Harvey Bostwick Hurd


Harvey B. Hurd was born February 14th, 1828 in Huntington, Fairfield Country, Connecticut as the son of Alanson Hurd and Elizabeth Lowe. He attended Jubilee College in Peoria in 1844, and studied law in the office of Calvin de Wolf, acquiring admittance into the Bar Association in 1848. 


Hurd arrived in Evanston in 1854, bringing with him numerous progressive ideas for reforms and public programs. In 1862 he became a Professor of Law at the Law School of Chicago. One of Hurd’s notable achievements was his plan for a drainage system, which would later lead to the establishment of the Chicago Sanitary District, allowing the creation of the Great Drainage Canal between Lake Michigan and the Mississippi River. 


Hurd was active in social welfare, most notably for his support for troubled youth with the Children’s Aid Society of Chicago and his public stance denouncing slavery. Hurd served as the first President of the Evanson Village Board beginning on January 6, 1864. Harvey B. Hurd would later join the founding board of directors for the Evanston Historical Society, serving as its first President from the society’s establishment in 1898 up until his death in 1906.

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