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Natural Enquirer N e w s l e t t e r f o r S p r i n g Va l l e y S u p p o r t e r s a n d Vo l u n t e e r s

vol.3 no.4 • July/Aug. ‘12

In this issue...

Staying with a theme explored in the previous issue of the Natural Enquirer, this issue’s authors once again dive beneath the surface of things to explore and expose facts regarding mosquitoes, the Schaumburg area’s legacy of gravel mining, and sheep (or the lack, thereof) in Schaumburg’s farming history. A key aspect of any person’s education should be both the desire and willingness to seek deeper knowledge, to question what we think we know and look beyond what is visible and obvious. In today’s world, many rely exclusively on technology and the Internet to inform them about their world. While a very useful tool, the Internet has flaws that are often overlooked (i.e., its very openness and accessibility means that lots of opinion and incorrect information is presented as fact). Scientists also utilize technology but always return to the real world to test their theories and confirm their hypotheses. A part of Spring Valley’s mission is to help people better understand the natural world and the often complex human relationship with the land. If we didn’t provide information that also provoked further questions from our readers and program participants, then we would not be doing our job as resource interpreters. Our goal is to clarify the view into the depths of knowledge rather than muddy the waters of inquiry.

Inside What’s Eating You?..............................................2 The Gravelmeisters of Schaumburg...................3 What’s Happenin’.............................................. 4-5 Sheep on the Heritage Farm at Spring Valley....6

Spring Valley General Information....................10 Volunteer News Contents Volunteern Want Ads...........................................7 Volunteer Calendar........................................... 8-9

Visit www.parkfun.com and take our Spring Valley Program Survey.


S p r i n g Va l l e y • N a t u r a l E n q u i r e r • J u l y / A u g u s t 2 0 1 2

What’s Eating You

I

by Dave Brooks

t’s a late summer evening, and your eyelids are getting heavy so you put down your book and prepare for bed. Since the air has cooled off somewhat from the heat of the day, you turn off the air conditioner and open a bedroom window to let in the fresh night air. The sound of crickets and the smell of cut grass wafts into your room. You lie back down and close your eyes, but before you drift off to sleep, a barely audible high-pitched whine drifts over your head and settles somewhere near your left ear. You slap at the offending intruder, miss, and hear it whine off towards the ceiling. The light goes on and your guard goes up. The restful slumber you were so ready for will have to wait.

There are over 2,400 species of mosquitoes found worldwide and over 100 here in North America. Their notoriety comes not so much from the fact that they bite and are a nuisance, but from the fact that many types of mosquitoes spread disease. Scientifically, mosquitoes are known as disease vectors. Many pathogens (microscopic viral and bacterial disease organisms) cannot survive outside of the host animal’s body and require a vehicle to get them from one creature to the next. Biting insects such as mosquitoes, ticks, and fleas, in whose bodies the pathogens are often able to survive, provide that vehicle. Not all mosquitoes spread disease; only those that have bitten an animal already carrying a disease play the role of disease vector when they, in turn, bite another animal and pass on that disease. Most diseases are species specific. For example, people don’t get heartworm, a mosquito-borne disease that affects dogs, although mosquitoes carrying the heartworm virus have undoubtedly bitten people. There are exceptions to this, however. Some diseases have the ability to exist within and affect secondary hosts. West Nile virus is a good example. This is a disease that most severely affects birds; however, it can afflict secondary hosts, in particular people and horses. In order for this to occur, a mosquito must have first bitten a bird carrying the virus and then proceed to bite a person or horse. All female mosquitoes require a blood meal in order to produce and lay eggs. Male mosquitoes, which look similar to the females except for their large feathery antennae, feed on flower nectar. It is only after the females have mated that they acquire their bloodthirsty tendencies. They usually require more than one blood meal in order to fully develop their eggs. The eggs are then laid singly or in rafts of 200 or more, depending on the species. Most mosquitoes lay their

Inland Floodwater Mosquito

eggs directly onto the surface of standing water, although some lay eggs on damp soil, where they lie in wait for rains that will flood the area. Mosquito larvae cannot develop without water. The larvae, called wrigglers due to the motion they make while in water, will die if the water they’re in disappears. Larvae develop into adults within 4–14 days, well within the lifespan of all but the smallest puddles and pools. Permanent bodies of water, however, are not very hospitable to mosquitoes, since they often contain small fish and other predaceous aquatic insects, many of which feed on mosquito larvae. This is why the ideal mosquito breeding ground is a small pool of stagnant water, isolated from natural ponds, streams, and marshes. 2

The female mosquito, which appears to us as a small slow-flying insect, is in close detail, superbly designed to extract blood from larger creatures. Through the use of some amazing sensory abilities, some of which sound like high-tech military weapons, she is able to locate the source of her next blood meal. Although her eyesight is poor, she is able to detect the infrared heat, carbon dioxide, moisture, and certain aromas that our bodies exude. When we walk through our backyard or local forest preserve, we leave a trail that she is able to follow with ease. If we’re perspiring from a brisk walk or workout, we leave a more noticeable and attractive trail. Some colognes and perfumes also enhance our attractiveness. Insect repellents don’t actually repel the mosquito but interfere with her detection apparatus so she has a hard time finding us—sort of like jamming her radar. If a mosquito blunders into your skin, even with repellent, she may still bite you.


