Editor’s note: This column originally ran on June 16, 2018, with an update to the city’s age. June 21, 1853, was a very big day for a very small town. On that day, almost 168 years ago, the voters of Kankakee County chose the infant town of Kankakee Depot as their county seat. At that time, Kankakee Depot existed mostly on paper in the form of a plat map showing 49 blocks laid out in hundreds of building lots. Almost none of those lots contained a building yet (within 18 months, however, the population would grow from a handful of residents to more than 1,000).