Heyworth, Illinois

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Heyworth is a village in McLean County, Illinois, United States. It was founded in 1856. As of the 2003 census, the village population was 2,478. It is part of the BloomingtonNormal Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Contents

Geography

Heyworth is located at 40°18′53″N 88°58′40″W / 40.31472°N 88.97778°W / 40.31472; -88.97778 (40.314718, -88.977896)[1].

According to the United States Census Bureau, the village has a total area of 1.5 square miles (4.0 km²), all of it land. 86-45

History

Heyworth was laid out by Campbell Wakefield on 11 September 1858. [2] Before settlement, the locality now known as Heyworth was covered by a heavy growth of timber and underbrush which was inhabited by the Kickapoo Native Americans, and was supported a great number of deer, wild turkeys, and packs of large gray wolves.

As settlers began to move West, families such as the Rutledges, Funks, Passwaters, Bishops, Nobles, Karrs, Wakefields, and Martins settled in the immediate vicinity of the present Village of Heyworth as early as 1824. Campbell Wakefield was the primary founder of Heyworth. In the course of his achievements, Wakefield became the owner of a vast tract of land including what is now Heyworth. He continually added to his original tract until he obtained about 1,500 acres (6.1 km2) in one plot.

As the Western US population increased and industries began to spring up, railroads were becoming a great advantage. In 1852 and 1853, the Illinois Central Railroad was constructed through the Wakefield land. When the line became operational in 1855, the residents hoped to put a train station in the vicinity. Many property owners vied for the station, but Wakefield immediately donated a large tract of land for the station. Additionally he set aside adjacent land for the foundation of a town, a Presbyterian Church, and a district school.

The first post office was build in the municipality in 1856, when the new station was opened. The station was named "Elmwood", but it was soon discovered that this name was already taken by a locality in Peoria County. The President of the Illinois Central Railroad proposed calling the new station "Heyworth," after the name of an English director of the railroad.

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