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Uncovering the History of O’Fallon, IL: A Quaint Town with a Big Story

O’Fallon, IL is a small town with a rich history that spans back hundreds of years. Located in St. Clair County, Illinois, O’Fallon is just 15 minutes east of downtown St. Louis, Missouri. O’Fallon was founded in 1854 and is named after Colonel John O’Fallon, a wealthy businessman and philanthropist who founded the town.

One of the most interesting aspects of O’Fallon’s history is how it evolved from a small prairie settlement into a thriving town with a diverse economy. The town started off as a small farming community, with its residents growing wheat, corn, and other crops. However, as the town grew, it became a hub for transportation and commerce, with a number of different industries popping up all throughout O’Fallon.

In the late 19th century, O’Fallon became known for its many manufacturing plants, which produced everything from railroad cars to furniture. The town also became a major transportation hub, with the Wabash Railroad running through O’Fallon and connecting the town to other major cities in the Midwest.

Throughout the years, O’Fallon has also been a key player in the region’s military history. During World War II, a large army base was built in O’Fallon, serving as a training ground for thousands of U.S. soldiers. The army base helped to bring prosperity to the town, and attracted many new residents who decided to settle in O’Fallon after the war.

Despite all of its success, O’Fallon also has a dark past that is worth uncovering. In the early 20th century, a group of vigilantes known as the Ku Klux Klan operated in the town, terrorizing black residents and intimidating anyone who opposed their agenda. The Klan’s reign of terror came to an end after local journalists and politicians began to speak out against them, but the damage had already been done.

Today, O’Fallon is a vibrant community that blends its rich history with modern amenities. The town has a number of beautiful parks and green spaces, as well as a bustling downtown area filled with restaurants, shops, and other attractions. While O’Fallon may be small, it’s a town with a big story, and one that’s worth exploring for anyone interested in local history.