S p r i n g Va l l e y • N a t u r a l E n q u i r e r • J u l y / A u g u s t 2 0 1 2

What’s Eating You (continued) Once you have been detected and the mosquito has alighted on your skin, the insect world’s version of the hypodermic needle is put into action. The mouthparts of the female mosquito consist of six needle-like stylets. Four of these pierce your skin, while the other two are pressed together to form a straw with which she is able to siphon your blood. Prior to drinking her fill, however, she injects the bite with her own saliva. This serves to prevent the blood from clotting, which blood does naturally at the site of a wound. In some species, the saliva also serves to anesthetize the wound, so that we don’t feel much as we’re bitten. It is this foreign saliva that causes the familiar itch. A localized allergic reaction results in the production of histamines which cause the bite area to swell, turn red, and itch. Mosquito saliva always contains some foreign bacteria, which enter our body when we’re bitten. If it contains a pathogen that is able to make itself at home in the human body, and for which our body has not developed any immunity, we may get sick. Among the several mosquito species found in northern Illinois, two in particular are more common, and most likely to bite people. The common floodwater mosquito, Aedes vexans, is the one most of us encounter at dusk or anytime we walk through a wooded area during summer. It gets its name from the fact that it lays eggs in damp soil, and these eggs hatch and develop in the floodwaters resulting from heavy rains. During extended dry spells, their numbers are very low. While most mosquitoes become most active at night, floodwater mosquitoes will bite on cloudy days or in shaded areas during the middle of the day. Their bite is usually felt, since the saliva contains no anesthetic. They are strong fliers and will fly several miles from their point of origin, so it doesn’t matter how far away you live from the forest preserve. Floodwater mosquitoes have not been found to be vectors of West Nile virus. The house mosquito, Culex pipiens, is the species that has been implicated in the spread of West Nile virus. These insects breed in stagnant water containing lots of organic matter such as

decaying leaves and grass (which is why stormwater catch basins and clogged gutters on homes are prime breeding sites). The adult females are mainly nocturnal and begin to forage after dark. They are also weak fliers, and tend to stick close to the location from which they hatched. While birds are their preferred targets, they will bite people as well. They are also the most likely to follow us into our homes and will even over-winter there, thus the name. Unless you relocate to a place with an extremely dry or cold climate, mosquitoes are likely to intrude upon your life at one time or another. Eradication efforts around the world have resulted in some success in controlling mosquito numbers but never in eradicating them. Many chemical pesticides, of course, appear promising at first, but eventually backfire; since they also kill beneficial insects and the targeted pests eventually develop resistance to the pesticides. Modern medicines have been a more effective tool, enabling us to treat many of the diseases transmitted by mosquitoes. Personal mosquito control is often a simpler matter. This includes protecting yourself from being bitten as well as doing your part to prevent mosquitoes from breeding near your home. Here are some things with proven effectiveness: • Eliminating potential breeding places that collect water near your home, including clogged gutters, old containers, plastic tarps, etc. • Treating decorative backyard pools with a larvicide, which uses Bt bacteria to kill mosquito larvae, and properly maintaining swimming pools. • Insuring that your window screens and doors are mosquito-proof. • Wearing loose-fitting, light colored clothing when outdoors, especially at night. • When outside at dusk or at night, applying a mosquito repellent containing DEET. 3

Mosquito Breeding Habitat in Clogged Gutter

Here are some things that have been shown to be mostly ineffective: • Bug lights/zappers – studies have shown that over 5 days, less than 7% of the insects caught by these amusing devices are mosquitoes. The rest were moths and other harmless nightflying insects. • Fogging with pesticides – while fogged pesticides such as permethrin will kill adult mosquitoes, it must make direct contact with them. Fogging only kills some of the mosquitoes hiding in and around your yard, and in the process kills other beneficial insects. • Citronella candles – these smell nice and have some insect-repelling properties, but unless you plan to outfit your patio like a votive candle rack in a church, they won’t have that much of an effect. • Bat houses – bats are wonderful creatures and eat many insects at night, but only a small percentage are mosquitoes. • Purple martin houses – ditto Oh, and don’t forget that well-aimed swat. It is one of our best low-tech weapons.


S p r i n g Va l l e y • N a t u r a l E n q u i r e r • J u l y / A u g u s t 2 0 1 2

The Gravelmeisters of Schaumburg

by Walter Plinske

generally mirrors the shape of present day Lake Michigan, the area from which the ice spread.

Gravel Pit Steam Shovel

In our particular stretch of Salt Creek called Spring Valley, there exists a hidden hoard of something that in some parts of the world, such as the muddy Amazon basin, is so scarce it must be shipped in from thousands of miles away. For some here it was a source of income to supplement a hardscrabble existence. For others it proved to be the road to wealth. For Spring Valley itself, it was the stuff of its nativity and of its near despoliation. It is gravel, common everyday gravel. How did this bounty come to be and just who were these gravelmeisters of Schaumburg?

was filled in with sediment laden meltwater. After the ice melted, the accumulated sediment was deposited as an easily accessible mound of layered sand and gravel.

