History of Lanark
In The Beginning
D.W. Dame who worked for the Racine and Mississippi railroad ,was looking for a terminus for a depot/town and approached one
Mr. Pitt. He owned land just to the east of Mr. Howell, ½ to 1 mile east of the present day Lanark. Mr. Pitt’s land was not to be chosen being he wanted too much money for the right-of-way for the railroad.
Col. Daniels owned 40 acres in 1861. Dame bought the 40 acres for $925.00 on June 28, 1861, and the site for Lanark was chosen. John Nycum gave another 40 acres plus alternate lots in another 40 in Section 5 of Rock Creek Township. D. W. Dame had been operating under the auspices of the Racine and Mississippi Railroad. Now the land was acquired, and the scene set for the birth of a town on the prairie.
The next item to be settled was the naming of this new place. The capitalist looking to develop this new railhead at first chose Glasgow most likely because of their Irish decent. However, they soon learned that Glasgow was already in use in southern IL, so Lanark, the county/shire of the ancient city of Scotland, was suggested by some of the men holding considerable monetary investment in the project.
Lanark, Scotland, an ancient town (1140 A.D.) with a very rich history. Lanark was once an ancient capital of Scotland where William Wallace lived and became an outlaw to the English in the late 1290’s ( The Oscar winning film ‘Braveheart’ ). It also boasts some of the most beautiful countryside in Scotland, a world heritage village of ‘New Lanark’ – which is credited with being the first Co-operative workforce in the world (names – Robert Owen, David Dale)
These are excerpts from the book “Sesquicentennial Lanark IL 1861-2011”