The Wheeling Farm Store
The Wheeling Farm Store on the south side of Dundee Road just east of the river was built by Charles F. Balling. He sold vegetables, cider, eggs, and dressed poultry to people from the Wheeling area and the North Shore suburbs.
Marshall Balling told how his father, “had a dream of building a cold storage warehouse on the banks of the river and he made a study of this and found you could get ice from the river in the winter time and store it in your building. Then you could use if for cold refrigeration all summer long, so you could buy produce when it was plentiful, and meat and vegetables.”
He goes on to explain that he built quite a building, and he had a dam put in south of the brewery. In winter they’d hire a crew to cut ice and fill his ice house and those of all the taverns. “That was the only way they could cool their beer and pop and stuff. So he began his operation by buying produce and when people discovered it, they wanted to buy it fresh.
So they bought it before he could really put it into cold storage. People from all along the north shore used to come over here to buy fresh eggs and chickens, ducks, geese, and turkeys at Thanksgiving. And he never did any cold storage business!”
The property eventually was taken over by the Forest Preserve District of Cook County, Illinois.
Wheeling Trivia Quiz
From the Daily Herald - Sunday, February 25, 1990 - Chicago, Illinois
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