Markham June 14, 2024
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It is asserted that this area was once a beach around 10,000 years ago. Following eons of geological evolution marked by swamps, marshes, and sloughs, the landscape transitioned into prairies adorned with groves of trees, vibrant flowers, and abundant wildlife.

Markham, situated southwest of the southern extremity of Lake Michigan, served as a pivotal crossroads for early pioneers. In 1816, a treaty was brokered with the Ottawa, Chippewa, and Potawatomi tribes, relinquishing a swath of land extending from a point north of the Chicago River to the mouth of the Calumet River to settlers. One of the two Indian Treaty Boundary Lines, demarcating the southern boundary, was surveyed along a trajectory from the Kankakee River to Lake Michigan. This line persists on official maps, now encompassing a short segment of Interstate 57 near the US 6 interchange northwest of Markham.

The village of Markham was formally incorporated in 1925, boasting a population of fewer than 300 residents. Named in honor of Charles H. Markham, president of the Illinois Central Railroad from 1911 to 1918 and again from 1919 to 1926, the village witnessed a significant population surge in the mid-1930s with the development of the Croissant Park subdivision, catapulting the population from 349 to 1,388. Post-World War II, Markham's population doubled to 2,753 residents by 1950, evolving into a residential haven as inhabitants sought domicile over industry. An airport emerged at 165th Street and Kedzie Avenue, serving as the nearest aviation hub outside of Chicago, positioned close to the current site of the Cook County Sixth Circuit Courthouse. On August 24, 1967, Markham attained city status upon incorporation.

The Lone Pine Tree In 1860, Lawrence Roesner, a German immigrant, traversed to the southern boundary and settled on land nestled in the northwest corner of Markham. Carrying six seedlings from Germany's Black Forest, he planted them along the Indian Boundary Line. This "Lone Pine Tree" was designated as the official city symbol in 1985. Unfortunately, the sole survivor among the six pine trees from the Black Forest, planted in 1860, succumbed in 1986. Subsequently, the Markham City Council allocated funds to procure a replacement tree from the Black Forest, which the Markham Garden Club diligently planted that same year.

The majority of Markham falls under the jurisdiction of Prairie-Hills School District 144, encompassing six elementary schools and Prairie-Hills Junior High School. A segment of Markham lies within the boundaries of Posen-Robbins School District 143½, comprising four elementary schools and Thomas J. Kellar Middle School. Another portion is part of Hazel Crest School District 152.5, comprising two elementary schools and Robert Frost Middle School. The remaining section falls under Harvey School District 152, which consists of five elementary schools and Brooks Middle School.

Bremen High School serves most of Markham, while another segment attends Hillcrest High School, and the rest attends Tinley Park High School within Bremen Community High School District 228. Thornwood High School serves the remainder of the city within Thornton Township High School District 205.