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Our History

Pap Tetter a freed slave his wife and 18 children arrived in 1862 after a long and arduous wagon trip from North Carolina. Pap Tetter established in Hopkins Park on 42 acres in the early 1862, when the land was a sparsely populated collection of wetland, prairies and old oak savannas. The Civil War was being fought at the time, and slavery was still an institution in the South.

They settled near the state line, about a mile east of the original village of Hopkins Park, where Sacred Heart stands. There are descents of Pap Tetter still living in Hopkins Park today.

Hopkins Park was a settlement African-Americans pioneers established after moving out of Southern slave states. Some historical documents point to possible settlement by African-Americans in the area around the 1850's. It was said that the area served as a refuge for escaped slaves along the Underground Railroad.

The pioneers found something familiar about the ecosystem that reminded them of their origins, in either the southern states or Africa, which helped them survive.
The Village of Hopkins Park continues to survive, fight, and grow. With a population of around 650 residents to date, the Village of Hopkins Park a home ruled community with potential to have manufacturing, industry, commercial business and other economic development opportunities. Under the Administration of Mayor, Mark Hodges the community has made great strides to see this come to fruition.