Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Illinois Towns with Scottish Connections

It has been estimated that at least 100 towns in Illinois have either a Scottish connection or name.  Here are a couple:

NAPERVILLE - Naperville was named after Joseph Naper, a pioneer in northern Illinois who was of Scottish descent.  In early histories his name often appears as "Napier" a more common Scottish spelling. Naper and his brothers arrived in Chicago in 1831 and claimed land along the banks of the DuPage Rver, establishing a settlement at what is now Naperville.  He served as a captain in the Black Hawk War.

KENILWORTH -  In 1859 businessman and philanthropist Joseph Sears purchased a tract of land near Lake Michigan with the purpose of building a model community that would combine the best of city and country living.  When the population of the little community reached 300 in 1896 it was incorporated.  The inspiration for the village came from Sir Walter Scott's romantic novel Kenilworth.  The street names, too, were drawn from Scott's fictionalized world.

           Taken from  The Scots of Chicago, Quiet Immigrants and Their New Society by Wayne Rethford and June Skinner Sawyers

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