Every year was comEven today, Spring Valley is a wet place posed of a winter despite past drainage schemes, altered season when the stream flow, and the presence of major melting was minimal sewer trunk lines cut thru its heart in the and an increasingly 1970s. When Herman Boeger, the son warmer summer seaof the original settler, Johann, owned son when the melting and farmed the place, an even wetter was phenomenal. It environment would have made agriwas the action of this culture marginal. So by 1900 it is not meltwater, combined surprising that Herman and later his son with summer precipiJohn turned to digging gravel and selltation, that produced ing it to neighbors to induce the land to the mechanism by produce more income. The result of the which the sorting digging is still evident today to the south and deposition of the jumbled heaps of the Merkle Cabin and in the area to of till into orderly layers the east of the barn at the occurred. As water loses Heritage Farm. While the its energy the largest maBoeger diggings covered terial drops out first. Mejust a few acres, to the dium size sediments are south and east Herman’s then deposited into well brother-in-law, Christoph, sorted layers. The finer and the rest of the Fasse clay particles may be clan were digging on a swept clear to the ocean. much larger scale. A Fasse These meltwater streams pit was located on the west form fan-shaped accuside of Meacham road just mulations that eventually north of Salt Creek coverArtesian Plumbing coalesce to produce an ing over 40 acres. Demand “outwash plain”. for Fasse gravel was such that in 1918 a rail track was laid onto Meacham Road Over time, the ice vanished and the outto supply the first concrete incarnation wash deposits became obscured of Higgins Road. Exploitation continued by vegetation, continued erosion, there until the 1970s, when the pit was and soil formation. For thousands filled in. Eventually a subdivision called of years they were trod upon and Lion’s Gate was built on the site. ignored by the native Indians

Primordial Spring Valley received its trove of gravel, like many other locations in N.E. Illinois, from the latest stage of glaciation called the Wisconsin. About and later, European explorers 20,000 years ago, and traders. When Spring Valley this glacier assumed was finally settled in the 1840s, it a stationary position took an entire generation before here when the rate of modest improvements such as melting equaled the gravel roads could be realized. rate of advance. Like By the 1880s the need for better a gargantuan contransportation of goods to marveyer belt, the glacier ket, especially perishable dairy Wisconsin Age Moraines deposited all the products, compelled the locals to rock, sand, and clay, called “till”, that it search for assessable gravel deposits. had scrapped up on its way here. What The first deposits to be exploited probformed, over hundreds to thousands ably weren’t Spring Valley’s because of of years was a giant u-shaped ridge of its wetlands. The first to be mined were debris 10 to 20 miles wide called the another glacial feature called a kame. Valparaiso moraine. The Valparaiso Kames formed when a hole in the ice 4

Another Fasse pit was located further to the east on Rohlwing Road. This pit also covered over 40 acres and by the 1950s was so deep that the bedrock underlying the glacial deposits was reached. By this time the pit was owned by Leonard Scharringhausen. It was at this stage that the impermeable shale layer was removed that had prevented further downward flow of the groundwater. It has since been asserted that this was the cause of the extinction of the artesian waters of Spring Valley. Since then, the pit was abandoned and allowed to fill with water, making it a favorite graveyard for “hot” cars.


S p r i n g Va l l e y • N a t u r a l E n q u i r e r • J u l y / A u g u s t 2 0 1 2

Click on program/icon for information and to register online.*

*To register online you must have a current SPD account with assigned PIN number. To create a new account, visit the registration desk at the CRC and verify residency. Non-residents may call Spring Valley to set up an account.

Spring Valley Educator’s Open House

Monday, Aug. 20, Wednesday, Aug. 22 or Aug. 29 • 3:30-4:30PM Join environmental education staff at Spring Valley Nature Center to learn about all we have to offer you and your students! Exciting teacher workshops, possible scholarships, outreach programs, on site adventures, pre and post visit activities, and new exhibits await you. Don’t miss this opportunity to share a snack with other teachers and to discover this hidden treasure within the Schaumburg Park District. Call 847/985-2100 to reserve a place.

Sundown Supper on the Farm

ADULT

Friday, July 13 • 6:00-9:00P Saturday, Aug. 4 • 4:30-7:30P Help with evening chores, make supper and get a chance to watch the sunset.

Nature’s Night Life - ADULTS ONLY! Friday, July 13 • 8:00-10:00P Start your weekend with a relaxing and enlightening evening walk at Spring Valley.

Up and At’em Animal Chores

Restorative Yoga Experience at the Cabin

Saturday, July 28 • 7:30-9:30A Sunday, Aug. 12 • 7:30-9:30A Wake up and get outside to help with animal chores.

Friday, July 20 • 7:00-8:00P Recharge the body, mind and soul in a soothing, stress-free environment.

FAMILY

All Ages

The following programs have a special family rate. By registering ONE child, it is assumed that a minimum of two people (one adult and child) or a maximum of four people are attending. Do NOT register additional people, they may pay on the day of the program.

Free - Heaven’s Watch

Sat., July 14 • 9:30-11:30P....“Wild Duck” Cluster in Saturn Sat., Aug. 9 • 9:00-11:00P....Perseids Join Chicago Astronomical Society as they set their telescopes for a peek at the night skies.

Family Campout at Spring Valley

Free - Neighborhood Nature Areas

Firefly Fandango

Saturday & Sunday, Aug. 11-12 • 4:00P-11:00A Families will sleep overnight at Spring Valley. Nature walks, a star party and other activities are scheduled.

