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Village History

The Village of Hinckley has a rich and proud history. Dating back to the 1830s, prior to becoming settled, Mr. Hollenbeck (who lived near Ottawa, IL) was journeying through this territory. He found a fine grove of trees west of the present Village of Hinckley, and named the grove after the squaws who were tending camp there. Back in Ottawa, word spread of the undeveloped land, and in the spring of 1835, John Seebree built a log house here. The next year saw more families coming to the area and soon a small town was thriving at the west edge of present day Hinckley. The town's name was Squaw Grove. Hinckley was founded in the 1870s by Francis Hinckley, President of the Chicago and Iowa Railroad. The rail line was placed one-half mile east of the Village of Squaw Grove and the town was renamed Hinckley.

Much change and innovation would come to Hinckley in the following decades. Some key dates are: the building of the the Methodist Church in 1853 and the building of the first store and first schoolhouse in 1872. By 1876, Hinckley could boast of 20 businesses. St. Paul's Church was built in 1885, and a volunteer fire brigade was organized in 1886. Unfortunately, a tornado destroyed most of the Village in 1889. In the late 1800s, H. D. Wagner donated land for the Hinckley Memorial Community Building. As Hinckley grows, the look of the village may have changed, but the spirit of good citizenship and pride stays the same. Hinckley has a proud past and the promise of a bright future.

 

For more information about the Village of Hinckley please visit: www.hinckleyil.com

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