Newspaper Clippings for
01 March 1940
CHURCH SOON TO ROUND OUT FULL CENTURY
Millburn Religious Group to Observe Centennial Next Fall;
Organized in 1840 in Log Cabin.
By Gladys Priddy
More than a century ago, a group of Scotch farmers and their
families settled in northern Lake county along Mill creek. Some
old settlers say that the Scotch pioneers called the creek a
"burn," and thus the settlement came to be known as Millburn. The
Whites, Mintos, Strangs, Bonners and Thains were among those early
Scotch settlers. Their descendants still live in the Millburn
With the countryside settled by thrifty and God-fearing Scotchmen,
it isn't surprising that a church soon became the center of
community life. The Millburn Congregational church known in all
of Lake County for the dinners the women of the Ladies' Aid serve-
-is now in its centennial year. It was organized in the fall of
1840 by the Rev. Flavel Bascom of Chicago, acting as agent for the
Home Missionary society.
In the spring of 1842, the Rev. E. G. Howe of Waukegan completed
the details of the organization. And now, for 100 years next
fall, the people of Millburn have gone to church on Sabbath
mornings, summer, winter, spring, autumn.
Log Cabin First Church
A small log cabin, erected near Robert Strang's home about 1840,
served the dual purpose of schoolhouse and church. In the early
days, the Rev. Mr. Howe went out to Millburn once a month to
preach. However, religious services of some kind took place each
Sunday. The Millburn folk didn't let the lack of a minister keep
them from church!
One of the early settlers was the Rev. William Dodge. He was a
Massachusetts man, and an upright one. Lake county history
records that he did much "to give Millburn its ancient reputation
for 'plain living and high thinking.'" At the age of 61 "Father
Dodge" began his work in Millburn.
Although one record reports the number of charter members as 16,
only 14 names are in the list given. Those names are:
William Abbott, Eliza F. B. Abbott, Mark Pitman Jr., Harriet
Pitman, Merril Pearson, Lydia Pearson, Robert Pollock, Elizabeth
Pollock, George Trotter, Jane Trotter, Samuel M. Dowst, Mary
Thayer, Alex. Kennedy and Abigail Berry.
The charter membership increased rapidly. Of Father Dodge it was
said, he "planted his stake, and from that out in every direction
his parish extended. He was interested in every man, woman and
child." Father Dodge was influential in organizing the Millburn
Mutual Insurance company, directed the church's stand against
slavery and against intoxicating beverages. For many years the
church, under his direction, stood opposed to secret societies.
Father Dodge noticed, studied and took a stand on all issues of
Helped in Civil War
Back in those early times, the Millburn congregation stood during
prayer and sat down to sing. The closing years of Father Dodge's
ministry came in the Civil war time when he threw open the church
doors to recruiting officers who plead the northern cause and
enlisted Millburn's sons. Father Dodge led in prayer for divine
guidance in the war.
A second church home, a larger building made of smooth siding, was
erected in 1847. In 1865, the regulation style "country church"
was built and remodeled in 1887. It had the traditional steeple
and long windows. There was a picket fence out in front.
Again remodeled in 1905, the church home burned Jan. 12, 1835, and
the replacing of the structure is a story of Millburn men hauling
bricks from the razed Third Congregational church of Oak Park,
hauling pews, windows and fixtures and helping with the
reassembling in Millburn for the new building which was dedicated
There are a list of "rules" at the Millburn church. Rule 5
states, in the matter of behavior, that the "proper course of
discipline" in personal and private offenses is laid down in Matt.
18: 15-18. Offenses of a public nature are taken care of in First
Cor. 5: 1-7.
In the church manual, published in 1907, the roll of members
includes Lloyd White, now an undertaker in Waukegan, and Mrs. L.
H. Tombaugh, now of Waukegan.
Aid Dates to 1850
The Ladies Aid of the church used to be the Ladies Sewing Circle,
and its history dates back to the 1850's. Families in the church
have included five generations of Thains, four generations of
Bonners and Whites and three generations of Mintos and
There are now 135 members, of which Mrs. Eliza Bonner who is "82
now, and I must have joined at 14" is one of the oldest and still
Deacons are Jesse Denman, Harold Minto and Leslie Bonner.
Trustees are Carl Anderson, Kenneth Denman and Frank Edwards,
Harold Minto is the church clerk and Gordon Bonner is secretary.
Melvin L. Frank has been the pastor for a year. Harold Minto is
the Sunday School superintendent, too, and Robert Denman is the
president of the active Christian Endeavor society.
Since the Methodist church at Hickory has been closed, former
members there have attended services at Millburn. Sometime this
summer, there will be a centenary celebration.
loose obituary, source unknown 16 March 1940Obituary
Father of Lake Villa Supervisor
Funeral services for Jay Reynolds Cribb, 81, of 1022 Victoria St.,
Antioch, who died Saturday night, were held today at the Strang
Funeral Home, Antioch, with burial in Angola Cemetery,
Lake Villa. The Rev. Samuel Pollock was in charge.
Mr. Cribb was the father of John Cribb, present Lake Villa
Township Supervisor. He was a lifelong resident of Lake County, the
son of pioneers who came from New York.
A farmer until 36 yars ago, Mr. Cribb was the owner of the first
electric plant in Antioch, which later was sold to the public service
company. He also owned a vulcanizing shop for five years, and a shoe
store. Mr. Cribb was honored by the Odd Fellows at the close of
his 50 years of membership in the lodge. Besides his son, John,
he is survived by two daughters, Mrs. Belle Kellog,
Mrs. Deborah Van Patten, 13 grandchildren and 13 great