Milton Township
From the "1874 Atlas & History of DuPage County, Illinois"
 

  "This town is situated in the geographical center of the county and on the main line of the Chicago and Northwestern railroad.  It would be considered a prairie township, although there are some fine groves of timber within its limits.  The first settlement in this town was made as early as 1831, by H. T. Wilton and Lyman Butterfield.  Mr. Babcock, Thos. Brown, and Jos. Chadwick settled soon after.  The population did not increase very rapidly until about 1836 and 1837, at which latter date Mr. Jesse C. and Warren L. Wheaton settled in the township, and made claims where the present site of Wheaton now stands.  The first election under the township organization law was held at the house of Jesse C. Wheaton, in 1850.    There are two flourishing villages in this township- Wheaton and Danby (now Prospect Park).  Wheaton was platted and recorded by the Wheaton Brothers, on June 20, 1853, and is twenty-five miles west of Chicago.  In 1867 the county-seat of DuPage county was located at Wheaton, the people of the northern portion of DuPage county having erected a court-house at a cost of about $20,000, which, with four acres of land, was deeded to DuPage county, June 20, 1868.
       "But perhaps no event has done as much for the real prosperity of Wheaton as the location of Wheaton College.  This institution was founded, and for six years managed by, the Wesleyan Methodists, under the name "Illinois Institute."  A new charter was obtained, the name changed to "Wheaton College," and other important changes made, which will appear in the following extracts from a paper, at that time adopted by the Trustees:
        'The College is hereafter to be under the patronage and control of Orthodox Congregationalists, with the cooperation of its founders and friends, the Wesleyans.  Several Congregational gentlemen, widely known in the State, have accepted trusteeships, and others still are to be appointed.
       'The intention of the Trustees is, that the instructions and influence of the institution shall bear decidedly against all forms of error and sin.  the testimony of God's Word against slave-holding, secret societies, and their spurious worships, human inventions in church government, war and whatever else shall clearly appear to contravene the kingdom and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, is to be kept good.
       'Done at Wheaton, January 9, 1860.
                                                               A.H. Hiatt, Chairman.
                                                               W. L. Wheaton, Secretary.'
       "Under the firm and yet kind administration of the then appointed President, Rev. J. Blanchard, the College has to this day pressed forward in the course above marked out for it by its founders.  Its fidelity to principle has, in many instances, deprived it of the friendship of the world;  still it has prospered in every respect.  Seventy-three ladies and gentlemen have graduated from its halls, and the number of students pursuing the regular courses is constantly increasing;  the term attendance the present year has been larger than ever before;  the original building has been entirely remodeled, and with its extensive additions is now one of the most imposing structures of its class west of Chicago;  its libraries number over 2,000 volumes, including three complete sets of Encyclopedias;  and its cabinet of specimens, the laboratory and philosophical apparatus offer valuable assistance to the student of the natural and physical sciences.
       "The students, while they enjoy all these privileges and aids for cultivating the intellect, are also placed under moral influences that tend to make them better men and women.  They are required to attend public worship and Bible-class each Sabbath, another Bible recitation during the week, and morning prayers daily.  Gambling, swearing, Sabbath-breaking, attending secret societies, and using strong drinks or tobacco are all prohibited.
       The students themselves have, for many years, carried on a weekly prayer meeting, and for about a year a daily fifteen-minute prayer meeting, in which Christians of all denominations unite their prayers and songs.
       "The Board of Instruction is now made up as follows:  Rev. J. Blanchard, President, Professor of Mental and Moral Philosophy;  Rev. J. B. Walker, Assistant President;
Rev. J. C. Webster, Professor of Rhetoric and Logic;  O.F. Lumry, A.M., Professor of Ancient Languages;  C.A. Blanchard, A.M., Professor of English Language and Literature;  Rev. S. F. Stratton, Professor of Natural Sciences;  H.A. Fisher, A.M., Professor of Mathematics and Natural Philosophy;  F.G. Baker, Professor of Music;  A.H. Hiatt, M⁄D., Professor of Physiology and Hygiene;  B.T. Pettengill, A.B., Principal Preparatory Department;  T.C. Moffatt, A.B., Tutor;  Miss H.A.M. Read, Principal Ladies' Department;  Mrs. S.H. Nutting, Teacher of Drawing;  O.N. Carter, Teacher of Book-keeping;  W.R. Hench, Teacher of Penmanship.
       "The Methodist Episcopal Church of Wheaton was organized, 1853, by Rev. Mr. Vance, with fourteen members.  Dr. O. Wakelee was leader of the first class.  The church was built, 1860, at a cost of about $4,000.  Present membership 125.
       "The First Church of Christ was organized Feb. 2, 1860.  Present membership, 241.  This society now occupy the College chapel as a place of worship.
       "The Baptist Church of Wheaton was organized, 1864, by Rev. A.J. Joslyn, with eighteen members, and erected a house of worship in 1866, at a cost of $4,000.  Have a present membership of 70.
       "The First Wesleyan Methodist Church was organized Feb., 1`843, with fourteen members, and reorganized in 1862 with thirty-four members.  First pastor was Rufus Lumry.  Present membership is 40.  Their house of worship was erected, 1872, by J. Graigh, with eight members, and have a present membership of forty.
       "The Lutheran Church waS organized in 1865, with twenty-two members.  Rev. Bergmann is the present preacher.
       "The Univeralist Church was organized in 1863, with seventy-five members, who erected a house of worship the same year at a cost of $2,500.
       "There is now an appropriation made by the people of Wheaton to erect a fine public school building, which is to be 80 X 90 feet, and two stories above basement, and to cost $20,000.  This will be a beautiful structure, with seating capacity for about 550 pupils.
       "Mr. J. Russell Smith publishes the only newspaper in Wheaton- The Wheaton Illinoisian.  It is a paper of much influence, and has a wide circulation.  Mr. Smith also publishes a paper at Turner, called the Turner Junction News, which is also well received.  The Bible Standard is likewise printed at Wheaton.
       "Layton Collar represents the hay-pressing business of Wheaton, and is doing a large business.
       "The lumber business is extensively carried on by Mr. W. K. Guild, who is one of the old settlers of DuPage county.
       "DANBY, situated twenty-two and a half miles west of Chicago, is also in Milton township, and was platted and recorded as early as May 24, 1855., by L. Q. Newton; but by recent act of the legislature the name has been changed to Prospect Park.  The natural site of the village is beautiful, and building is now being pushed rapidly forward- perhaps more so than at any other time.  There is a flourishing public school here, divided into two departments, with about eighty pupils.
       The Congregational Church was organized in 1864, by Rev. E. N. Lewis, with eighteen members, who erected a church in 1866, at a cost of about $1,500, with a present membership of twenty-eight.  There is also connected with this church a prosperous Sabbath-school.
       "The Methodists of Danby held preaching as early as 1835, the Rev. Colton acting as minister, and now occupy the Congregational Church."

 

 

 

 
 

 
 

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