Deep Roots of the Maytown Parish Go Back Nearly 180 Years
By Louise Brass, Observer Correspondent
April 11, 2019
MAYTOWN—The roots of St. Patrick Parish in Maytown go back almost 180 years, and the founding families planted those roots deep.
This parish was started in 1840, before the Civil War. The first Mass was said in the home of William Dolan, just a few miles from the current church site, at 1336 Maytown Road.  A Vincentian priest, Father Parody, came on horseback to say the Mass.
Almost all settlers who started this parish were of Irish decent.  Grave stones in the nearby cemetery of St. Michael — the original church name — list their counties of origin in Ireland, along with dates of births and deaths.
While the small original log cabin church of St. Michael, about four miles away, is now gone,  a brick sacristy where Mass is offered once a year now stands.  
The “newest” parish church of St. Patrick, with seating for 300, was built in Maytown in 1919 and is notable for many reasons.
The 100-year-old structure stands alone among the cornfields and is an enduring example of “a wonderful Romanesque brick church. It contains both the modesty and resoluteness ... claimed and reborn on the Midwestern frontier,” said Nell Andrzejewski, historian and director of a Catholic tour company.
“The bell tower, enclosed portico, and back sacristy entrance echo the determination not reserved only for a fortress, but also for some of the most noble cathedrals in Europe,” Andrzejewski says.
“The impression the exterior leaves on a visitor is of permanence, presence and order.”
And that may have been what the builders had in mind just a year after the First World War when this church building was erected.
But even the best laid bricks can take on rain water. 
The late Raymond Becker, a longtime parishioner, left money in his will for the repairs to the church’s brick work, said Father Fronek. The much needed work was recently completed.
While St. Patrick in Maytown is sometimes confused with the also historic St. Patrick Parish church in downtown Amboy, he said, and mail is sometime misdirected because Maytown has no zip code, still the two parishes are unique and have garnered the attention of at least one author.
The late Father Anthony Becker, a native of May Township, wrote the book: “The Catholic Church in Maytown, in commemoration of the Centennial of St. Patrick Parish 1976.” 
The book is available in the Dixon Public Library for viewing in-house.