Friday, Aug. 10.......................• 7:00-8:30P Ruth Macintyre Conservation Area Discover these hidden jewels and find out what lives there and how these areas are managed.

Saturday, July 7 • 8:30-9:30P Begin with a short discussion on fireflies and then enjoy a twilight wagon ride to view the incredible light show.

Oktober Festessen

Summer Camps at Spring Valley

Saturday, Oct. 13 • 6:00-8:15P Enjoy a traditional German dinner in the historic farmhouse, and let Riesling, dessert and good conversation round out the night.

Turtle Tracks

Spring Valley offers a variety of summer camps (full and half-day) for children 5-15 years old.

Wednesday, July 25 • 4:30-5:30P Discover the difference between a land turtle and one that prefers to live in the water.

For more information, call 847/985-2100 or click here. 5


S p r i n g Va l l e y • N a t u r a l E n q u i r e r • J u l y / A u g u s t 2 0 1 2

Monarch Butterflies: Migration and Tagging

Buzzing About Insects

Sunday, July 22 • Noon-4:00P • FREE Join us at the Merkle Cabin to have fun with insects. This is a drop-in program for all! Gain a new respect and understanding of these important and necessary critters. A craft will be available for free and beverages for a small fee.

Sunday, Sept. 9 • 2:00-3:30P Learn about the amazing migratory habits of the monarch butterfly.

Horse Drawn Wagon Rides at the Farm

Harvest Moon Bonfire

Saturday, Sept. 29 • 6:30-8:30P Help celebrate this time of the year by taking a wagon ride through Spring Valley, roasting hot dogs and marshmallows over an open fire, and enjoying a lantern-lit tour of the farm.

Just Desserts

Relax and enjoy a 15-minute horse-drawn wagon ride through Heritage Farm as staff relates information about the farm, animals and the history of Schaumburg’s farm families. Dress for the weather.

Perseid Meteor Party

Wagon Ride Schedule

Budding Artists

• Tickets are sold on a first-come, first-served basis the day of the ride, starting one-half hour prior to the first ride and until 15 minutes prior to the last ride of the day. • Tickets are $3/person; children 3 and under are free. • Wagon holds a maximum of 12 people. • Rides begin and end next to the Farm Visitor Center.

Wednesday, July 25 • 6:00-8:00P Enjoy wild berries of all kinds including blackberries, blueberries, raspberries and strawberries. Saturday, Aug. 11 • 9:00-11:00P Enjoy a star-studded party celebrating this spectacular annual late summer meteor shower. Interpreters will be on-hand to guide you through the Summer Triangle and other sights. Additional activities and crafts will take place in and around the Nature Center. Feel free to bring a folding chair or blanket so you can sit back in comfort and scan the skies.

Youth

Saturday, July 21.............................. 9-11AM Sunday, July 29................................ 4-6PM Saturday, Aug. 11............................. Noon-2PM Sunday, Aug. 19............................... 2-4PM

Saturday, Aug. 4 • 10:00A-Noon Join fellow novice artists studying the work of Georges Seurat then go on a hike to create a beautiful work of art en plein air!

Note: Wagon rides may be cancelled due to extreme weather (storms or heat) and/or animal health issues. Please call 847/985-2100 or check www.parkfun.com for updated information.

Fairytales and Bedtime Stories

Groups of 12 and larger are encouraged to schedule their own group wagon rental. For more information, call Heritage Farm at 847/985-2102.

Friday, July 20 • 7:00-8:00P Enjoy some timeless tales and partake in oldfashioned cookies in the farmhouse kitchen just before bedtime.

Hopper Hangout

Saturday, Aug. 5 • 1:00-2:30P Come and hop with the hoppers. Enjoy a chorus of sound and a symphony of color!

Concert at the Cabin Saturday, Sept. 8 • 5:30-8PM • FREE

Lazy, Hazy, Crazy Summer Sleepover at the Farm

Enjoy wonderful music in a beautiful setting! The Spring Valley Community Concert Band will be performing under the shelter on the wooded cabin grounds as evening settles in. Picnic fare and beverages will be available for purchase or bring your own, along with lawn chairs or a blanket. Picnic tables will be available. The music will begin at 6:30PM. Merkel Log Cabin is an easy 10-minute walk from the Nature Center parking lot.

Friday & Saturday, Aug. 17-18 • 7:00P-8:30A Spend the night at Heritage Farm. The evening includes scavenger hunts, great activities and a homemade snack.

Lights in the Night

Friday, July 20 • 8:00-9:30P A flash of yellow and then it’s gone. Fireflies are one of the most fascinating insects of summer. 6


S p r i n g Va l l e y • N a t u r a l E n q u i r e r • J u l y / A u g u s t 2 0 1 2

Sheep on the Heritage Farm at Spring Valley Many years ago, when the Heritage icans did not own sheep. In researching Farm first opened, visitors were greeted this article, the largest head count for with a pastoral sheep owners with Gerscene of grazing man names was 12. sheep. People Practically speaking, now often ask sheep on a farm like the why there aren’t Heritage Farm would any sheep. There have been superfluous are several reanot only for historical reasons, both historisons, but also because cal and practical, there are two other kinds and these may of grazing animal on site. be traced to one While sheep are smaller Shearing Sheep at the Heritage Farm man in particular. in stature than cows and Historically, sheep were not very popuhorses, they require a good amount of lar in the Chicago area in the 1880s. land on which to graze. Since Otto, the Following the Civil War, industrialization Heritage Farm’s Jersey steer, probably advanced throughout the United States, doesn’t want to share his pasture any and with it came new inventions that more than he already does, and the made it easier to harvest cotton and census records indicate much larger prepare it for clothing. As a result, prices horse and cow populations in 1880s for cotton declined and pre-made cloth Schaumburg, omitting sheep from the could be purchased in a general store farm creates a more accurate and manfor less than it cost to raise sheep for ageable portrayal of what life was truly wool. In very little time, raising sheep like. changed from being a necessity for There is, however, one interesting statismany farmers to a nostalgic hobby. tic to note about the 1880s agricultural If you were to look at the agricultural census record from Schaumburg Towncensus records for 1880s Schaumburg ship regarding sheep. If you were to Township, the majority of German-Amersimply average out the animals owned

by Patricia Kennedy & Jane Rozek

throughout the township, it would create a very false perspective about sheep ownership at that time. This is due to a gentleman of New England descent, Horace P. Williams, who was one of the first Yankee settlers to come to Schaumburg Township. He arrived well before the influx of German immigrants and owned 400 sheep when the 1880s census record was taken, thus skewing the ratio of sheep to farmers. It must have been very interesting to be one of the only Yankees to live among so many German speaking settlers. Jane Rozek, the local history librarian for the Schaumburg Township District Library, actually received an inquiry about Mr. Williams back in January. It seems that others were just as interested to hear his story. This man may not have been German or acted as the typical German immigrants did around the township, but his story is just as important and interesting as those who settled the area. So without further ado, I would like to present Jane’s blog article on Mr. Williams. If you are interested in more blogs about the history of Schaumburg please visit http://ourlocalhistory.wordpress.com/

Horace P. Williams: An Early Pioneer of Schaumburg Township

by Jane Rozek, Local Librarian at the Schaumburg Township District Library A couple of weeks ago I received a call from a gentleman who was doing research on an early Schaumburg Township pioneer by the name of Horace P. Williams. He is a great, great, great grand-nephew and he wondered how much information we had on his relative. Knowing a fair amount about some of our German settlers, it was time to look into a gentleman who was clearly not of that lineage. It turns out we had a number of sources in our Local History Digital Archive. Mr. Williams was one of a group of New Englanders in the 1830s who was looking for cheap land. He found it in Schaumburg Township and, from 1844 to 1846, proceeded to purchase 800 acres. The land was in Sections 10, 11

and 14. Think of standing in the north entrance of JC Penney at Woodfield Mall, looking north and west, and you’re getting a glimpse at the Horace P. Williams acreage. Born on April 16, 1813, in Canaan, New Hampshire, the story goes that Mr. Williams first came to the Lake County, IL area in 1838 and settled in Schaumburg Township in 1841. He returned to the northeast in 1843 and married Lavina T. Thomas of Montgomery, VT. They journeyed back to our township and purchased the property mentioned in the paragraph above. The story (as mentioned in a 1903 obit and numerous other places) also goes that Mr. Williams took another trip back east and drove a flock of sheep from Ohio to Schaumburg 7

Township—the first sheep of the area. He and Lavina had four children: Flora, Owen, Ida and Eva. According to a 1903 obit of Lavina’s, he spent his life on this farm, presumably raising sheep. The agricultural census of 1860 sheds some valuable light on his farming operation. He was the largest landowner of the township with a total cash value of $23,200. (The regular federal census of 1860 lists his total value as $34,000.) He owned a team of oxen, eight horses and 564 sheep. The wool production must have been substantial but the figure is not given. It is stated, though, that the farm produced 50 gallons of molasses, 20 bushels of grass seed, 1500 bushels of corn, 125 tons of hay and average yields of oats, wheat and potatoes. The


S p r i n g Va l l e y • N a t u r a l E n q u i r e r • J u l y / A u g u s t 2 0 1 2

Sheep on the Heritage Farm at Spring Valley (continued) farm was so busy that it was necessary for him to employ William and Louis Thies from Prussia as farmhands and Ann Beamish from Ireland as housekeeping help. Original documents owned by the Schaumburg Township District Library detail Mr. Williams’ dealings with the township fathers. On April 3, 1851, he signed a petition to the Schaumburg Township Highway Commissioners requesting stoppage on road construction of the Chicago and Dundee Road (now known as Higgins Road.) It is assumed said road would have gone through his property or that of his neighbors. Unfor-

tunately, a denial was issued on June 30 “because of non-compliance with the law.” Another document filed with the Schaumburg Township Commissioners of Highways on November 23, 1867, by a neighbor, Heinrich Mensching, sought governmental permission to lay a drain across the property of Williams and his neighbors, the Kublanks, in Section 11. While Mr. Williams and the Kublanks rejected the idea, the three Commissioners on December 9 gave their permission as well as the specifications of the size of the drain and the amount that would be laid on each parcel. It doesn’t appear he had a lot of luck with the local governmental hierarchy.

