Nicholas Scherer, the founder of Schererville, came to the United States in 1846 and settled in St. John.
In 1849, he and his brother Mathias opened a saloon in St. John, which was the first saloon in Lake County.
In 1853, he became a contractor working for the State of Indiana. He was engaged by the railroads to build road beds using horses and wheel scrapers. Later, he was hired by the Panhandle Railroad, which became the Pennsylvania Railroad, to superintend a section of the road from Richmond, Ind., to Chicago. Scherer continued with his varied railroad interests for about 12 years.
In 1865, Scherer and N.D. Wright purchased 70 acres of land from John Redar along the right of way of the soon-to-be-completed Panhandle Railroad. Scherer laid out his village on 40 acres of land divided into 4000 lots and gave it his family name.
The village with the name Schererville was recorded on April 10, 1866, in the township of St. John, County of Lake, in the State of Indiana. At that time, Schererville was home to about 25 families.
Scherer moved to Schererville in 1867 and the house he built still stands at 33 E.Wilhelm St., directly south of the present police station.
Michael Seberger, son of John Seberger, who settled here in 1842, told the following stories about the early days of Schererville
"The Panhandle Railroad was being built through the Seberger farm, south of what was to become Schererville. The railroad wanted to build a depot near the old Sauk Trail, now Joliet Street (Lincoln Highway). The depot had to have a name on it and since Nicholas Scherer owned the land in that area, they decided to use the name Schererville."
That depot stood where the present police department parking lot is today.
Another story Michael Seberger told probably goes back to when his dad first settled here. "His dad had chickens that slept in the trees at night. In the winter, some of the chickens would freeze to death and fall to the ground. In the morning, the Indians would come through the area, pick up the frozen chickens and take them home to eat."
The first town marshal was Michael Steuer, who came to America in 1871. He married Elizabeth Shumacher Reeder, a widow with two sons. Steuer was town marshal from 1911 to 1925. Peter Cope took his place and served for two years.
Peter Redar was hired in 1927 and served as police chief for Schererville until his death in 1964. Phil Spivak took his place and - because the town was growing - additional police officers were added to the department. Among those first officers were William Ellis, Elmer Doctor and Robert Florkiewicz.
The Schererville Fire Department was organized June 15, 1914, and Fred Henderlong was appointed the first fire chief.
On Oct. 23 of that same year, the department was called to fight one of its largest fires at the Jacob Seberger diary barn on Seberger Road. The barn had just been built that year and was completely destroyed.
Seberger managed to save all the cattle and took them to his brother Mike's farm down the road. The barn was rebuilt and it still stands on the same location.
Another large fire broke out on a bitter cold Christmas morning in 1928. The department was summoned to the Turner building in town, but it, too, was completely destroyed. The present town hall is now on the site.