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January, 2005 February, 2005
March, 2005 April, 2005
May, 2005 June, 2005
September, 2005 October, 2005
November, 2005 December, 2005


January, 2005


JANUARY 12, Wednesday, 5:00 PM BOARD MEETING
Lincoln Library, Carnegie Room South

JANUARY 18, Tuesday, 7:00 PM PROGRAM


Nancy Chapin

At the end of the 19th century there was an explosion of women’s clubs founded across the country. Women’s organizations of that period ranged in purpose and interest from community improvement through enrichment or political action efforts; to self-improvement through book clubs, lecture series and serious study groups. Just why that period in history provided the impetus for the formation of such a wide range of gatherings is in some dispute, but the movement was to foster Women’s Clubs, League of Women Voters, book clubs and a host of other women’s organizations.

In Springfield, in addition to a multitude of other organizations for women, there were at least four literary clubs begun. Two of them, Sunnyside and Anti Rust, are still in existence after 100 years, having made many small changes but having retained the essence of their original purposes.

The speaker has been a member of the Anti Rust Club for over 30 years and her talk will reflect that perspective.



JANUARY 10, Monday 7:00 PM ISGS Membership Meeting
Carnegie Room, Lincoln Library
Dan Dixon will speak on ‘Tombstone Tales, a Pictorial View of Auburn, Ball, Cartwright and Chatham Cemeteries’

NOW UNTIL THE END OF MAY - Museum of Funeral Customs Exhibit on the history of funeral floral pieces and designs, concentrating on the set pieces and interpreting their meanings for honoring the deceased or comforting the bereaved.


Dear Member of Sangamon County Historical Society,

I am writing you on behalf of the 5th Grade teachers at DuBois Elementary School who are looking for mentors to help them with a living history project.

You have to be available Friday mornings for about 11 weeks in a row [see schedule below]. They need reliable people who will be there every time. They need knowledge-able people like you!

Please read the information below and contact Margie Adkins if you are interested

‘Think back to your school days. What do you remember the most? Papers and tests, or projects and field trips? Research has proven what we've all known for a long time--students learn more by doing. That's the reasoning behind our Living History Project. History comes alive when students use their knowledge and imaginations to re-enact history.

Our "Living History" project is about to begin. We will be listening to a series of guest speakers on a variety of topics about life in the 19th century. This is phase one of our project. It gives everyone a little bit of information about a variety of topics. Phase two is when the students form small groups to research one topic in depth. A volunteer will come to mentor each group. Display boards will show what they've learned. Phase three is where history really comes alive! Students will demonstrate what they've learned in "living history" re-enactments. On Tuesday, May 3, we will dress in 19th century costumes and travel to the Lincoln Home Neighborhood to "act out" our topics for classes from Dubois and other area schools. We hope you will come join us for a fun and memorable day!

This project will require a lot of volunteer help. Please check out our help wanted ads to see if there is a job you would like to help us with.
Thank you in advance for your support with this project.’



Each group will meet with a mentor on Fridays from 9:30-11:00 beginning February 18. Mentors are not teachers, but guides They help the students understand the information and take notes. They assist in planning the re-enactments. They help direct practices and the re-enactments. Mentors get to join in on all of the fun!

Hours: Fridays, Feb. 18 through April 22 (except during Spring Break) 9:30-11:00; April 29, 9-11:00; and May 3, 8:30-3:00.

Mentors needed to guide students in these subject areas:

• Lincoln/Douglas Debates
• Early Springfield
• Daily Life in the 19th Century
• Civil War
• Westward Movement (our 1 experienced mentor did this one) Medicine in the 19th Century Underground Railroad Occupations in the 19th Century
• Women's Rights

If interested in serving as a mentor please Contact Margie Adkins

Margie Adkins
Dubois School
Springfield, IL

Thanks for considering being a Mentor for DuBois School

Gene Finke, Park Ranger
Lincoln Home National Historic Site


The Illinois State Historical Society has named our own William Furry as its new Executive Director. The 105-year-old, independent not-for-profit organization named Furry Executive Director on December 4, after an extensive state and regional search.

