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New Lenox Township


New Lenox Town Hall is located at 1100 South Cedar Road, New Lenox, IL 60451; phone: 815-485-6431.

New Lenox Township as Described in 1878 [1]

In New Lenox Township was embraced the larger portion of what in early times was termed the Hickory Creek Settlement — a neighborhood celebrated for its hospitality, and for more pretty girls, perhaps, than any section of the county, unless we except Homer's famous Yankee Settlement, and with it, Hickory Creek was, in this respect, a foeman worthy of its steel.

The first whites to erect cabins in the Hickory Creek timber, were, probably, two men named, respectively, Joseph Brown and Aaron Friend, but of them very little is known. They were here as early as 1829, and Friend was a kind of Indian trader. He went to Iowa after the Indians retreated. He died there and his wife came back to Illinois and went to live with her daughter, on what was then called Horse Creek. Of Brown still less is known beyond the fact that he died here in the Fall of 1830.

The Rices came in 1830, and included William Rice, Sr., his son William, and their families. They laid claim to the place where William Gougar afterward settled, and where his son John Gougar now lives. They built a log cabin on this place and had broken 5 acres of prairie when John Gougar came on in the Fall of 1830 and bought them out. After selling out he made a claim where the Village of New Lenox now stands.

William Gougar Sr. was a native of Pennsylvania, but moved to Ohio in 1818 and, in 1822 to Indiana, where he resided until his removal to Illinois and to this Township in the Summer of 1831. He settled on the place where his son John Gougar now lives.

  1. The History of Will County Illinois. Wm. Le Baron Jr., & Co., Chicago, 1878.
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