North Aurora, Illinois

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North Aurora is a far west suburban Chicago village in Kane County, Illinois, United States. The population was 15,848 at the 2009 census, and has 29 police officers and one chief.

In its early history, North Aurora was known as "Schneider's Mill" or "Schneider's Crossing" after John Peter Schneider, a German immigrant who established a mill and dam on the Fox River after moving to the area in 1834. Schneider Elementary School in North Aurora is named after him.

School-age children in North Aurora attend public schools in the West Aurora Public School District 129. North Aurora's own district was absorbed into its neighbor, Aurora, in the early 1960s. Similarly, public spaces and parks are managed by the neighboring, larger Fox Valley Park District. North Aurora does maintain its own fire department, police department(29 sworn personnel including the chief) and public library district.


Fire Department

Before North Aurora was established as a Village in 1905, there was a loosely organized volunteer fire brigade with mostly buckets and a hose cart. If the fire was located within reach of water from the river - well and good - men had a chance to put it out. A hand drawn cart with a hand-operated booster pump was the only available equipment. In 1903, a disastrous fire at the D. R. Sperry factory, located on the island, proved that this equipment was inadequate. When Sperry was given money to persuade him to rebuild his factory in the village, he handed it over to the village trustees with the instructions that it be given to the fire department to help in the purchase of a new booster pump.

In 1908, Village Ordinance #21 created a North Aurora Village Fire Department and a charter was given to that effect. Henry A. Taske was the first Fire Chief with a crew of 22 volunteers. The "Fire Barn" housing the limited equipment was just east of the Schirtz saloon on the island. A few years later, a larger "barn" was built across the street near the millrace. This building also had a room in the basement to be used as a jail. The room would accommodate one prisoner. On top of the building was a loud bell which would be rung to summon the men when a fire occurred. The bell was later replaced by a siren.

In 1938, the Village Mayor, James A. Sanders and the Board of Trustees passed a Resolution commending the "Fire Marshall", John M. Frieders and the members of the Fire Department for their "aggressive" efforts in obtaining funds for the purchase of new equipment to be used by the Fire Department. A new Ford pumper was purchased to replace an old Reo pumper.

In 1955, a new Village Hall was dedicated. The tan brick building, erected on part of the land of the island which had been transferred to the Fox Valley Park District in 1949, contained a room to house the fire department equipment, the police office, and the office of the village clerk. There was also a room for meetings of the village board and the library. A large multi-purpose room for public meetings was housed in the lower level of the building.

On July 7, 1958, the fire department officially became the North Aurora and Countryside Fire Protection District to enable the protection of residents outside of the Village limits. Andrew Pierce was the Chief at the time. In 1963, the district built Station #1 at the corner of State and Monroe Streets, where the building still stands.

On November 1, 1993, the district hired its first full time employee, Fire Chief Steve Miller. On December 1, 1993, the district hired it's first two full-time firefighters, Todd Zies and Steve Kish. Today, the district has 20 sworn full-time firefighters, 43 part-time employees, and two Administrative Assistants.

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