February 24, 2021
Dear Village Resident,
The Village Municipal Centre is your one-stop drop off for unwanted drugs, holiday light recycling, and food pantry donations. Also pick up brochures on identify theft, internet fraud and firearm responsibility, or information on new building projects you might have in mind. Find us at 7401 Meyer Road, Monday - Friday from 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Fire District Blood Drive
The Spring Grove Fire District is sponsoring a blood drive to be held Thursday, March 25, from 1:30 - 6:30 p.m. View ways to schedule your preferred appointment time here, facts about blood and donating blood here and about safety guidelines in place to due COVID-19. Thank you for supporting our local communities and helping to reduce the risk of local blood supply supply shortages.
Pet Nail Clipping Event
Nature's Feed and Sophie, from Plush Pups in Lake Zurich, will be hosting a pet nail clipping event on February 27, from 11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. Donations are requested to benefit Young at Heart Senior Pet Rescue in Woodstock. Nature's Feed is located at 2440 Westward Drive.
Photo of the Week
There are things to love about winter, like this sunrise in early February rising over Stade's Farm behind Mike Boston's house and over farmland along Route 173 taken by Rick Graves. If you have a photo of Spring Grove you would like to share, email it here.
Public Works Department Hiring
The Public Works Department has seasonal maintenance positions available. View more information here.
RBBA 2021 Registration Now Open
RBBA Registration for the 2021 Season is now open for T-Ball (both boys and girls) Softball (girls) and Baseball (boys) from the ages of 4 through 14.  Register your child at the RBBA website here. If you have any questions, please contact RBBA Player Agent, Brittney Bowman here. If you are interested in sponsoring RBBA's 2021 Season, please contact Brad Kranich here.
CD & L Dental
CD & L Dental Care offers affordable, personalized, and gentle dental care to give you healthy teeth and gums for life! View their flyer here for current specials or view their website and Facebook page for more information. Located at 2020 Route 12 Suite K. Call 815-675-2600.
COVID-19 Vaccine
Those eligible to receive the vaccine under Phase 1b include individuals under age 65 with high-risk medical conditions and those with disabilities. The expansion begins tomorrow, February 25. If you are in Phase 1B and Phase 1C, complete the enrollment form and once a clinic becomes available to each group, additional information on how to schedule an appointment will be directly emailed to you.

The Illinois Department of Health has FAQs regarding COVID-19 vaccinations. View information about getting tested here. View more information here.
Nippersink Library Open Next Week
The Nippersink Library new hours which will start Monday, March 1. Masks and social distancing practices are required at all times. Library programs remain canceled at this time and all toys and play spaces have been packed away for now. View the Grab & Go hours plus new limited curbside pickup hours here. View their website & Facebook page.
COVID-19 Update
Face Mask 2
We are still in Phase 4 mitigation. Keep physically distancing, washing your hands, and wearing your mask so we keep moving forward, and not take any steps back. A complete list of Phase 4 guidelines can be found by clicking here.

Anyone who develops loss of taste and smell and has a fever, cough or other respiratory symptoms might be coming down with COVID-19. That person should be tested as soon as possible and contact health professionals for the next steps.

A map and information of the status of every Illinois county can be found on the IDPH website here. View a map of the United States and other countries to view potential risks associated with traveling. Areas with increased risk of COVID-19 are based on case rates.

If you have health questions about COVID-19, call the hotline at 800-889-3931 or email questions here.
Blast from the Past - Blivin's Mills
Joseph Bliven and Rachel Knapp Bliven
Gristmill ad under new ownership
1892 map showing the location of the mill off of Blivin Street. The church drawing was Saint Mary's Mission, a Protestant Episcopal Church that once stood at 1814 Main Street.
Rachel and Joseph's headstones in Spring Grove Cemetery
Joseph Southwick Bliven came to Burton Township from Rhode Island in 1841 with his wife, Rachel Knapp, their two daughters, Catherine & Emily, and a son-in-law, Joseph Rice. Joseph Bliven was born in 1793 and by the time the family made the trek he was 48 years old. Joseph & Rachel first settled on a farm on the south side of the Nippersink Creek.

In 1843, the farm was sold, and Joseph, with the help of his son-in-law, built a grist mill on the north side of the Nippersink by Blivin Street around this area. The mill would grind wheat and barley into flour. The need was great for a local grist mill as the closest one, at that time, was 100 miles away in Michigan City, IN. Joseph died in 1846, but the mill was kept in operation until 1868. Then, in 1878, new owners purchased the mill and "put it in first class order" ready for grinding, but they also had flour and feed on hand for sale. Bliven family legend says the mill stone is in the creek somewhere and can still be seen when water levels are low.
Emily married John E. Mann in 1842 and they built a store, that served as the first post office, in 1847 and John was appointed the postmaster. At that time it was discovered there was another town called Spring Grove somewhere in Illinois, so the name was changed to Bliven’s Mills. The townspeople used both names in the ensuing years and in 1883 the name was officially changed back to Village of Spring Grove.

Rachel Bliven took over as postmaster in 1851 when the Mann's moved to Wisconsin. You may have noticed that Blivin Street is spelled differently, but as far back as 1872, maps show the name of the town spelled as Blivin's Mills, so it must have been okay with Rachel who lived until age 76, when she died in 1884. She was buried next to Joseph in the Spring Grove Cemetery on Main Street. (Spring Grove Cemetery was never affiliated with St. Mary's Mission that once stood next door.)

In 1938, relatives of the Blivens', wanted to replace Joseph's headstone, as after 90 years it had become chipped and stood askew. His great-grandson, Bill Cairns, suggested that because Joseph had served in the War of 1812, he was entitled to a government monument, so he filled out an application for a new headstone and sent it off to the U.S. War Department. Then one day, the headstone was delivered by train to the Spring Grove train station, which read:

J.S. Bliven
Pvt. Fry's Co.
Rhode Island Militia
War of 1812
Sept.10, 1846

That headstone, along with another marker, still stands. Next week, more on the Rice and Mann families.
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