The American Legion, Post No. 29
The American Legion was organized in 1920. In 1922 with the help of the Auxiliary it bought the site where it currently resides at Palatine Road and Greeley Street. By 1948 the groups had enough money to erect a building
at that site. Keeping patriotism alive and honoring our war heroes has been a consistent theme with members.
The Palatine Jaycees were organized in 1956. The group is involved in many community service projects. It began selling Christmas trees to raise funds in 1960.
The Ku Klux Klan
The Ku Klux Klan arrived in Palatine almost a hundred years ago. In 1923 a Chicagoan named J. W. Wakem invited his city friends to drive out to the farm he owned at the northwest corner of Palatine Road and Roselle Road for a Klan rally. Because roads were not well-marked in those days, Mr. Wakem had men with white flags stationed all along the route. The Herald covered the story and said that the fiery cross was much in evidence.
A year later the Klan gave a lecture at the Palatine Village Hall. The Herald printed an advertisement and a poster was displayed in the village hall. That same summer Klan members in full hooded dress marched into downtown Palatine and conducted an initiation ceremony at Seip Auditorium on Bothwell Street.
In August the Klan announced a big picnic at Wakem’s farm, calling the farm “Klan Grove”. A dance floor was built and an immense crowd came to watch initiation ceremonies. A month later Klan Day was declared at the Cook County Fair southeast of Hicks Road and Baldwin Road.
Two years later legislators in Springfield began authoring bills to restrict activities of the Klan by forcing members to register with the Secretary of State.
The property at Roselle Road and Palatine Road was purchased in 1925 by the Cudahy Packing Co. of Chicago. The meatpacker built a golf course for the use of its employees. In 1938 A. T. McIntosh purchased it and renamed it Inverness Country Club.
The Modern Woodmen of America
Palatine had a chapter of this organization in the early 1900’s. Although primarily devoted to providing its members with insurance, the group had elaborate initiation rituals. Their drill team marched in a parade down Michigan Avenue. They were the last people to use the Battermann Brick Building in 1933. A wood stove on the third floor overheated and the resulting fire destroyed the interior.