Sunday, October 24, 2021


Marker Details

Historical Marker:

Elkhart, Illinois

Image Courtesy of Cindy Reinhardt
The marker is located approximately 1/4 of a mile from I-55 on the south side of Kennedy Road.
Dedication Date:
Dedication By:
Division of Highways and The Illinois State Historical Society

Marker Description:
Elkhart City in Logan County is typical of the many Illinois villages whose growth was spurred by the arrival of the railroad. Founded by John Shockey in 1855, two years after the coming of the Alton and Sangamon Railroad, now the Gulf Mobile and Ohio, Elkhart was for many years one of the largest shipping points on this line.

Southeast of the site, on Elkhart Hill, is the mansion 'Oglehurst,' home and burial place of Richard J. Oglesby (1824-1899), three times elected Governor of Illinois (1864, 1872, 1884). Ten days following his second inauguration he was elected United States Senator by the Illinois Legislature and served in that capacity until 1879. Governor Oglesby moved to Elkhart in 1890, following his retirement from public life.

Another prominent Elkhart resident was John Dean Gillett (1819-1883), one of the cattle kings of the prairies. A New Englander by birth, he came to Logan County in 1838. Through his skill in the raising and feeding of cattle, his name became a byword for superior quality beef in both this country and in England. At the time of his death, Gillett's land holdings totaled more than 16,000 acres.

Captain Adam H. Bogardus (1833-1913), wildfowl market hunter, conservationist and champion wingshot, made his home for many years in Elkhart. In 1878, he defeated Aubrey Coventry, English champion wingshot, 79 to 78. Returning to the United States, Bogardus toured with William 'Buffalo Bill' Cody's 'The Wild West.'

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