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History & Culture

Bensenville’s history began as a dairy farm community during the days of Illinois 19th century growth. In 1884 the Village of Bensenville was incorporated in response to the need for a local school system. Many place names in the community reflect the Native American heritage that preceded other settlers, and to this day the community retain some of the Potawatomi influences.

As the railroad moved into Bensenville, residential neighborhoods gave way to a downtown business district and eventually one of the largest industrial parks in the state, spurred by O’Hare International Airport growth in the 1950s and 60s. Population increases brought diversity and modern businesses into the community, but Bensenville retained its small-town feel through a strong network of activities for youth, thriving schools and parks, new library and park district facilities, and eventually state-of-the-art elementary school buildings.

The Bensenville Historical Society, in partnership with the Bensenville Community Public Library, owns and operates the Korthauer Living History Museum, an 1844 log house that was built by one of Bensenville’s founding families. Located between the library and the park district facilities, the log house provides living history experiences for school children, scout groups and open house programs throughout the summer months. The Historical Society also maintains a collection of artifacts, photographs and documents, housed at the library.

The Bensenville Arts Council, the first-of-its-kind interagency cultural arts organization, was founded in 1981 and bring arts experiences to all ages in the community. Supported by the Village of Bensenville, Bensenville Park District, Bensenville Community Public Library, Bensenville Elementary School District 2 and Fenton Community High School District 100, the arts council sponsors year-round activities including a Big Band concert, Fun Arts Days, artists-in-residence, preschool entertainment, Fall Fest, Holiday Open House and the Young Musician’s Mentor Band, to name just a few.

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