History of Pingree Grove
The Village has enjoyed a rich history since Andrew and Daniel Pingree arrived in 1838. That year the village acquired its name “Pingree Grove.” In 1838, the Deerfield Post Office opened two miles west of Pingree Grove. As Pingree Grove began to grow, the Pingree Grove Post Office was established in 1848. In 1882, Pingree Grove was laid out and platted by Daniel and Hannah Pingree (wife of Andrew Pingree).
A Letter from Daniel Pingree to Samuel Rowell
In 1840, Daniel Pingree drafted a letter to Samuel Rowell of Kentucky. Amazingly, at that time, 160 acres of farm land cost only $200. That letter contains several great insights into the rich, historical background of our Village. As Daniel Pingree wrote, “I also rejoice to hear that you and your Relatives think of coming to Illinois, for in my opinion you could not find a better County in all the world for farming…I will in the first place attempt to describe the Land. There are 3 kinds of Prairie, high rolling, medium, and wet. …The Timbered land is generally Oak-Barrens, called by some Oak Openings. It may be divided into 2 classes; High rolling, and Medium…By taking a farm in the openings a person will generally have timber enough to fence his farm and to build etc., and have enough left for the use of the farm besides…I think that you and your folks would be highly pleased with the Country in all respect.”
- Courtesy of the Rutland Township Historical Society
Becoming a Village
On December 12, 1906 a petition was filed to incorporate the Village of Pingree Grove. An election was held on December 29, 1906. When the votes were counted they were in favor of Pingree Grove becoming an official Village. On February 14, 1907, Frank G. Plain, a Kane County Judge, signed the document making the Village of Pingree Grove official. By 1908, the Village had a population of 600.
The Pingree’s bought land from the Federal Government in 1838. Andrew Jr., Israel Straw and Daniel Pingree made the journey “West” in the spring of 1838. Each of the brothers bought land for the purpose of farming. They arrived to be met by “a wolf howling wilderness”, to quote Dr. Daniel Pingree. In October of 1838 the rest of the family, father Andrew Pingree Sr., his wife, the girls, and younger son came west to Illinois.
Andrew Pingree Jr.
Andrew Pingree Jr. is probably the best known of the family. Reverend Pingree was a Universalist minister who in 1846 preached and taught school in St. Charles, IL. He was also a surveyor who surveyed a good portion of Kane County and helped plat the town of Gilberts. Mr. Pingree was also a member of the County Board of Supervisors, a Probate Court Commissioner, and the Postmaster of Pingree Grove. He and his wife Hannah adopted Emma Gilberts Pingree.
Dr. Daniel Pingree
Dr. Daniel Pingree began his study of medicine in 1846 at the Indiana Medical College and graduated in 1849. He practiced medicine in Memphis, Tennessee. for one year and then went to California, settling in Placerville for one year. It seems the Dr. Daniel went to “see the elephant” in his own way. 1849 was the beginning of the California Gold Rush. Not being content he returned to Illinois and in 1852 he, his brother William with wife, and sister Betsy with husband made the trip across the continent to California. They drove a herd of horses and cattle to the town of La Grange in Stanislaus County, California. In 1859 Dr. Daniel, Betsy and her daughter returned to Pingree Grove. Dr. Daniel married Jane Havenhill in 1859. They had three children.
Today, none of the Pingree’s live in the village that bears their name. They have left a heritage of hard work and service to God and the community. Pingree Grove has successfully blended its heritage and quality of life with new residential neighborhoods, which make Pingree Grove "A Place to Grow."