History of Gerlaw, Illinois

History / Thursday, April 30th, 2015


From: The Past and Present of Warren County, Illinois, containing a history of the county–its cities, towns &c., a biographical directory of its citizens, war record of its volunteers in the late rebellion, portraits of early settlers and prominent men, general and local statistics, map of Warren County, history of Illinois, Constitution of the United States. Chicago. H. F. Kett & Co. 1877.

This village has a pleasant location. It was laid out as a town site May 2, 1871, on land owned by R. W. Gerlaw, after whom it bears its name. It is situated in the N. W. quarter of Section 34, Spring Grove township, and is on the Rockford, Rock Island R. R. six miles north from Monmouth.

A.A. Elder opened the first store in Sept., 1871. James Webster sometime after, built a large store, with a fine hall in second story. A brisk trade has been carried on here, considering its nearness to the county seat. The books of the R. R. Co. show that the shipment of stock has reached more than 200 cars in a single year. Very little grain is shipped from this point, as all is needed by feeders of stock.

The christian church was organized in 1858, by Rev. L. S. Wallace, and a house of worship was built about two miles north east from the town at a cost of $950. This building was moed to the town site in 1874, and was thoroughly repaired. Among the first members were J. T. Gilmore and wife, R. W. Lair and wife, B. F. Gardner and wife and others. The present membership is about forty. No pastor.

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