According to Society President David W. Scott, more than seventy candidates applied for the job and five were interviewed, but Furry’s “energy, demonstrated commitment to growth and advancement of the Society, and his initiatives and experience with our programs and publications made him a clear choice for the job.”

Furry, who joined the Society’s staff as Assistant Director in 2001, will continue to serve as editor of the Society’s Illinois Heritage magazine and as an associate editor of the Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society.


The Studs Terkel Humanities Service Award is presented every other year by the IL Humanities Council (IHC) to those IL citizens who triumph the humanities in their communities. The IHC began the Award program in 1999 and to date, over three hundred Illinoisans have been honored. Mayors from across the state nominate local citizen for this prestigious Award, which is named after Studs Terkel, author, oral historian, and humanities champion.

On November 20, before the start of the IL Symphony Orchestra concert, Carl Volkmann, a past president of the Sangamon County Historical Society, and Karen Lynne Deal, Maestra of the IL Symphony, were presented the Award by Springfield Mayor Tim Davlin.

Kathryn M. Harris, SCHS President, was on stage to represent the IHC, and made an informative explanation of the IHC objectives in making the award. Cullom Davis, also an SCHS member, and Harris have been recipients of the Studs Terkel Humanities Service Award in years past.

Volkmann was nominated not only for his long time service to libraries, but also for his humanities community service that includes the IL Symphony Orchestra, the SCHS, and other organizations.


Job Conger “haunted” the meeting room at Lincoln Library with the words of Vachel Lindsay. Conger, a long time admirer, researcher, and reciter of Vachel Lindsay and his work made Lindsay’s words come alive with rhythm and power. 2004 marks the 125th anniversary of Lindsay’s birth.

Conger began this evening of oral and aural enchantment by reciting “I’ll haunt this town”, one of Lindsay’s lesser-known works. Conger told the audience that Lindsay’s poems incorporated the diversity, passion, and religious zeal and fervor that so influenced his life. Throughout the performance, Conger shared biographical information with the audience, including the well known stories of Lindsay’s tramps across America and some lesser know facts: from his failed attempts to works as an artist in New York City to his short-lived employment in a glass factory. Audience members also received a brochure that “shattered” many of the myths that surround Lindsay’s life.
Conger’s program of recitations included the following poems: “Crickets on a strike”, Lindsay’s first poem, written when he was about eighteen years old; “Queen of Bubbles”; “Nancy Hanks, Mother of Abraham Lincoln”; and “The Santa Fe Trail”. Before reciting “Kansas”, Conger spoke about the importance of the role of rhythm in Lindsay’s work and that his poems are best enjoyed when recited with the rhythm that Lindsay imbued in them. “Kansas” was an excellent example of the rhythm that Lindsay employed in his poetry. “Gaily the troubadour” was almost sung, rather than spoken.

Other recitations were: “Town Dolt”; “On the Building of Springfield”; “Bryan, Bryan, Bryan” and “The Bronco that Wouldn’t Be Broken of Dancing”. “General William Booth Enters into Heaven” was the work that catapulted Lindsay into the poetry and literary limelight in 1913.
Note: Thanks to Kathryn Harris for that report


Mr. & Mrs. George N. Buck
Mr. & Mrs. Gerald Davenport
Mr. & Mrs. Kenneth Davenport, Jr.
Mr. & Mrs. Kirby Davenport
Mr. & Mrs. Patrick Derhake
Ms. Lela E. Espenschied
Daniel Hiler
Mr. & Mrs. John Patrick Hiler, Jr.
Mr. & Mrs. Thomas Hiler
Illinois Historical Survey
Mr. & Mrs. William Irvine
Julia L. Jeffers
Robert and Cheryl Lesch
George C. Michael
Royce and Linda Reed
Susan Smarjesse
Mrs. Charlene M. Vollmer



Thank you for being a member of the SCHS. Members receive this newsletter, full of information about speakers and events like the annual meeting held in June and the October Oak Ridge Cemetery Walk. They also get discounts on publications and trips offered by SCHS. Importantly, membership dues enable the SCHS to preserve our local past and share our history with the community.

We currently have 285 SCHS members. Please encourage friends, family and co-workers to become SCHS members. Or, give a gift of a SCHS membership in someone's name. It takes as little as $17.50 a year, the cost of an individual membership, to help preserve and share Sangamon County's rich history.

