Incorporated in 1894, Wheeling's beginnings came as an overnight stop for travelers from Chicago who were headed to the Wisconsin Territory via the overland trail now known as Milwaukee Avenue (Illinois Route 21). The string of inns, taverns and eateries established in the 1830's was the start of what is now Wheeling's renowned Restaurant Row.
Farmers took advantage of the area's fertile soil, and growing overland transportation network. Soon the stage stop community began to export its crops. Wheeling became particularly well known for its landscaping nurseries.
Later, in step with the growth of Metro Chicago, Wheeling emerged as a center for industry and commerce in the 1960's. Manufacturing plants that clustered in Wheeling brought rail transportation (SOO LINE) for the shipping of freight to and from the area. These manufacturers were followed by the development of residential neighborhoods. Commercial development followed the population growth.
The Wheeling Historical Society keeps the history of the community alive for posterity. The Society's Museum is located in Wheeling Park District's Chamber Park, 251 North Wolf Road.