History of Greenwood, Il.
From: The History of McHenry County, Illinois
Published by: Munsell Publishing Company, 1922
BOUNDARIES - TOPOGRAPHY - EARLY SETTLERS - CEMETERIES - MILLS - BUTTEE AND CHEESE FACTORIES - VILLAGE OF GREENWOOD - EARLY INTERESTS - POST OFFICES - HARVEST PICNIC - POPULATION - TOWNSHIP OFFICIALS.
Greenwood Township is bounded on the north by Hebron Township; on the east by MeHenry Township; on the south by Dorr Township; and on the west by Hartland Township. It comprises all of congressional township 45, range 7. It was named by C. M. Goodsall, and this name was confirmed by township trustee, J. N. Barber.
This township is gently rolling land, the soil is extremely fertile and well cultivated, and the farms are exceedingly valuable. At at early day, the valley of Nippersink Creek was heavily timbered but this growth has long since largely disappeared at the hands of the settlers who have cut it down for fuel and fencing. The main stream of the township is the Nippersink Creek which has several branches.
Probably Henry Weston was the first white man to settle permanently in what is now Greenwood Township. He came
in 1833, Queen Ann Prairie was named in honor of his wife, who was the first white woman in the township, and she
was the first person to die in this township. Soon after her death, Mr. Weston was married (second) to a Miss Watson,
and this was the first marriage in the township, although the first recorded marriage is that between Charles Frame
and Mary Dufield on February 1, 1838, the ceremony being performed by Rev. Joel Wheeler.
About one-half mile south of the village of Greenwood lies Greenwood cemetery. It is the oldest burying place in Greenwood Township. Here repose many of the pioneers of the township.
Another cemetery was early laid out near the Methodist Church in southern part of the township.
In 1841, Lake & Scofield built a saw-mill on section 11, it being run by the waters of the Nippersink Creek.
For more than a quarter of a century this mill was active, or until late in the seventies, when it was torn down
and today no trace of a milisite can be seen.
BUTTER AND CHEESE FACTORIES
It is of no little interest in these days of high-priced butter and cheese, almost prohibitive on account of prices, to read of the many early creamery and butter and cheese stations and factories in this county, including the plant of Abbott & Thompson, who built the first cheese factory in the township in 1848, and its capacity was more than 100,000 pounds of cheese annually. The second cheese factory in the township was built in 1870, by Job Toles, in the village of Greenwood. These are all obsolete industries, for today all of the surplus milk is bottled and shipped to Chicago and other great cities for direct consumption, while other sections of the United States manufacture the butter and cheese which McHenry County farmers used to make in such quantities.
VILLAGE OF GREENWOOD
Greenwood is an inland village which was surveyed in 1842, and platted into lots by Job Toles. He made an addition
to the place in 1845. It is finely situated on the south branch of Nippersink Creek on section 11. The first residences
here were erected by Lake & Scofleld. The first store was started by C. M. Goodsell, who carried a very large
stock for so early a time. Burr & Co. started a wagon shop about as soon as the place was established.
In 1854-55, Weller & Hamilton planted several acres of apple trees, and Greenwood had a nursery which was
continued for a number of years, but Hamilton finally sold and moved to Ridgefield, while Weller closed out the
business at Greenwood. Later Garrison Bros. conducted a business in furnishing fruit amid ornamental trees, garden
seeds and flowers. The first orchard in the township was set by Andrew Murphy, on Queen Ann Prairie, in 1842, the
trees coming from Will County, this state.
During the summer of 1877 the people of Queen Ann Prairie and the surrounding neighborhood inaugurated an annual outing which became for many years very interesting and attractive. It was known as the "Harvest Picnic." The first one occurred August 23, 1877, in the fine grove owned by Michael Senger. A big dinner and excellent literary program was enjoyed by a large gathering. It seems too bad that this custom was not kept up perpetually.
The census reports show that this township had in 1890 a population of 899; in 1910, 908; and in 1920, 858.
The following are the present officials of the village of Greenwood: president, L. W. Thompson; clerk, M. C. Doolittle; treasurer, L. W. Thompson; magistrate, J. N. Barber.
The following are the township officials of Greenwood Township: supervisor, L. W. Thompson; assessor, M. Dassow; clerk, N. C. Doolittle; highway commissioner, O. H. Aavang; justice of the peace, John N. Barber; constable, Oscar Anderson.