About This Place
Lena is a village in Stephenson County, Illinois, United States. The population was 2,912 at the 2010 census.
In 1853, a railroad survey by B. Dornblazer determined a course through present-day Lena, IL. Samuel F. Dodds, who owned 80 acres (320,000 m2) of land in the area, purchased an additional tract of 80 acres (320,000 m2) on behalf of the railroad company and grading work was begun. Dodds owned a stone residence which still occupies Lot No. 1 on Lena street, while Dr. F. Voightheld owned a log home (which has subsequently been demolished) near the train depot. At the time, these two buildings made up the extent of the town.
The town was originally shaped as a parallelogram covering twenty-six blocks for a total of 304 housing lots. During the summer of 1853, lots sold rapidly, commanding prices varying from $50 to $150 each. On New Year's Day 1854, track was laid, and railway cars began running between Freeport and Warren. The population began to grow, mostly with English and Irish residents. In 1854, there were about a dozen families in Lena. The public school was operated by Miss S. D. Hyde, Dr. J. R. Chambers was the only other physician in the township, and several local business were operating: