Kane County History: Geneva's East Side — From Dodson To Dog 'N' Suds

Kane County History: Geneva’s East Side — From Dodson To Dog ‘N’ Suds

  • Editor’s Note: This article is part of a weekly series on Kane County’s amazing history. Today’s article was contributed by Terry Emma, director of the Geneva History Museum. All photos are courtesy of the History Museum.

1928 map of the path of the Chicago, Aurora & Elgin Railroad

Most people think of Geneva’s downtown historic district when talking about the early days. However, the east side of the Fox River is rich in history.

You can learn fun stories about Geneva’s east side history at noon Tuesday, Feb. 11, at the Geneva History Museum, 113 South Third St.

This is one of a series of the museum’s Brown Bag Programs and attendees are encouraged to bring a lunch, cookies and coffee will be provided.

Registration is $5 per person, $3 for museum members and free for museum Settler Donors. Here are just a few stories from the museum’s program.

C.B. Dodson

Christian B. Dodson was one of Geneva’s earliest settlers and in 1834 was given a U.S. Government commission to relocate Native Americans west of the Mississippi. Dodson owned most of the land east of Route 25 and north of Route 38 in Geneva.

He opened a saw mill and trading post, and raised his family here; he was an early pioneer who helped establish Geneva.

The Chicago, Aurora & Elgin Railroad was a prominent and important interurban serving the western suburbs. The rail line went north down Route 25 and then east through this neighborhood behind Oakwood Drive.

Most of the former line now serves as the Illinois Prairie Path.

Street names in this east side neighborhood were first named by number to mimic the west side of the Fox River but were changed in 1912 to avoid confusion.

  • Route 25 was East First Street but was changed to Bennett Street in honor of the Bennett Mill that stood just to the east of the State Street bridge.
  • East Second Street became Howard Street in honor of Leonard Howard, land owner at the time this land was surveyed and platted.
  • East Fourth Street was changed to School Street since it is directly across from Malone Funeral Home, that served as Geneva’s East Side School at the time.

Dog ’n’ Suds opened at the corner of East State and School Streets in 1958.

At the time it was one of the most successful fast-food franchises in the country known for their coney dogs and Texas burgers but best known for the “World’s Creamiest Root Beer.”

The building was purchased by the owner of Munchie P’s and later it was replaced by a larger brick business complex now at 415 East State Street.

Munchie P’s honors the history of Dog ’n’ Suds with a photograph in their entry.

Former Dog ’n’ Suds building at 415 East State Street converted to Munchie P’s.

About The Geneva History Museum

The Geneva History Museum is a non-profit organization with a mission to preserve and share Geneva’s story while inspiring and engaging the community. Donations are appreciated and needed.

Read The Kane County History Series!

Sign Up To KCC E-Newsletter

Edit Form