A little story about Paloma
If you wish to locate the town of Paloma, IL, using coordinates on a map, it should be easy. Simply triangulate these numbers on your map: 40.022778°N, 91.195278°W. That would give you the exact location of this rural town.
What those coordinates don’t tell you is that Paloma is pretty small town. To put this in context, the town has a population of about 300 people as at 2014. For a town that was founded over 150 years ago, that is a hugely surprising.
Location of Paloma, IL
Paloma, IL, is located almost in the center of Adams County in Honey Creek township in Illinois, USA. If you are traveling on Highway 24 going from East to West, you would find the town almost exactly between Coastburg and Fowler towns.
It is one of 14 unincorporated communities in the county. Driving further westward on route 24 for a few hours would take you to the biggest town in Adams County, Quincy.
History of Paloma, Illinois
The village of Paloma was founded by Daniel W. Gooding. The exact date he founded the town is mired in some confusion. What is known for sure is that around 1837, he moved from Ohio to Quincy County when Quincy had only one brick building.
Later, he moved to Honey Creek where he staked a claim on some track of land in what is now known as Paloma in 1862. He developed this land into a thriving farm and homestead.
Paloma though didn’t start off with that name. It was originally known as Pickleville. This was on account of the fact that large quantities of pickles were shipped to Quincy.
The pickles were shipped using trains that took off from a platform located about one mile West of where Paloma is located presently.
Daniel Gooding is credited with bringing the railroad depot to Paloma. According to the story, he offered to build not just a railroad depot, but also a platform too if the train company agreed to move the platform to his land in Paloma.
A deal was struck. Gooding built the platform and depot as he promised. However, the wife of the train conductor felt Pickleville wasn’t a befitting name for the budding town. She decided to name the community after a small Indian tribe known as the Paloma.
Incidentally, Paloma also stands for dove in Spanish.
The Grain Elevator of Paloma, IL
Thanks to the railroad build by Gooding, the community of Paloma thrived for a while. At one time, the town could boast of several businesses and an active nightlife centered around Euterpe Hall. Saturday nights were the time for farmers in the surrounding areas to let their hair down in the hall.
These days though, pickles are no longer grown and Euterpe Hall is no more. However, the Grain Elevator built to store pickles long ago still stands.
Located in the center of the town, the elevator still stands tall; a monument to a glorious past. It now serves the local farmers for the storage of crops grown in the area. It is one of the most outstanding landmarks in the county.