About Stockton

Explore the Eastern Gateway to Jo Daviess County

Considered the eastern gateway to Jo Daviess County, Stockton is a community rich in historic treasures, with a thriving business community. It’s home to the first Kraft Cheese plant and is Illinois’ highest town above sea level.

What creates Stockton’s unique landscape?

Ice Age glaciers came to a halt in Stockton. This in turn led it to be the highest town above sea level in Illinois situated on the eastern border of the Driftless Area. When visitors head west through town along Highway 20, they can enjoy a spectacular panoramic view of the un-glaciated landscape.

When was Kraft Cheese in Stockton, Illinois?

Stockton is the birthplace of the Kraft Corporation, with the first cheese plant opened here by J.L. Kraft in 1914. The building now houses Brewster Cheese, the largest producer of Swiss cheese in the United States. Visit the many historical exhibits on display at the Stockton Heritage Museum.

What type of festivals take place in Stockton?

Annual festivals include the Fourth of July celebration which has arts and crafts vendors, car show, food vendors, beer tent, live entertainment and the popular Lions BBQ chicken, as well as a 3-on-3 basketball tournament and 5K run/walk and the largest fireworks display in the area. A “Fall into Stockton” event is also held in the fall with activities for the kids, music, a beer garden, and more. At Christmas, Stockton holds the annual Christmas Walk the first weekend of December which features horse-drawn wagon rides, visits with Santa, special sales, and many more family fun activities.

What other family-friendly activities does Stockton offer?

While visiting Stockton be sure and check out “Kidstown” the fantastic wooden playground at the elementary school or the Stockton Park and Pool with the fun water slide. Shop downtown at the charming small stores and check out one of the restaurants downtown or at the south edge of town or on U.S. Highway 20. Woodbine Bend is an 18-hole golf course, which features a clubhouse to enjoy a quick snack or beverage. The Stockton Heritage Museum is located downtown with free admission – call to verify open hours. Stockton’s Homecoming Weekend in the Fall is not only a parade, football game and dance; but hosts a Radiothon Event (a fundraiser for the Stockton Education Foundation), and many special activities for the community and returning alumni.

Does Stockton have any historic attractions?

Enjoy a delicious meal at Stella's Café, located in a 1890s building that is on the National Historical Registry and the Stockton Heritage Museum which anchors the historic downtown. Learn more about the businesses and events in Stockton by exploring Stockton Chamber of Commerce and Stockton Strong.

Stockton History

Photo credit: H2W Photography

Photo credit: Amy Laskey