German-Style Well in Old St Stephen’s Cemetery Lauds Carol Stream’s Immigrant History

St. Stephen Cemetery well has been recreated near the old St. Stephen Church Pioneer Cemetery in Carol Stream formerly the settlement of Gretna, Illinois. (Photo: Courtesy of Daily Herald 9/22/2022)

The following article was posted and printed in the Daily Herald newspaper on Thursday, September 22, 2022. Kevin Davis and his wife attended this event on August 18 2022.

Thursday, Aug. 18, was a beautiful summer day at St. Stephen Cemetery and Prairie in Carol Stream.
John Monino, representing Milton Township’s Cemetery Authority, dedicated a rebuilt well in the name of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Joliet. The story of how the well came to be refurbished goes back almost a year.

At the annual St. Stephen Family Day and Mass last September, board member Jeff Castle noticed what he thought was dangerous concrete rubble until he further investigated. He realized that the rubble covered a well.

At the time, Castle had the vision to “take something little and make it beautiful.” He thought he could do better than that. So, he started doing some research on German wells, since the settlers of Gretna, the original name of Carol Stream, were primarily of German descent.

He made plans for the well, building up smooth river stones capped by a ledge of stone. He then used white oak for the structure, with fragrant redwood to line the shingled roof. A wooden bucket on a winch completes the authenticity of the well from the late 1800s. Rebuilding the well is to honor the memory of immigrants who built the community.

Accepting the proclamation of dedication document for the Diocese of Joliet in Illinois was Eric Holloway, the diocese’s director of Catholic cemeteries.

Learn more about the history of St. Stephen Cemetery and Prairie or Friends of Pioneer Cemeteries at this link.

About Schlick Daleiden Families - DuPage and Kane Counties of Illinois

Kevin Davis is a retired Public Library Director. He is a Board member of the Winfield (IL) Historical Society. Davis has over 35 years experience working in public libraries. He is deeply interested in local Chicagoland, Dupage, and Kane County History. Davis earned a BA in History and an MA in Library Science from Dominican University. He is a volunteer researcher for the St. James Farm Forest Preserve part of the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County in Illinois. His work includes extensive writing and research on the McCormick family line who were former owners of St. James Farm. He is an avid family historian / genealogist and has done extensive research on the Schlicks and Daleidens of DuPage and Kane County Illinois.
This entry was posted in Gretna Illinois, St Stephens Church Gretna Illinois, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

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