Rail history

History

Our Village roots can be traced back to the days when the Des Plaines River area was the meeting point for many Native American tribes of the Northwest.  In 1816, Alexander Robinson and Claude La Framboise helped negotiate the Treaty of St. Louis, establishing the Indian Boundary Line that runs through the part of Illinois that is now Franklin Park and River Grove.

The 1840s and 1850s brought many German farmers immigrating from Europe, fleeing military conscription.  The primary families who farmed this area were the Kirchhoffs, Martens and Schierhorns.  In 1880, the Chicago and Wisconsin railroad was built and in 1890 Lesser Franklin began planning a modern residential and industrial community around the railroad.  1893 welcomed Dr. Harold E. Dodge as Franklin Park’s first doctor.

On August 4, 1892, the Village was incorporated by a vote of 63 in favor and 9 against.  The Village of Franklin Park has indeed changed dramatically since those early days when there were grassy fields, dirt roads and farmland as far as the eye could see.

Today, the population has grown to over 18,000 residents and the Village serves as host for over 1,000 businesses.  Franklin Park’s history began over one hundred years ago with optimism and enthusiasm. As our Village moves forward in its second century, we are driven by the same optimism and enthusiasm that has produced the Village we know today – proud of our past and committed to an even greater future.

Historical Images of Franklin Park

These images are posted courtesy of the Franklin Park Public Library. Visit the Franklin Park Public Library at 10311 Grand Avenue in Franklin Park to access additional local history materials. The local history collection includes oral histories, newspapers, biographical information on early settlers, additional photographs and maps.Visit the Franklin Park Public Library's Local History webpage for more information.

Franklin Park Public Library Historical Photograph Collections

Franklin Park History
Franklin Park Streets
Franklin Park Postcards
Franklin Park Jubilees
Franklin Park Glass Plate Negatives

FP_grand_rose
Grand Avenue looking west from Rose Street
Courtesy of the Franklin Park Public Library

FP_rupps_buffet
Rupp's Buffet located at 9660 Franklin Avenue in the early 1900s
Courtesy of the Franklin Park Public Library

FP_first_paved_streets
Franklin Avenue and Edgington Street were the first paved streets in Franklin Park
Courtesy of the Franklin Park Public Library

FP_franklin_pearl
Franklin Avenue looking west from Pearl Street
Courtesy of the Franklin Park Public Library

FP_hotel
The Franklin Park Hotel, built by Lesser Franklin in the 1890s, on the southwest corner of Rose Street and Minneapolis Street
Courtesy of the Franklin Park Public Library

FP_minneapolis_rose
Rose and Minneapolis Streets with the Franklin Park hotel on the southwest corner
Courtesy of the Franklin Park Public Library

FP_bank
The Franklin Park bank located at 9700 Franklin Avenue, now occupied by Agave Mexican Grill
Courtesy of the Franklin Park Public Library

 
©2017 - Village of Franklin Park  9500 Belmont Avenue, Franklin Park, IL 60131   tel: (847) 671-4800    Terms & ConditionsIPrivacy PolicyISitemap