Now is an especially interesting time to join SCHS because those who become members from January through June at one level higher than their dues category, remain a member through all of the following year.

The committee and Board are considering the following changes to membership fees, and will bring them to the membership for their approval at a later date.

Family Life ($400 {One time payment
Individual Life ($250)
Family ($25) Non-Profit Organization ($30)
Individual ($17.50)
Do you know someone who might like to learn more about the work of the SCHS? Please contact Robinsons at 522-2500 for literature about SCHS that can be passed on to interested potential members.
Julie Kellner, Chairman


The fiscal year (July 1, 2004) began with about $7,000.00 in the general fund. $5,000 of Life Membership fees collected over the last several years was transferred to the Life Membership account. That account currently holds about $17,000.00. The income from which is to be used to sustain the life memberships when needed; otherwise it will be used for special projects.

The Carroll Hall Fund to benefit the Sangamon Valley Collection currently stands at about $29,700.00, with about $1,600.00 in income available for special needs of the SVC. Earlier this year the Society purchased a computer with a scanner and a DVD for the SVC.

There is about $850.00 in the ‘special project’ account; proceeds from the Cemetery Walk and fall bus tour.

The General fund balance stands at about $4,000.00, which should be sufficient to cover the estimated $3,000.00 expenses anticipated for the next six months of the fiscal year.
Curtis Mann, Chairman


When the Historical Society and the Old State Capitol Foundation sponsored the Centennial Business reception last year, for a variety of reasons, mostly miscommunication, St. Joseph’s Home was omitted from the list. Recently they put out a brochure detailing their 101 years in existence:

In March of 1903. having received a bequest of $17,000.00 towards establishing a home for the aged in Springfield, Bishop Ryan asked Mother Mary Pacifica of the Franciscan Sisters of St. Francis of the Immaculate Conception to establish such a home. She purchased a residence at 5th and Cook Sts. originally owned by Mayor and State Rep. James Cook Conkling, but sold to the Wabash railroad in 1884 and used as an employee hospital.

The home opened in October of 1903. As the Home’s reputation spread, the building became inadequate; first the Sisters gave up their quarters, then the Bishop helped them purchase the adjoining house to the South, the Workman home, to which they constructed a bridge from the original structure.

By 1924 the then overcrowded Home had 62 living in the buildings and twice that many on a waiting list. A large bequest by a resident then enabled the Sisters to purchase Walnut Grove, a 43 acre farm three miles South. Ground was broken in July of 1925, and the new home was designed so that every room would receive some direct sunlight during the day. The adjoining grounds were used to provide meat and vegetables to the residents. In 1945 a chapel was added, in 1955 an additional wing, and in an infirmary in 1967.

The second half of the 20th century saw licensing, an increased need for intermediate care, with a professional nursing staff, rather than the shelter care for which the Home was originally designed. Remodeling and changes were made to accommodate the new direction of care, but to achieve that goal, land was sold off and the holding reduced considerably. During that period a lay board was introduced, and the Home has depended on the generosity of the community in addition to the Coterie of women who had worked to help provision the Home since 1908.

At the time of the move to the ‘farm’ the deed was turned over to the Bishop, and the Home(s) were razed. In its place was built the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, which was dedicated on October 14, 1928.

Comment from Charles Chapin:

I remember well when the Cathedral was built because my father made a contract with Ira Dudley to have 100 wagon loads of dirt from the Cathedral excavation delivered next to our house on Vine Street to fill in a low spot to the East. The dirt was brought in horse drawn wagons, using the alleys to get there. They would arrive and dump their dirt and then return to the excavation which was about two stories deep for the next trip.
I was fortunate that I got to see both ends of the expedition for my grandmother lived in a house where the South end of the Franklin Life building is today, and I could watch the work when I visited her. There was a ramp down into the hole for the horses, where a steam shovel loaded another cubic yard of dirt into the wagon for them to haul out and down the alleys to our neighborhood.


