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Gurnee Home Inspection Information

Interested in having a home inspection in Gurnee?
This information was taken from the Village of Gurnee website. For more information and other interests about Gurnee, please visit the
Village of Gurnee Homepage.





The first settlers came here on foot and horseback by oxen or via the Erie Canal and the Great Lakes. They came from the town of Warren, New York, in about 1835 and named the area Warren Township. In 1835-36, a land company from New York State erected a Community House (site of the old Gurnee Grade School) to accommodate families while they were locating and getting government land grants to their farms. Near the Community House there was a ford used by the Potowatomi Indians for crossing the river. A floating log bridge was built there in about 1842. Later a stationary wooden bridge was constructed, and still later an iron bridge was erected. With the erection of a permanent bridge, roads were established and this area became the hub of the township. It was at this junction that the Milwaukee Road crossed the river from west to east and then continued in a northeasterly direction to eventually join Chicago to Milwaukee. This road was "laid out" in 1836 by three early settlers, Thomas McClure, Mark Noble, and Richard Steele. The east-west road, now known as Grand Avenue, was a main route from McHenry County to the port of Waukegan. Stage coaches ran on this route as late as 1890.

Mother Rudd's Tavern" was a major stage coach stop between Milwaukee and Chicago; a stop for the western farmers taking their crops to Little Fort (Waukegan) to barter goods or to ship out of the harbor port of Lake Michigan. It also served as a stop during the Underground Railroad. The oldest house in the area is now owned by the Village of Gurnee for historical preservation.

The first school, O'Plaine School, was built in 1840 on the present site of the fire department. Then the Chicago, Milwaukee, and St. Paul Railroad was built through the area in 1873. The station, post office, and town were named Gurnee, after Walter S. Gurnee, former Mayor of Chicago and member of the railroad's board of directors.


Incorporated in 1928, Gurnee has had just 7 mayors in its history, including one who served just one year. This stability has occurred with all other elected and appointed officials. In 1972, Gurnee appointed its first full time administrator. Elementary education has grown from a one-room school to a three-school system. Warren Township High School was built in 1917-18 and opened with 57 pupils in attendance. After a disastrous fire in late 1985, the school has been completely rebuilt. The current enrollment is approximately 3,800 students.

Six Flags Great America Theme Park offers wholesome family entertainment and draws approximately 3 million guests annually. Great America also provides 3,000 part-time summer jobs. Great America generates substantial revenue for all taxing bodies which has helped improve services while maintaining a favorable tax rate. Revenues produced from sales tax make substantial improvements: sidewalk programs, blacktopping of streets and municipal buildings.


This is only part of the history which makes Gurnee, Illinois a very desireable place to live. Excellent schools, convenient transportation, abundant storefronts and several theme parks all add to the uniqueness of Gurnee. If this is where you have found your home, give us a call. We would be honored to inspect your new home with you. Our state licensed inspector will be as thorough as possible and at the same time, teach you what you need to know about your home.