Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Lost Towns of Illinois - The Village of Forksville, Illinois.

Originally named the Forks before any houses were built. Sometime later it was officially named Forksville for its location at the fork of the McHenry-Chicago and Little Fort (Waukegan) roads, in Lake County, Illinois. At the beginning of the Village's settlement, there were about 150 people living there.
Huson & Booth owned the only general store in Forksville. F. Gale owned the hotel which had a handful of rooms. There were three lime kilns that burn over 3,000 bushels a year. The village had two boot and shoe makers that were owned by J. M. Delaree and David Lewis. Forksville had one cooper shop which was also owned by D. Lewis, and one blacksmith shop. Dr. Malindy was the physician and S. S. Hamilton, Esq, was an attorney. Considerable winter wheat was raised in the village.

The Forksville post office was established on March 24, 1848 with David Lewis being appointed the first postmaster. Forksville was surveyed and laid out October 12, 1849. 

David Lewis served as postmaster until May 12, 1851. The post office was renamed to Volo on November 27, 1868 (possibly at the suggestion of Greek immigrants who named it for the town of Volo (Volos) in eastern Greece. There were a total of thirteen postmaster appointments until the post office was discontinued on June 14, 1904, and the mail was ordered to be sent to Round Lake.

The June 7, 1851, Gazette announced that the road was planked to Hainesville, and that it was planned to go on six miles further to Forksville. Seven hundred thousand feet of planks were on hand for the extension.

Before 1868 the Forksville log school-house gave way to a frame one which was in use until about 1915.

Compiled by Dr. Neil Gale, Ph.D. 


  1. Neil Gale, are you related to the Frank Gale family that was one of the first families to settle Forksville? If so, Frank Gale built a hotel in 1851. Would you have any history of this? Thank you. L. Russell Volo IL

  2. No mention of the Regners, or of Joseph Duncan, Perlmutters, or the Grosoffs???

    1. You just mentioned them! Instead of complaining, do something. If you write up what you know, I'll add it to the article after I verify the information.


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