|Buda is in Section 34 and joins the south line of Concord Township. It is among the neatest and thriftiest |
villages in the county. It is one of the results of the building of the Chicago Burlington & Quincy Railroad through
the county and was laid out in 1854. Prior to that time French Grove post office was a little trade and meeting
point for the people. But the railroad ran south of French Grove and the result was when Buda started up,
French Grove came down. So much was this a railroad town in its inception, it was named by the railroad
authorities after Buda, Hungary. Judge Jesse Emerson laid off on his land the plat of the town. James S. Zink
laid out the land on the west part of town and on which the main or business part of the town is located.
Judge Emmerson made the first important improvements in the place; opened the first store and erected
shops for workmen who desired to locate here, even hiring blacksmiths, including John Shank and putting them
to work on salary, in order to give the town the best possible start in life. He also similarly hired Peter J.
Westervelt, a shoe maker and also a wagon maker named Louis Stety. It was thus, as it has before happened in
the world, that the liberal enterprise of a single individual was the turning point in the history of the new place,
that made this a prosperous town, full of business and business men, while other equally well located places
apparently dwindled and nearly decayed.
The next man to erect a store house and open a store was W. H. Bloom. In 1855 Dr. Noble Holten, a physician
located here. J. B. Stewart & Company erected a large flour mill in 1869 and had a capacity of 100 barrels a day.
But the change in farming and the abandonment of wheat raising in the county has induced them to arrange at
this time (1885) to remove their mill to the wheat growing districts.
The branch railroad known originally as the Buda & Rushville Railroad, was built in 1869. The same year the Buda
Manufacturing Company was organized by James B. Stewart and Capt Ford. It was a joint stock company and the
shops were completed and started August 29, 1871, with Capt Rufus Ford, President and James B. Stewart,
Treasurer. Those parties ran it for two years, first manufacturing reapers and mowers and then producing
cultivators on a royalty and introduced these valuable farm implements into use in this section of the country.
They continued in this line for some time and sold the factory to George F. Chalender & Company, who have
owned and run the works since 1882. In 1881, Mr Chalender, Superintendent of motive power of the Chicago
Burlington & Quincy Railroad, leased the works of Mason & Ford. In 1883 a charter was obtained and the name
changed to Ford & Mason Company, with a paid up capital of $24, 000. This included members W. J. Watson of
Chicago, President and Charles C. Shepherd, Secretary and Treasurer. The business now manufactures railway
and mining supplies, architectural iron works, casting and forging of all kinds in iron and also woodwork. The
works employ an average of forty to fifty men.
In 1855 school was held in house now owned as a residence by Franklin Foster. The teacher was Jacob Miller,
present County Superintendent, who had an attendance of over fifty pupils. Here education was maintained for
the youth of Buda for four or five years when the present fine structure was erected. It will accommodate two
hundred and fifty pupils, with the attendance now (1877) at one hundred eighty four.
Mr. Jasper N. Wilkinson is Superintendent, having four assistants.
Union Church meetings were held at the houses of the persons forming this church prior to its organization in
March of 1858 by Joseph Foster with Elder Chester Covell presiding since its beginning. Services were held in
the school house after March until December of 1858, when the church was built.
The Congregational Church was organized October 17, 1856 with the Rev. Flaval Bascom as preacher and a
church being erected in 1862.
The Baptist Church was formed in 1856 with the Rev. William McDermond, pastor of the church. A church was
built the same year as its founding at a cost of $3,000.
The M. E. Church was organized in 1851 by Joseph Green, class leader and a church was constructed and
dedicated on March 02, 1865.
The Winebrennarian Church or Church of God who are Evangelical in belief were organized around 1868 in Buda
with the first pastor Elder George W. Thompson. Their house of worship was dedicated on December 12, 1875
by Elder A. X. Shoemaker of Chicago, Illinois