Capannari’s Ice Cream

Does MPHS have photographs: No

Address: 10 S. Pine Street

Is building standing: Yes

What is at site: Capannari’s and Moehling Park

When was business founded: 2001. Still operating.

Who owned business: Ken Dix, Katie Dolan Dix, Jim Capannari, and Meg Dolan Capannari

Interesting stories, facts, history:

Capannari’s Ice Cream is located in the building that was the first general store in Mount Prospect. It was a small general store located at the corner of Main Street and Northwest Highway. The store was originally started by Cook County Commissioner Christian Geils. However, Geils soon found out that running a general store was not his calling in life. While Geils was discovering that he did not like running a general store, a man named John Conrad Moehling was in Elk Grove discovering that he did not like farming. In 1882 the two came together and Moehling bought the store. He found that he did enjoy being a store keeper and he soon became an institution in the community. He began selling farm tools, coal, seed, feed, groceries, shoes, etc. and built a warehouse along a side track to help bring in and ship out materials.

John C. Moehling was one of Mount Prospect’s biggest promoters. Throughout his career he worked hard to improve Mount Prospect and bring in new services and businesses. Moehling also convinced the Chicago Northwestern Railroad to build a new Depot in Mount Prospect and was appointed the first depot agent, a position he held from 1887 until 1902. In 1875 he was a charter member of the Mutual County Fire Insurance Company of Mount Prospect, in 1884 he organized the Jefferson Democratic Club, and in 1895 he was one of the founders of the Central School and District 57. Moehling was also appointed the first Postmaster of Mount Prospect on December 31, 1885 and based the local post office in his store. He served as Postmaster for twelve years or until 1897.

The building stayed in John C Moehling’s family for generations. However, by the late 1990s it had fallen into disrepair and its future was unclear. The Village of Mount Prospect was planning to purchase the entire block and demolish the buildings as a part of a downtown re-development plan. Concerned citizens stepped in and with the help of Trustee Paul Hoefert, were able to have the building saved. It was moved to Pine Street and largely through the work of volunteers, was rehabbed and turned into a new business. Capannari’s Ice Cream moved in and began offering homemade gourmet ice cream to the community. Soon Capannari’s Ice Cream was winning awards and the business began offering different programs for the community, including summer movie nights, and tours for elementary students. The success of the business showed the rewards that can be achieved by an active public, an appreciation of history and a responsible business.

 

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