Henry Middaugh began his journey as one of the founding fathers of Clarendon Hills when he came to Chicago in 1854. After growing tired of the city life, Middaugh sold his business interests in Cook County and headed west. Middaugh settled in an area eighteen miles west of Chicago in an area of DuPage County known at the time as West Hinsdale. In 1873, West Hinsdale officially became known as the village of Clarendon Hills, and Middaugh was one of its most wealthy inhabitants.
When Middaugh moved west, he purchased 270 acres of land north of the recently established railroad. This purchase made him the principal owner of Clarendon Hills property north of the tracks. Initially, Middaugh used his land exclusively as a farm, but in 1891 he vacated the area between the railroad and what is now Chicago Avenue in preparation for construction of his residence, Middaugh Mansion. Middaugh continued to farm approximately eighty acres of land north of Chicago Avenue, but even this land was ultimately re-purposed as part of the Hinsdale Golf Club.
Middaugh’s property – while significant – was not his only contribution to the burgeoning village of Clarendon Hills. Middaugh eventually became the DuPage County School Director and also a member of the Board of Supervisors. In addition to this, Middaugh was part of the reason for Clarendon Hills getting the nickname “Daisy Fields” because of the amount of daisies accidentally planted on his property. Middaugh made extensive contributions to the growth and notoriety of Clarendon Hills and is remembered as one of the founding fathers of the Village of Clarendon Hills.
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