Sheep with Lamb at the Heritage Farm

According to family lore, he had an early affiliation with what is now North Central College in Naperville. Although he is not listed as one of the founders of the college, it is quite possible he was either at the conference that established the school and/or gave some funds at the time of its inception. It is said that,

because of the Williams’ generosity, the college issued a perpetual scholarship to the family for one male per generation. Horace eventually spun off some of his property to his daughter, Ida Yates. On August 4, 1881, while visiting his daughter, Flora Biggs in Kansas, Mr. Williams passed away at the age of 68. He was buried in Hillside Cemetery in Palatine, IL, leaving an estate of $60,000. His wife later moved to Palatine where she died on February 6, 1903. She is also buried in Hillside Cemetery. After the death of Horace, the farm was operated by his daughter Ida and her husband, Charles Yates. Charles inherited the farm when Ida died in 1895. Yates hung onto it until 1905 when he sold it to Charles Quindel. [As reported in Genesis of a Township] Thus ended the 64-year tale of Horace Williams— one of Schaumburg Township’s earliest pioneers. Material for this posting was extracted from the obituary of Lavina Williams, entries written by Wendy M. for Horace P. and Lavina Williams on findagrave.com, the Palatine Mailing List on rootsweb. com, and documents on Schaumburg Township District Library’s Local History Digital Archive.

Summer Intern at the Farm

My name is Amy Wywialowski and I just finished my sophomore year at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois. Although I live in Charleston most of the year, I am originally from Lake Zurich. I am a history major with a journalism minor and hope to work in the museum field someday. This summer I am the intern at Volkening Heritage Farm here at Spring Valley. As an intern, I get to do some of my favorite things, such as learn about history, dress up in period clothing, and learn how an open air museum differs from a collections-based one. I got here at the suggestion of some of my professors who recommended I look for a summer internship. When I heard about the farm, it sounded like an opportunity too good to pass up.

As one can probably guess from looking at my last name, I am of Polish and German descent. Another reason for me to be here—my ancestors were farmers and would have done things very similar to the way they are done at this farm. When I told my friends and family I would be working on a historic farm all summer, they all kind of looked at me funny—the suburban girl who had only seen pigs in a petting zoo was going to work on a farm? They could not believe it! But sure enough two weeks into it, they still cannot believe it, and they are amazed at the stories I come home with and the smile on my face. I cannot wait to see what kind of adventures the summer will bring as I help out with the many events the farm hosts and try my hand at interpreting, as well. I have always considered myself a fairly good baker, but we’ll see if that is the case when I use a wood burning oven. Nonetheless, it is going to be an experience and a fun one at that! I learn something new every day and, as time flies by, I’m loving every minute of it. 8


Volunteer News S p r i n g Va l l e y • N a t u r a l E n q u i r e r • J u l y / A u g u s t 2 0 1 2

Did you know you were automatically enrolled in the Helping Hands Mileage Club? This program offers registered volunteers an opportunity to redeem points for Park District related rewards. For every hour of volunteer service you give to Spring Valley you earn one point. Points accumulate for one year and may be redeemed at any time up to your anniversary date. Your anniversary date is determined by the month in which you first posted volunteer hours at Spring Valley. Points do not carry over year-to-year so be sure to redeem them before they expire. Have questions about the program or when your anniversary date is? Contact Judy Vito for further explanation.

Pats on the back to the following volunteers... • Lynn Eikenbary, Barb Mitchell, Donna Turner, and Carolyn White for assisting with Chef’s Fest.

Dates to Remember

• Mon., July 9................. 1-4pm

Handy Crafters Meeting • Sat., July 14................ 8-10am Animal Care Meeting • Tues., July 17.............. 6-8pm Animal Care Meeting • Sat, July 21................. 9am-Noon Farm Kitchen Training • Sun., July 22............... CANCELLED Conservation Workday • Fri., Aug. 3................... 6-9pm Volunteer Picnic • Mon., Aug. 13.............. 1-4pm Handy Crafters Meeting

Welcome New Volunteers…

• Lynn Eikenbary, Norina Waugh, and Carolyn White for helping with the spring Green Thumbs school programs.

• Dan Dreger • Ellen Hanes • Randee Lawrence • Jacqueline Muff • Jessica Van Horn • Amy Wywialowski

• Gail Ameer, Lynn Eikenbary, Nancy Fallen, Nancy Mamsen, Mary Matz, Carol Thomas, and Angela Waidanz for assisting with the various bird counts. • Janet Bedsole, Lynn Eikenbary, Venus Gintowt, Eileen LaBarre, Elsie Magnussen, Barb Mitchell, Penny Perles, and Carolyn White for assisting with the spring Mighty Acorns programs.

Happy Birthday to…

• Dean Bruckner for his attention to the peony beds in preparation for Peonies A’Plenty.

July

• Dean and Deanna Bruckner, Laurie Tatom, Norina Waugh, and Carolyn White for hosting Peonies ‘A Plenty. • Pat Campbell, Eve Carter, Barb Dochterman, Arthur Jeczala, Melina Lynch, and Joan Vodraska for their continuing clerical support. • Donna Turner for hosting the Chicago Astronomical Society’s Heaven’s Watches.

1 Ron Haskell Shari Rosenquist 4 Elsie Sears 5 Tony Coonrod 8 Tammy Terwelp 13 Andy Caccavari Katrina Miley 17 Barb Royce 18 Laurie Tatom

August

It’s Picnic Time!

