All the small towns in this area grew to prosperity and dwindled into shadows of themselves at the dictate of the railroad. Populations grew to provide the workers and services needed by major railroad round houses in Wymore and Fairbury. Even little Odell (above, pop 300 give or take) owes its location to the train. Years ago, Odell use to be located nearby but because of a change in the tracks demanded by the railroad, the entire town just picked up, buildings, kids, dogs, the works and moved to their current location.
When the glamour of railroads began to fade away, so too did the small towns. They didn't totally dissappear but they changed. The older folks have memories of busier days, prosperous downtowns and honky tonk nights. Somehow I doubt my own stories of past days will provide nearly the texture of these small towns. Suburbia, automobiles, fast food, television and life before the world wide web just doesn't seem to have the same texture.