely said "No", and action was begun for disconnection. Arguments for such action were based on the fact that we had a complete drainage system of our own and that lying in the Fox River Valley over a ridge away from the Chicago area drainage, we drain into the Fox River. Then too, the village lays only half in Cook County and the other half in Lake County, which would give only half of the village drainage system to the Cook County system control, and the Lake County half would be holding the bag for the other half, and the septic treatment plant and outlet. On October 17, 1957 it took County Judge Otto Kerner only a few minutes to grant the petition and set the Village of Barrington free from connection or obligation to the Metropolitan Sanitary District.

Mr. Blanke

No account of our sewer system would be complete without mention of the good work of John H.D. Blanke, who is a civil engineer and was, and is, chairman of the committee of sewage and water. At the time of construction, John was everywhere and into everything pertaining to the villages undertaking of a good sewage system. He knew what the village engineers advised and what the blue prints called for. He knew what the contractors should do. He knew from training and common sense what must be done. He was down into many a catch basin being built. At one time, with only a flashlight, he crawled on his hands and knees more than a block and a half through the sewer line on Hough Street from Main Street south checking the inlets joints and so forth. John was fearlessly outspoken in his objection to ideas or propositions at times at board meetings, but his adverse opinions were founded on practical knowledge or an engineer's trained feeling that it was not for the public good, which often created disappointment, not to mention wonderment but at election he always was a winner.

In 1958 a new and bigger machine to rod out the village sewer mains down the tree-lined streets was purchased. Tree roots infested the sewer mains down the streets and clogged the flow of water, or sewers would otherwise back up.

Pavement -- or -- Out of the Mud

When the backfill was in the trenches made by the new sewer system, the streets of the village were in a terrible condition. The old time ditch bordered street of dirt or gravel or both, was dusty in dry weather before the sewer digging. So the residents sprinkled the roads in front of their homes to prevent clouds of flying dirt, till the village oiled the roads. Then, with every street having been dug up so deeply, and there being no bottom or solid bed of gravel, traffic was almost impossible with deep soft holes in so many places.

The only remedy was a solid pavement. Some villages had narrower pavement than others. While the narrower would cost a bit less, they would not permit two cars to pass each other in our long blocks where cars were parked along both sides of the street. Many of us asked for 32-foot width to grant that ability. Some streets were paved 28 feet, some 30 feet and some 32 feet.

Dundee Avenue and Main Street to the Northwest Highway were our first paved streets and were layed by the state in 1922. East Main Street was a part of Route 19 which came through the village from the Highway down East Main, North Railroad and out Cook Street north before the Northwest Highway was farther built and routed around Barrington on the east and north.

The rest of the village was paved in 1927 and 1928 and paid for in twenty year bonds. Barrington is hilly, and there were worse hills and hollows then than now. But pavements were often put below or above grade, or shifted to one side to accommodate natural conditions thus avoiding putting some home in a damaged situation again. Hough Street was taken over in 1928 by the State of Illinois as an arterial highway.

In 1958, Park Avenue and Lake Street were given a coat of blacktop. North Hough Street in 1959 and a block of Franklin from Cook to Hough, after it was widened, were given the same treatment, adding much to driving comfort.

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