Mark your calendars for Friday, August 3 and plan to join us at this year’s Volunteer Family Picnic. Bring a family member or friend to join in the fun. We’ll provide all the fixins’, just bring your appetite! The picnic is co-sponsored by the Spring Valley Nature Club which will present its Ellsworth Meineke Award to a deserving club member and/or volunteer. Invitations will go in the mail in July. 9

4 5 6 8 9 12 14

Pat Campbell Dan Gryzik Dave Kives Janet Bedsole Karen DeMay Shirley Turpin Bill Bailey Carolyn White Diane Shore Robin Clark

19 21 25 26 27 28 29

Mary Matz Donna Turner Tina Rokoszewski Joe Vito Tom Poklen Nancy Fallen Kathy DeGeus Elsie Magnussen

18 Janet Kraus 19 Nara Sethuraman 20 Donna Johnson 22 Kristi Overgaard 26 Carol Anagnostopoulos 28 Pete Justen 30 Nancy Filo 31 Nancy Schaefer


S p r i n g Va l l e y • N a t u r a l E n q u i r e r • Vo l u n t e e r C a l e n d a r

Sunday

1

Monday

2 M-T

Tuesday

July 2012

3 •Safari Adventure 9:30am •1880s Venture Camp 9:30am

Wednesday

4

Thursday

5

•Victorian Finishing School 9:45am

Th-F

Friday

6 •Safari Adventure 9:30am •1880s Venture Camp 9:30am

7 •Victorian Finishing School 9:45am •Firefly Fandango 8:30pm

Independence Day

8

9

Handy Crafters Meeting 1pm

M-F

10

•Half Day Bug Camp 9am •Sweet Potatoes 9:15am

11

16

•Mon. for Moms & Kids 3:15pm

M-F

12

17

•Gardener’s Delight 3:45pm

•Valley Ventures 9:15am •Animal Crackers Mini 9:30am

Schaumburg Community Garden Club 7pm

18

22

23

•Historian’s Apprentice 9:45am •Valley Ventures Half Day Camp 10am

M-F

24

•Campfire Cooking 10am •Summer Science Camp 10am

25

•Turtle Tracks 4:30pm

•Weekly Yoga at Cabin 6pm •Weekly Yoga at Cabin 7:30pm

29

•Wagon Rides at the Farm 4pm

30

•Sundown Supper at Farm 6pm •Nature’s Night Life 8pm

20 •Farmer Boot Camp 2:30pm •Hoot ‘n Howl Adventure 7:15pm

•Weekly Yoga at Cabin 6:30pm •Weekly Yoga at Cabin 8pm

•Skills for Outdoor Survival 9:15am •Animal Crackers 9:30am

•Half Day Bug Camp 9am •Wee Sprouts 9:15am

•Weekly Yoga at Cabin 6:30pm •Weekly Yoga at Cabin 8pm

19

Animal Care Meeting 6pm •Weekly Yoga at Cabin 6pm •Weekly Yoga at Cabin 7:30pm

•Buzzing About Insects Noon

13

14

Animal Care Meeting 8am

•Cookin’ Up History 9:30am •Spring Valley Survivor Camp 9:30am •Weekly Yoga at Cabin 6pm •Weekly Yoga at Cabin 7:30pm

15

Saturday

26

•Heaven’s Watch 9:30pm

21

Farm Kitchen Training 9am •Wagon Rides at the Farm 9am

•Fairytales/Bedtime Stories 7pm •Restorative Yoga at Cabin 7pm •Lights in the Night 8pm

27

28

•Up and At’Em 7:30am

•Chores and Chortles Mini 10am •Ponds, Puddles and Play 10am

•Just Desserts 6pm

•Weekly Yoga at Cabin 6:30pm •Weekly Yoga at Cabin 8pm

31

Farm Hours: Tues-Fri 9am-2pm • Sat & Sun 10am-4pm Cabin Closed

M-F

•Sweet Potatoes 9:15am •Chores and Chortles 9:30am

•Outdoor Play 9:30am •Nature Buddies 10am

•Cookin’ Up History 10am •All About Fish 10am

•Insect Mania 1pm

Bold indicates volunteer activities Italics indicates programs which may be taken as complimentary by volunteers See “What’s Happening” for program descriptions

•Weekly Yoga at Cabin 6pm •Weekly Yoga at Cabin 7:30pm

10


S p r i n g Va l l e y • N a t u r a l E n q u i r e r • Vo l u n t e e r C a l e n d a r

Sunday

Monday

Tuesday

August 2012 Wednesday

1

Farm Hours: Tues-Fri 9am-2pm • Sat & Sun 10am-4pm Cabin Closed Bold indicates volunteer activities Italics indicates programs which may be taken as complimentary by volunteers

