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VILLAGE OF SOUTH JACKSONVILLE

Longitude – 90.228 W * Latitude – 39.708 N * Area – 2.5 square miles

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A PLAN FOR VILLAGE ORGANIZATION

Excerpt below from June 16, 1911 A Plan for Village Organization

A petition was presented to Judge Brockhouse of the County Court, providing the first steps toward the organization of territory beyond Michigan Avenue on June 16, 1911.  This petition was presented to incorporate the Village of South Jacksonville as a separate organization.  Judge Brockhouse accordingly ordered that an election be held Friday, June 30, 1911, the polling place being Harney’s Store on South West Street.

In 1911, the proposed territory to include in South Jacksonville was just a mile square with a population of 326 inhabitants.  The north line would be Michigan Avenue, the east line a trifle beyond the Chicago and Alton right-of-way, the south line located south of Vandalia Road, and the west boundary about Diamond Street.

The names on the original signed petition were:

J.N. KennedyS.T. GorhamF.W. Sibert
M.A. DevoreThos. RudkinLee Weigand
Wm. HeiferJoseph KilianJohn Kilian
John GodfreyL.H. MadonJoseph Heinl
J.R. MawsonBert E. TaylorW.R. Routt
H.J. RouttE.D. HeinlW.B. McIntire
Wm. YoungS.P. JonesJoseph Walters
Milton KelleyG.H. AlberdingR.W. Palmer
E.E. BeastallGrant GraffW.T. Standish
J.E. YoungJ.T. HarneyW.E. Spencer, Jr.
J.H. ReidJ.S. HackettC.H. Weber
B.G. GraffC.H. HackettWm. Heinl
C.R. Taylor  

One of the residents in the purposed Village during this time, in talking about the petition and the purposed plan, said:

“We propose to organize a village just as our petition indicates and it seems to us entirely right and proper that we should do so.  Under Village organization we would tax the property within the Village for the benefit of the Village.  We already have a stretch of roadway oiled and we would extend this and lay a large amount of concrete walks.  We would make provision for our own lights and for fire protection and in other ways would seek to improve and make attractive the public property of South Jacksonville…  To build up South Jacksonville as a separate Village will not injure Jacksonville, and in fact, will prove of benefit to Jacksonville and at the same time residents in the Village will be getting the benefit of the expenditure of their own money, benefits to which they are justly entitled.”

The election took place and the results of the first election ballot in 1911 for South Jacksonville were: President ~ Herman Weber; Village Clerk ~ Charles Boston; Trustees ~ William Spencer, Jr., O.B. Heinl, J.H. Baxter, E.E. Beastall, James McGinnis and William Hembrough.  Money from taxation would not be available until the early months of 1913, so the actual development of the affairs of South Jacksonville was expected to begin subsequent to the receipt of tax funds.

The first official gathering was held August 10, 1911 at Heinl’s Greenhouse where President Weber outlined policy of the new organization with all trustees present.  Three committees were designed to look into the matter of providing lights, to look after streets and to buy the necessary supply of stationery for the organization.

President Weber’s address was as follows:

Jacksonville, Illinois, August 8, 1911. ~ Gentlemen:  You are well aware of the purpose for which we are gathered here this evening.  I will say that it is by the sentiment of the voters of South Jacksonville.  They have expressed their wishes and desires at the polls that we should represent them in the different offices that we now hold.  Perhaps they thought we were capable to fill these places and perhaps also they believed we would be fair and honest in all the transactions that may come before us and would carry out their wishes and perform our duties without fear or partiality.  It behooves us therefore to work harmoniously during our term of office; to see that we appreciate the voice of the people; and to set all times honorable and upright in whatever we may do and accomplish, so that at the finish of our labors it may be said of us; “These men have done well.”

President Weber also discussed expenditures and that it was important to not enter into debt, to establish a salary for the clerk, to adopt an order of business and to set a regular meeting time and place.  President Weber also recommended the first order of business should include an ordinance that concrete walks be laid of uniform width and color with No. 1 foundation of an established grade.

The Village Board had their first official meeting on August 16, 1911 at the Heinl Greenhouse.  In brief, the members discussed street lights, a Village Seal, needs of the highways and tools required, ordinances and laws required and the framework for an appropriation and tax levy ordinance.  The Village Charter had been received from the Secretary of State.

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