Huntley Time Line from 1838-2001

Huntley History Timeline The first permanent white settlers arrived in the Huntley area about 1838. But many other countries had laid claim to Huntley soil before that date. The homeland of the Native Americans was claimed by various nations through years of wars and exploration.

1492 Spain claimed the Western Hemisphere by virtue of Columbus’ discovery

1497 John Cabot claimed the North American continent for the British

1541 The land was under the Spanish flag after DeSoto discovered the Mississippi River and claimed the land that it drained for Florida

1606 The land was claimed by Virginia, under the British flag, and in 1629 by the Massachusetts Bay Colony through consolidation with the Plymouth Colony of Virginia

1670 France established its claim to Canada and all lands in the Northwest Lakes Region through treaty with the Native Americans

1673 Still under the French flag, Marquette and Joliet explored the Mississippi and Illinois river valleys

1682 Rene-Robert Cavalier de LaSalle reached the mouth of the Mississippi and claimed all lands drained by the Mississippi and its tributaries from the Gulf to New France, calling the country Louisiana

1763 Great Britain re-established its claim by the treaty of Paris, ending the French and Indian War

1778 Illinois was organized as a county of Virginia

1784 Virginia relinquished its claim on Illinois to the United States

1787 The Northwest Territory was organized to include all lands northwest of the Ohio River

1800 The Indiana Territory, including Illinois, was organized by Congressional action. William Henry-Harrison was named governor.

1809 Illinois Territory was established to include the present state of Wisconsin, with Kaskaskia as the territorial capital and Ninian Edwards as Governor

1818 Illinois was admitted as the 21st state with its first capitol at Kaskaskia. The state’s north boundary line was first drawn along the south shore of Lake Michigan. Later, Nathaniel Pope, territorial representative, persuaded Congress to apportion to the new state a part of Lake Michigan and the boundary was drawn farther north.

1820 The state capital was moved to Vandalia, and in 1839 Springfield became the seat of government

1814 The “Illinois Herald,” first newspaper in Illinois, was published by Matthew Duncan at Kaskaskia

1816 Although slavery was forbidden in the Northwest Territory by the Great Ordinance of 1787, slaves were still advertised for sale in Illinois

1832 The Blackhawk War ended all Native American rights to the Old Northwest area

1834 The Pottawatomi vacated their lands in the Northern Illinois area, opening the land to the white settlers

1837 McHenry County government was organized

1838 The first settler, a Mr. Grinell, arrived in the Huntley area

1838 Prescott and Lucy Geer Whittemore arrived in the area and settled west of the future town of Huntley

1838 Guy and Eleanor Cummings arrived in the area with their 10 children. They purchased 200 acres of land and settled along what is today Huntley’s West Main Street

1839 James and Isabelle Mullen purchased property from the U. S. Government in the future town of Huntley

1839 First religious services in the area were held at the Whittemore home. Elder Marvin conducted the first services

1842 The first schoolhouse in the area, a log cabin structure, was opened on the west side of the future town, with Cynthia Thompson as teacher

1846 Thomas Stillwell Huntley, his wife Eliza and their three children arrived in the area from Ellicottville, New York

1849 Grafton Township was organized

1850 The first slate of officers for Grafton Township was elected, with Thomas Huntley elected first township supervisor. It was the only elective office he ever held

1850 First four landowners of what would become the village of Huntley were Thomas S. Huntley, John Donahue, Isabelle Mullens and Alexander Wilson

1851 The town of Huntley Station, with a train depot, general store and town square, was laid out by Thomas Huntley on the 80 acres he had purchased near the proposed train line

1851 The Chicago and Galena Railroad came through to Huntley in September for the first time

1851 The earliest Huntley business district along Railroad Street included a livery stable owned by Cole M. Smith and George Oakley, a tailor Michael Kelley, and H. B. Brown who owned a hotel

1851 Alexander Wilson sold his 160 acres of Section 28 to S. T. Thompson

1851 Huntley’s first post office was established with Stewart Cummings as the first postmaster

1852 The First Congregational Church of Huntley was organized with services held in a former Baptist Church

1852 James Fisher built the first house on a one-acre lot in Section 33, the southern section of the village

1852 Thomas Huntley donated land for the town cemetery south of town

1852 Thomas and Eliza Huntley’s youngest son, William, died in December at age 14

1856 Thomas Stillwell Huntley built his Federal style home at the corner of Woodstock and Third streets

1859 The Huntley Brass Band was organized and performed at the campaign of Lincoln and Hamlin in Chicago

1860 A white frame school building was built on Main Street. A second story was added the following year

1861 H. B. Williams owned a general store on the town square where Liugi’s Pizza sits today

1864 The First Congregational Church was built and opened on Main and Church streets on land donated by Thomas S. Huntley

