Lat/Long: 41.9833, -89.5667
Polo is located in northern Illinois roughly thirty-five miles southwest of Rockford. Founded in 1853 near the village of Buffalo Grove (formerly known as St. Marion), and on the site of Zenas Applington’s land along the line of the Illinois Central Railroad, its name was formally changed to Polo—after Marco Polo—in January 1856. The Illinois General Assembly incorporated the town that year. By 1859, it had a population of nearly 2,000. It became known for the production of dairy products.
Webster’s New Geographical Dictionary (Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster, 1988), 966; Edward Callary, Place Names of Illinois (Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 2009), 282; Henry R. Boss, Sketches of the History of Ogle County, Ill., and the Early Settlement of the Northwest (Polo, IL: Henry R. Boss, 1859), 54, 67-68.