Happy 65th Barrington Hills!
- Posted by Barrington Hills
- On July 5, 2022
Barrington Hills was incorporated on Friday, July 5, 1957.
The Barrington area was first settled in the 1830s as a farming community, with the Village of Barrington incorporating in 1865.
With gently rolling hills, many covered in towering oak trees, natural kettle moraine lakes and ponds, open spaces, the Barrington area in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries attracted affluent Chicago families looking for a summer retreat from the crowded and dirty city, yet within a day’s journey by horse and buggy, and later by automobile or train from Chicago.
These new residents purchased farms and built their estates, continuing to operate “gentlemen farms’ with farm managers to run them. With the completion of the Chicago and Northwestern Railway, the travel time from Chicago enabled these residents to live in the Barrington Countryside and work in Chicago. In 1921 a group of these prominent Chicago businessmen purchased the 220 acres for the Barrington Hills Country Club and the nucleus of what was to become the Village of Barrington Hills was born.
As more families moved to the Barrington Countryside, the Country Club, the Riding Club of Barrington Hills, and the Fox River Valley Hunt became the social networks for their rural community with shopping close by in the Village of Barrington.
In the prosperous mid-1950’s, as post-war economic development blossomed, and the new network of roads and commuter railroads made the suburbs accessible to many more Americans anxious to move from the cities, large-scale housing developments began to sprout up on what had been rural farmland. When developers purchased several thousand acres south of the Barrington area in Bartlett, and then in nearby Carpentersville for hundreds of homes on quarter-acre lots, farsighted Barrington Hills residents realized that if the Barrington Countryside was to remain a rural oasis in a sprawling urbanization movement, and retain its five (5) acre minimum zoning, that incorporating as a Village was the only way to preserve this “special way of life” that had been the core of the Countryside since its inception more than 50 years earlier.
The Village has over 5,000 acres of Forest Preserve within its borders. The Riding Club of Barrington Hills, founded in 1937, has maintained a trail system throughout the Village with the generosity of landowners who allow members to ride horses across their property.
In today’s busy, often impersonal world, Barrington Hills is an oasis of another time, another way of life, where residents not only know each other, but join together to enjoy their interests and hobbies, and participate in the village-wide events like the annual Independence Day Run, the Barrington Hills Fall Festival in September, or those pertaining to conservation, equestrian, education, the country club or the many casual neighbor sponsored get-togethers.