Clow-Patterson Farmstead

Naperville, IL

Client: Pulte Homes

Jean supervised Historic Illinois Buildings Survey (HIBS) recordation for the Clow-Patterson Farmstead, a project that was undertaken to mitigate the adverse effects of its demolition, per the Illinois State Agency Historic Resources Preservation Act. The 113-acre site featured numerous resources, including a concrete-block farmhouse, a bungalow, Quonset building, and both wood and metal barns. Jean took representative digital photographs of the buildings, which were included in the HIBS Outline Report, as were current floor plans developed by a colleague using CAD. She researched and wrote a series of contextual essays that focused on the history of Wheatland Township; the significance of the Clow and Patterson families; and a history of the farmstead from the 1870s—the period it was established—until 2019, the year it was razed for a residential subdivision.

The Clow-Patterson Farmstead was significant for its association with John Henry Clow and William D. Patterson, who were members of two pioneering families from Scotland that helped settle Wheatland Township in the 1840s and 1850s, and once owned much of its northeast quadrant. Both were successful farmers, growing wheat, corn and oats, which were Will County’s most prevalent nineteenth-century crops. During the 1940s, the farm was taken over by Frank Dale Hartman—Patterson’s grandson—who once raised nearly 100 Angus feeder cattle on the property. The farm was purchased in the early 1960s by the Richard D. Wagner family, which operated a nursery, raised vegetables for wholesale, and operated a farm stand, thus signifying the shifting nature of agriculture in Wheatland Township, which transitioned from rural to urban starting in the 1970s.