The year after Fox Lake was incorporated, the Ingleside business district along Washington Street was annexed into Fox Lake. The newly incorporated area kept its Ingleside postal addresses. So, even today, that section of Fox Lake retains the Ingleside postal address (ZIP code 60041), as does the remaining unincorporated area served by the Ingleside Post Office.
When the railroad tracks were extended to the Rollins Road/Washington Street site in 1899, it had an immediate impact on Ingleside’s business section, especially since the tracks had not yet reached what is now Fox Lake. The Washington Street businesses initially benefited greatly from the tourist trade.
When the Grant Township Town Hall opened in 1904 on Washington Street, it increased the amount of people traffic in Ingleside’s business section. The Town Hall was a busy place where meetings, movies, dances and parties were regularly conducted. The Town Hall is currently the home of the Fox Lake-Grant Township Area Historic Society Museum.
The business section included Hans Hendrick’s famous General Store, two saloons, a church, a beer distributor, a pool hall, a barbershop, a soda pop factory, a blacksmith shop, a firehouse, a jail, livery stables, a post office, an ice cream parlor and a lumber yard. It was a significant hub of business activity that existed well into the 20th century.
The railroad tracks also prompted the construction of a large icehouse that was used to harvest ice from Duck Lake for storage and delivery to Chicago and local businesses.
The William Klein Blacksmith & Livery building was destroyed in a 1914 fire. It became the site of the first Ingleside fire station.
The extension of the tracks to Fox Lake lessened Ingleside’s tourist traffic, but the major blow was struck when the main highway (eventually called Route 12) bypassed Ingleside by going through Fox Lake. From then on, the Ingleside business district began its long decline.