Go north of Chicago, Illinois, close to the shores of Lake Michigan and in Lake County is the town of Millburn. There the Historic Milburn Community Association has developed a collection of databases relating to numerous aspects of the people, occupations, land, churches and homes of Millburn. Their Online Historical Archives is filled with all types of interesting material. True, you may not have any ancestors from or around Millburn, but if you did have any relatives from Illinois or neighboring Wisconsin, much of what the archives has might be of assistance.
It is always great to have a town’s history in the form of a time line written out. The town had its beginning in the 1830s. By 1850, the whole Lake County, including Millburn, had over 14,000 residents. Over the years industries centered on dairy products.
In the archives are documented maps representing some 20 miles of government land sales with the names of those individuals getting the land. This can be useful with ancestors from this general area.
One section to be sure to review is the Family Names – Biographical Sketches covering the pioneer and later families of the area. Some are quite detailed with a family tree, occupations of family members and some with photos. Approximately 111 family surnames are listed.
An overview of the occupations is supplied along with the schools in the area with photos. A section done about Millburn’s participation during the American Civil War and before that the underground railroad system to assist runaway slaves has information from newspapers, individual diaries and veteran‘s organizations.
The Millburn cemetery and newspaper clippings collection will supply data on births and deaths as well as general news of the community over the decades.
Maybe several of your ancestral hometowns have a similar historic society or association with many of its documents and records now online. Check this site out and investigate your own family’s hometowns for what is online now.
PHOTO above: Millburn Masonic Temple