The Village of Hodgkins was incorporated in 1896. Jefferson Hodgkins, the president of Kimball and Cobb Stone Company (the first business to locate in Hodgkins), was the man for whom Hodgkins was named. Modesto Lenzi became the village’s first president that same year. In 1897, Kimball and Cobb Stone Company was sold to Vulcan Matericals, who still owns the local quarry company today.
In the mid-1960’s, the Santa Fe Railroad made available 275 acres of open land for future development in the Village of Hodgkins. Among the many businesses located in the Santa Fe Improvement Park today are DPI Specialty Foods, Pro-Trans Logistics and a large UPS package sorting facility that is the largest of its kind. In 1985, Hodgkins joined with the Village of McCook to create the McCook-Hodgkins Enterprise Zone. The next year, Hodgkins created a Tax Increment Finance District, both of these tools allowed the Village to offer better incentives to new businesses desiring to locate in the Village. Ettleson Buick-Cadillac-Oldsmobile and the Quarry Shopping Center were then constructed. Major anchor stores at the center include Wal-Mart, Sam’s Club, Kohl’s and Target. The Quarry Cinema is also included in the list of Hodgkins businesses, featuring 14 movie screens. By utilizing economic tools, Hodgkins has attracted more than 15,000 jobs in the community.
The population estimate as of 2017 is 1,897. The Village offers outstanding services to its residents. The Village administration and Clerk’s office stress efficiency, courtesy and convenience to the residents. Hodgkins has its own Police Department which keeps the crime rate low while working closely with the community. Hodgkins has a Public Works Department and a Water Department which purchases Lake Michigan water from the Village of McCook. The Hodgkins Park District offers a large community center and schedules a myriad of activities all year long and the Hodgkins Library is a full-service facility.
Hodgkins Elementary dates back to 1921, when the original two-room schoolhouse was built. Since that date, the school has seen additions and renovations. 2021 marks the 100 year anniversary of Hodgkins Elementary. A beloved tradition of the school is the annual Halloween Parade, when the Hodgkins Police Department block off local streets while students showcase their costumes. Recently, the PTO has begun an outside beautification project on the school grounds. There are new brick walkways and planting areas.