Cities, Towns & Townships

History of Grundy County

Populations, if available, (as per 1895 US Atlas) appear below next to towns in existence in 1895. Links are provided to histories of the town if available. Additional links are provided at bottom of page to homepages of the specific town if available.

PO – Post Office; PV – Post Village; RR – Railroad; EO – Express Office

Aux Sable1,3

Bookwalter Woods (pop. 1998: 400), a mobile home park on Carbon Hill Road near Gardner.

Booth (Booths)2,3 (RR, EO)

Braceville1,2,3,4 (pop. 1895: 2,150; PO, RR, EO)

Carbon Hill1,3

Centerville (historical)1,2 (pop 1895: 673; RR)

Central City1,3

Chickering2 (RR)

Coal Branch Junction2 (RR)

Coal City1,2,3 (pop 1895: 1,672; PO, RR, EO), incorporated in 1881

Coster Station2 (RR)

Coyne1,3 (RR, EO)

Del Abby (Dell Abbey)2,3 (RR)

Diamond1,2,3 (pop 1895: 375; PO)

Dresden (historical)5, named by Salmon Rutherford, first settler of Aux Sable Township. [Dresden, p.v., Grundy со Ill., 153 N N E Springfield, 753 W. Situated at the junction of Kankakee and Des Plaines rivers on the line of the canal. It has a a store and a number of dwellings.5]

Divine1,2,3 (RR)

East Brooklyn1,3


Gardner1,2,3,4,5 (pop 1895: 1,094; RR, PO, EO), incorporated 1867 named in honor of Henry A. Gardner


Grundyville – see Morris


Highland Town4

Kinsman1,2,3 (pop 1895: 129; RR, PO, EO)


Lawton – see South Wilmington

Mazon1,2,3,4 (pop 1895: 375; PO, RR, EO) also known as Old Mazon and Mazonville, incorporated 1876

Mazon Bridge2 (RR)

Mazonia1,2,3 (RR)

Mazonville – see Mazon

Minooka1,2 (pop 1895: 360; PO, RR, EO), incorporated 1869, also called Summit by railroad workers; an early deeds show Anoka

Morris (county seat)1,2,3,4 (pop 1895: 3,653; PO, RR, EO) also known as Grundyville

Nettle Creek1,2,3 (PO)

Old Mazon – see Mazon


Sand Ridge1,2,3 (RR)


South Wilmington1,3, incorporated 1899, previously named Lawton


Verona1,2,3 (pop 1895: 212; PO, RR, EO), platted 1877 [The New Town – Grundy county is happy in the possession of a new town located in Sec. 26 of the town of Vienna, on the line of the new railroad running through the county. The honor of naming the new town fell in the lot of Mr. Geo. P. Smith, who in honor of the place of his birth, Verona, New York, has named this place Verona. Side tracks are completed and the work of building a depot is rapidly being pushed forward. A post office will be located here, and for the position of P. M., we understand our former townsman, C. M. Goold, and a gentleman from Dwight, H. K. Avery, are making a hot contest. Our preferences are, of course, for Cassius. No plat of the town is yet upon record but probably will be shortly. Of course Verona, New York, is expected to do the thing that is handsome by its namesake and a four story school house, opera house or mammoth hotel will be acceptable. Morris Herald, Feb 4, 1876]

Wauponsee1,2,3 (pop 1895: 70; PO)

Wood Spur3


Aux Sable Township3, Salmon Rutherford was the first settler in May 1833 and established Dresden. – He was followed by Henry Cryder, Zachariah Walley, and W.H. Tabler, all from Ohio; John Beard, and James McKeen.

Braceville Township3, Dr. L.S. Robbins secured a claim in 1833. – John Cragg located here in 1834-35 and built the first two-story cabin called – The Palace – . B.R. Doud and Robert Houston were also early settlers locating here in the late 1840s.

Erienna Township3, Isaac Hoge of VA, was the earliest settler who bought land. – It is thought that Columbus Pinney was the first actual resident who opened an inn known as – Castle Danger – . – Other early settlers were: – Orville Cone, Peter Griggs, Abraham Holderman and Charles Moody.

Felix Township3, Abraham Holderman was the first landowner. – Peter Lampsett, a Canadian trapper, was the first to discover coal in Grundy County. – Other early settlers were: – Abram and William White, John Beard, and James McKeen.

Garfield Township3, established in 1902 from sections of Greenfield.

Goodfarm Township3, James McKeen was the first settler in 1841. Later arrivals were: J.M. Clover, Elijah Saltmarsh, E.B. Stevens, L. Nathan, Elijah Lewis, David Gleason, E.F. Bruster. The German arrivals were: – Leonard Fisher, John L. Meier, Hoffmans, Pfeifers, and Burkhardts, all arriving from the same area of Bavaria.

Goose Lake Township3, established in 1897 from sections of Felix Township.

Greenfield Township3, Thomas M. Green was a large landowner when Greenfield Township was established and was named after him. – In the late 1840s, Dr. James Miller, Nelson LaForce, and Robert Glass settled in Greenfield Township.

Highland Township3, James Martin of IN was the first settler. – James Funk, William Pierce, Alvin and Cushman Small arrived in the early 1850s.

Maine Township3,5, established in 1898 from sections of Braceville Township. John Cragg was an early settler. He built the old Cragg Cabin in 1835 where it stood for one hundred years.

Mazon Township3, A.K. Owen, of NY, was the first settler in 1833. – J.C. Murray arrived a few years later.

Morris Township3, established in 1849.

Nettle Creek Township3, William Hoge, from VA, was the first settler in 1829, staked a claim then returned to VA until 1831 when he returned and built a cabin. In 1833, Samuel Hoge followed his brother here. The first white child born in Grundy County was James Hoge, son of Wm. and Rachel Hoge. The first school of Grundy County was built here; the first teacher was Maria Southworth. – Other early families were: – Grays, Brouses, Dixes, Thomas Loughead.

Norman Township3,5, David Bunch was the first settler in ca 1834. Datus Kent was also an early settler only remaining a short time. – Other early settlers: – Henry Norman (later moved to Morris), Thomas Norman (first supervisor), E.B. James.

Saratoga Township3, Joshua and Phillip Collins and Alexander Peacock, of NY, arrived ca 1844. – Other early settlers were: – Carpenter Conklin, Elias Bartlett, Daniel Johnson, Gersham Hunt, all of NY.

Vienna Township3, Edwin Shaw and Sheldon Bartholomew were the first settlers in 1833. – Other early settlers were: – Grove family, Jonah C. Newport, Charles Paver, John Dewey. Others who arrived later were: John B. Moore, Henry Hyslop, Patrick Hanley, Wilks, Curtis, Antis, and Justin Renne.

Wauponsee Township3, named in honor of Pottawatomie war chief, Wauponsie. – William Marquis, was the first white man to locate in Grundy County. – He built a cabin in 1828. – Other early settlers were: Jacob and Perry Claypool, William Robb, George W. Armstrong. The second Grundy County Poor Farm was located in the SW corner of Section 33.


  1. USGS Geographic Names Information Systems
  2. US 1895 Atlas
  3. Illinois Atlas & Gazetteer 1991
  4. 1870 Post Offices in Grundy County IL, Post Office Directory, List of Post Offices in United States, Government Printing Office, 1870, Revised & Corrected by the Post Office Department, to September 1, 1870.
  5. A Complete Descriptive and Statistical Gazetteer of the United States of America, by Daniel Haskel, AM and J Calvin Smith; New York: Sherman & Smith, 1843.

Links to City Homepages:

1 Comment

  1. Raymond L. Serena

    Raymond L.Serena, first appointed and served as a member of the Village Board for two a (2) year term and then ran for Mayor of the Village Board and was elected Mayor in 1972 and served the following twenty (20) years as the Mayor of the Village of Gardner, IL.


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