1866 The first documented milk factory opened in the Huntley area. The factory was owned by A. W. Nash, near the corner of the present day Conley and Haligus roads

1870 A group of the faithful met to organize a Catholic Church in Huntley

1871 J. G. Templeton owned a hardware store on the south side of Main Street along the town square

1871 Trinity Lutheran Church was organized

1872 The town of Huntley was incorporated as a village government. John Cummings was named the first village president

1873 Eliza Huntley, wife of the town founder, died

1873 The first St. Mary Catholic Church was built south of town, near the town cemetery, on land donated by Thomas S. Huntley.

1875 The white frame school building was moved around the corner to Church Street to make room for a new school building

1875 A four-room brick two-story school building was erected on Main Street

1876 69-year-old Thomas S. Huntley married 34-year-old Emma Brinkerhoff

1876 D. E. Wood, who had owned several creameries in the area, opened the first milk and cheese processing plant along the railroad tracks in town. John G. Weltzien joined him later as a partner

1878 Thomas Stillwell Huntley Jr. was born

1878 George Sheler built the building at the northwest corner of Woodstock and Main Streets for his new hotel. He sold it to Cummings and Haight two years later 1879 H. B Williams’ store on the square was moved to make way for the building of Hawley’s General Store, where Luigi’s Pizza operates today

1880 The Huntley Library and Literary Association was formed, charging annual dues of $1

1880 A young Theodore Roosevelt comes to Huntley with his brother to hunt birds at the Wilcox farm

1881 Devine and Skeels general store opened in the site of a former hotel on the town square, at the northwest corner of Woodstock and Main streets

1882 Emma Huntley, Thomas Huntley’s second wife, died

1883 Cornell brothers opened their milk factory near the railroad tracks and began processing and shipping milk to Chicago

1894 Town founder Thomas Stillwell Huntley died at the age of 87

1894 Schmalz and McKee general store opened on the town square

1897 Village ordinance granted the Chicago Telephone Company the right to erect and maintain its poles and cables in Huntley

1905 The Elgin-Belvidere streetcar begins operation with a station and stop in Huntley

1907 Cornell Milk Factory along the railroad tracks burned to the ground on May 7

1908 Borden’s milk factory opened its Huntley location on Vine Street

1909 An addition to the brick Huntley School on Main Street was built

1914 George Dolby opened a garage at the corner of Woodstock and Coral streets

1916 The Pabst Building was built at the southwest corner of Church and Main streets

1920 Huntley American Legion Post 673 was formed

1920 The Huntley town school consolidated with the nine rural one-room schools to become McHenry County’s first consolidated school district

1922 The American Legion Auxiliary No. 673 was organized

1924 New Huntley High School opened on Main Street east of the grade school

1930 The Elgin-Belvidere streetcar ceased operation

1931 A new St. Mary Catholic Church was built on Woodstock Street

1933 Huntley Brewing Company opened and operated until

1939 in the building along South Church Street

1939 William Fencil Gasket Company opened in the former brewery building

1939 Dial telephones came to Huntley. Previously, an operator located along East Main Street connected phoning parties

1939 New village hall opens on Coral Street on the town square

1942 William M. Fencil Company built and operated a fuze plant on a farm south of town near Martin Drive at the railroad tracks until 1945, producing detonator caps for weapons used in World War II

1946 Dean Foods opened its Huntley facility

1951 The Village of Huntley celebrated 100 years since its founding with a parade and other activities

1955 New elementary school opened at Lincoln and Mill streets

1955 Huntley Dairy Mart opened

1957 Huntley’s new post office on Woodstock Street was dedicated

1960 Dennis (Scoop) O’Brien began The Huntley Farmside newspaper

1965 Huntley Park District founded

1972 The 26-acre Deicke Park was officially named and dedicated

1989 Huntley Area Public Library district was formed by referendum

1994 Huntley Outlet Mall opened south of town along Freeman Road

1998 Groundbreaking held for Del Webb’s Sun City over-55 community

1999 The newly built Huntley Area Public Library opened on Ruth Road

1999 Groundbreaking was held for the new St. Mary Catholic Church on Dundee Road. The church opened in 2001

1999 First residents began moving in to the Del Webb Sun City residential development

2001 The Village of Huntley celebrated its 150 anniversary in August with nightly programs in the town square, a cemetery walk, parade and other activities