It is generally agreed that the Town of St. John had its beginning when John Hack, a German immigrant farmer and his family arrived in 1837, in the area then known as Western prairie or Prairie West. To fully appreciate that this man and his family came to a wilderness area to start a new life, one must go back a few years prior to this date. The Indiana Territory was organized in 1800 and was admitted to the Union as a state in December of 1816. At that time, the entire Northwestern part of the state was a true American Wilderness, and the area that was to be Lake County was a part of this vast wilderness. It was in 1832, after the peace treaty with the Indians, when the United States purchased this northwestern part of Indiana from the Indians. The first government surveyors arrived in 1834 to survey the area into sections and townships. The population at that time was mostly Indians, although the majority of them were located on the banks of the Kankakee River and the Calumet River. A handful of settlers had cone into the area that is now Crown Point, and a few others had settled at the mouth of the Calumet River in the Brunswick area. In the area of St. John and St. John Township there were no settlers, only a few roving Indians.
In 1883, August Koehle established Spring Hill Grove summer resort where St. John VFW Post 717 is now located on 93rd Ave. The resort encompassed a large picnic grove with a dance pavilion that attracted people from all over Lake County, as well as residents of Chicago who came to St. John by way of the Monon Railroad. The hotel, saloon and six lanes of bowling were added over time, while the dance hall was converted into a roller skating rink prior to the business closing decades later.
10400 West 93rd Avenue, St John, IN 46373