Platted in 1887, Daykin began as a land homesteaded by William E. Ide and sold to John N. Daykin. He sold the land to two Fairbury residents, John Kesterson and George Cross, who began the village of Daykin on June 8, 1887. Attracted by the ideal farming conditions, original residents were of German and Czech ancestry. Initial rail lines paved early success for the community. The first building, Jefferson County Bank, survived the Great Depression and continues to serve citizens today.
Windmills played a large role in the town’s history. Water was provided by windmills from a public well and many private wells and individual windmills. This status was also noted by a feature on “Ripley’s BelieveIt or Not” calling Daykin the “Town of Windmills” because of their popularity. In its heyday in 1910, Daykin had 210 residents much as it does today.