Historical Society South Patio Dedicated to John McQueen

Many thanks to the DeKalb County Community Foundation (DCCF) for the grant awarded to the Kirkland Historical Society. We were able to landscape the building, have a paver patio installed on the south side of the building, and replace an air conditioner.
The items displayed were purchased with memorial donations and they represent farm life with the windmill, water pump, trough, and the sheep are a special tribute to John McQueen.
John MacQueen was born in 1867 in Perth, Scotland and came to America in 1887 at the age of 20. In 1896 he married Hortense Erickson and they lived at 212 West Hortense Drive.
That same year, he opened the sheep feeding yards in Kirkland. By 1907, he was feeding and shipping 1.5 million sheep annually. He prepared the sheep for Chicago contracts, including marketing, shearing, watering and feeding. John owned several thousand acres used for grazing his sheep.
Along with the growth of the sheep industry in Kirkland, John MacQueen is also responsible for the routing of Illinois Rte. 72 through Kirkland. In 1897 he built an electric plant with all night service to provide power for shears to be run for sheep shearing. He donated land for Camp Rotary MacQueen (located off Scout Road), the Kirkland Park, Hiawatha Schools, and the town’s water works.
John was very active in the community. He was a member of the Kirkland Congregational Church (formally located on the site of the Kirkland Historical Society), a member of the Masonic fraternity (he was a 33rd Degree Mason), served on the Village Board, and was elected to Village President from 1911 to 1915.
John died in 1945 and is buried in the mausoleum at Maple Cemetery.