Garfield Avenue

Lowest 2 numbers border on Ridge Ave. farthest west block of Garfield was originally called Holmes St. and changed to Garfield later than 1917 Holmes St. was named for Reverend Mead Holmes who bought the land under Garfield and more from Thomas Garrison. Thomas Garrison presumably named Thomas St. Holmes St. changes its name to Garfield Ave. (the block west of Rockton) in ___________________

Garfield Ave.

Reverend Mead Holmes bought some of Garrison’s land. Land was plotted by 1892 city directory, but access to city later and sale of plots was
held up by Mead’s death (1906) and contested will in court until at least Sept. 1909

Source: 1892 Rockford City Directory

In addition to being a Reverend, Holmes was also an alderman


Source: Rockford Morning Star 9/27/1906





Main St., North, 702

Donovan, Cornelius, laborer, 702 N. Main, W.R. Donovan, Mrs. Mary, res. 702 N. Main, W.R.

Source: 1876 City Directory

Mrs. Mary Donovan, Dennis Donovan

Source: 1880 City Directory

Docter, Christian, coachman, T.D. Robertson, res 702 N Main

Source: 1889-1890 City Directory

Honorable Rufus C. Bailey, Judge of the County Court of Winnebago, Office Court House, res 702 N Main. Harry B. Burpee, furniture, undertaking, & upholstering, res

Source: 1899 City Directory

H.A. Burpee

Source: 1914 City Directory


County Judges

“Judges of Winnebago County 1850 – 1864” by Robert Lindvall

Seldon M. Church was the first Winnebago County Judge, elected in 1849.  He served two 4-year terms

Church’s successor on the County bench was Anson S. Miller

Miller served 8 years on the bench, from 1857 – 1865

Abram S. Van Dyke, a Pecatonica lawyer,  succeeded Judge Miller

Van Dyke served eight years 1865- 1873

Following Van Dyke was Rufus C. Bailey, who held the position for 32 years


County Judge Rufus C. Bailey served for 32 years.
County Judge Rufus C. Bailey served for 32 years.


Source:  Nuggets of History, Spring 1988