Utica, Illinois History
The original village of Utica grew along the north bank of the Illinois River near the site of the Indian village Kaskaskia.
However, with the construction of the Illinois-Michigan Canal in the 1830s and the regular river flooding, businesses and residents relocated closer to the new waterway. This area was called North Utica, which is the proper, but little used, name of the present village.
With the completion of the I-M Canal, North Utica began to grow through the exploitation of such natural resources as clay, St. Peter’s sand and hydraulic limestone. Brick making also became an important early industry of North Utica because of valuable clay and sand deposits.
In an effort to preserve some of the history of the town, Utica Township and Country Village Studio has teamed up to create a series of art work highlighting the Legacy of Utica.
Additional history of Utica and the surrounding region can be studied at the Utica Public Library located at Mill and Grove Streets and at the LaSalle County Historical Museum housed in a former I&M Canal warehouse located at Mill & Canal Streets, both in the heart of downtown Utica.