M-F

5

6 M-F

7 •All About Frogs and Turtles 9am •Wee Sprouts 9:15am

•Sweet Potatoes 9:15am •Outdoor Play 9:30am

8 •Cookin’ Up History 9:30am •Sounds are Alive 10am

•Weekly Yoga at Cabin 6pm •Weekly Yoga at Cabin 7:30pm

12

•Up and At’Em 7:30am

13

Handy Crafters Meeting 1pm

14

Friday

2

See “What’s Happening” for program descriptions

•Hopper Hangout 1pm

Thursday

•Science Sleuths 10am •Tribal Adventures 10am

3

•Nature Buddies 10am •Cookin’ Up History 10am

•All About Fish 10am •Insect Mania 1pm

•Weekly Yoga at Cabin 6:30pm •Weekly Yoga at Cabin 8pm

Volunteer Picnic 6pm

9

10 •Farmer Boot Camp 2:30pm

Schaumburg Community Garden Club 7pm

•Weekly Yoga at Cabin 6:30pm •Weekly Yoga at Cabin 8pm

•Neighborhood Nature Area 7pm

15

16

17

Saturday

4

•Budding Artists 10am •Sundown Supper on the Farm 4:30pm

11

•Wagon Rides at the Farm Noon •Family Camp Out 4pm

•Heaven’s Watch 9pm

18

•Lazy, Hazy, Crazy Summer Sleepover 7pm

19

20

21

22

23

24

26

27

28

29

30

31

•Wagon Rides at the Farm 2pm

11

25


S p r i n g Va l l e y • N a t u r a l E n q u i r e r • J u l y / A u g u s t 2 0 1 2 Spring Valley • Schaumburg Park District • 1111 East Schaumburg Road • Schaumburg, Illinois 60194 Schaumburg Rd.

N Plum Grove Rd.

Spring Valley is a refuge of 135 acres of fields, forests, marshes and streams with over three miles of handicappedaccessible trails, a museum featuring natural history displays and information, and an 1880s living-history farm. Spring Valley is open to the general public. Admission is free.

Vera Meineke Nature Center

Volkening Heritage Farm

Phone Vera Meineke Nature Center...............................................847/985-2100 Volkening Heritage Farm......................................................847-985-2102

135 acres

HOURS Nature Center Grounds & Trails...............Open Daily...............8AM-5PM Volkening Heritage Farm Grounds..........Closed......................Dec.1-March 1

Vera Meineke Nature Center

The earth-sheltered visitor center provides an introduction to Spring Valley’s 135 acres of restored prairies, woodlands and wetlands and three miles of trails. The center contains natural history exhibits that change seasonally, a demonstration Backyard for Wildlife, an observation tower, classrooms, an extensive library, gift sales area and restrooms.

Nature Center/Museum Hours: Year Round.............Daily*.......... 9AM-5PM Farm Interpretive Program Hours: Nov. - March............Open for Special Events April 1 - Oct. 31.......Sat/Sun....... 10AM-4PM Tue-Fri........ 9AM-2PM Mon............ Buildings Closed

Volkening Heritage Farm

Step back into the past for a look at Schaumburg as it was in the 1880s – a rural German farm community. Help with seasonal farm chores, participate in family activities and games of the 1880s, or simply visit the livestock and soak in the quiet. Authentically dressed interpreters will welcome and share activities with visitors throughout the site.

Unless otherwise noted, all programs are held rain or shine. Participants should dress appropriately for weather conditions.

*All facilities closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day

Environmental Outreach Program

Spring Valley Birthday Parties

We’ll bring our outreach program to your site. Topics include forests, worms, spiders, mammals, owls, food chains, food webs, wetlands, and the water cycle. Students will participate in hands-on activities, songs, and games. Topics may be adapted to students in grades one through six, and are correlated with Illinois State Standards.

Looking for a unique, fun, and educational venue for your child’s birthday? Spring Valley is the answer! Two party themes are available. A hayride can be added for an extra fee. Call Spring Valley for more information.

Spring Valley Firepit and Shelter Rentals

Make your next scout group, business or family gathering something special! Spring Valley offers the use of a picnic shelter and fire pit in a wooded setting near the Merkle Log Cabin. Use of the site includes firewood, trash/recycling receptacles and benches, as well as picnic tables. No alcohol or amplified music permitted. Restrooms are available at the Heritage Farm or Nature Center, a 5–10 minute walk. The adjacent Merkle Log Cabin contains a restroom and may be rented for additional fees.

Programs at Spring Valley

School, Scout and adult groups are encouraged to take advantage of Spring Valley’s Environmental Education Program. Programs change seasonally and are geared for specific age groups. Correlations to the state standards and activity sheets are available on the SPD website, www.parkfun.com. Learn local history with a visit to the Heritage Farm. Elementary and high school students recreate farm life in the 1880s with Hands on History; second graders experience it through Heritage Quest. Children from the age of four through second grade will learn about food, farmers, and farm animals in Farms and Foods.

Hourly use fees: Residents:.............. $25

Civic groups:...............................$25

Non-residents:....... $40 Corporate/business groups:.......$55

Scout Badges

We offer many opportunities for scouts. Our programs will help with your badge, pin or patch requirements. Call for more information or stop in for a brochure.

Spring Valley Mission Statement:

Spring Valley’s mission is to educate area residents regarding the natural and cultural history of the Schaumburg area and how people have and continue to interact with and upon the landscape.

Schaumburg Park District BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS:

Natural Enquirer STAFF: Mary Rice Editor

Mike Daniels Sharon DiMaria David Johnson George Longmeyer Bob Schmidt

Judy Vito Volunteer Coordinator Dave Brooks “In this Issue...” Scott Stompor Graphic Artist

12

Schaumburg Park District Website: www.parkfun.com

E-mail:

springvalley@parkfun.com

Member:

Natural Enquirer: July/August 2012  

The Natural Enquirer is a newsletter for Spring Valley volunteers and supporters.

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