By Curtis Mann

The Chrisman brothers, Isaac Newton and St. Clair, came to New Salem, Illinois in the summer of 1831 to open a store. Storytellers of New Salem’s history have little else to say about the brothers beyond that statement and they serve as mere footnotes in the archival record of the town. Research provides two facts about them; the brothers received a license to retail merchandise in Sangamon County on August 25, 1831 and Isaac N. Chrisman was appointed the postmaster of New Salem on November 24, 1831. Nothing else besides oral tradition exists beyond those points to place the brothers in New Salem. The brothers occupied the building known as the Second Berry-Lincoln store and share a part in the complex history of that commercial site. The failure of their store is the reason often given for the brothers’ departure from New Salem, sometime in early 1832. Some historians portray the Chrismans’ store as being just another enterprise that could not weather the fickle New Salem business climate much like Offutt, Lincoln-Berry and several others who attempted to operate and profit there. Recent inquiries into the Chrisman’s history reveal they probably left New Salem financially intact and prospered elsewhere in the state of Illinois.

The Chrismans were born in Rockingham County, Virginia. Menard county histories back this statement up by noting the brothers were from Virginia. Isaac N. Chrisman, born on February 5, 1801, was the third son and fifth child born to Jacob and Barbara Paulson Chrisman. St. Clair was the youngest sibling of eight children. He was born on November 15, 1809. Nothing is known about their childhood. Some members of the Chrisman family migrated to Madison County, Ohio by the early 1820s. A Madison County history states Isaac N. Chrisman and a partner named Reese Darlington were merchants by 1824 in London, the county seat. Joseph Chrisman, a younger brother, succeeded Darlington in 1826. The history goes on to note that “the Chrismans were prominent business men of London.” Isaac is listed in the 1830 census of Madison County as the head of the household of four males, two between the ages of 5 and 10 and two between the ages of twenty and thirty. The following year Isaac and St. Clair Chrisman traveled to Illinois and settled in New Salem. Their reason for coming to New Salem could be because of a family connection with other residents or word of new settlement reaching back to Ohio. Both Samuel Hill and Henry Sinco, the man who rented the store building to the Chrismans, were known to have been in Ohio prior to their arrival in New Salem.

The Chrismans purchased a quarter section of land on August 25, 1831, the same day they received their license to merchandise. This land, the northeast quarter of section six in township 17 north range 6 west, was located in Menard County south and east of New Salem. The land provides a clue to the Chrisman’s departure from New Salem. They reached an agreement to sell the land to George Miller in March 1832. Miller agreed to pay for the land over a few years and in exchange would receive a deed for it when it was paid off. The Chrismans probably left New Salem in early 1832 but where did they go?
To be continued. . . .

MARK THE DATE: FEBRUARY 25 will be the Gala Fundraiser for the Society with the production of HAVING OUR SAY, THE DELANY SISTERS’ FIRST 100 YEARS, by Emily Mann, adapted from the book Having our Say by Sarah L. and A. Elizabeth Delany with Amy Hill Hearth, based on the lives of Sadie and Bessie Delaney.

Details coming in February Historico! (can anyone guess who Sadie Delany will be?)


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February, 2005

February 9, Wednesday, 5:00 PM BOARD MEETING
Lincoln Library, Carnegie Room South


Hoogland Center for the Arts

5:30 - 6:45 PM Wine & buffet reception
9:30 PM Dessert buffet & reception for our stars!

What would it had been like to have been born and raised in the post Civil War South as African American females? That is exactly what Sadie and Bessie Delany write about very plainly and honestly in their best-selling book of memoirs called Having Our Say, The Delany Sisters' First 100 Years, by Sarah L. and A. Elizabeth Delany with Amy Hill Hearth published in 1993. Their extraordinary account of living during this very vital, but dangerous time includes meeting some of the greatest African Americans of their time, surviving the growing numbers of hate groups, enjoying the splendors of Harlem's Golden Age, living long enough to witness remarkable changes, and getting some measure of satisfaction (and revenge!) for the progress made in civil rights for African Americans.

Emily Mann has adapted the book to a play, which is not only delightful but thought-provoking. Our own Kathryn Harris and Patricia James Davis first performed the play at New Salem in 1999 and are now bringing it to Springfield, for the benefit of the Society.

Please plan to come – and bring your friends – to the Gala Opening and Fundraiser! It promises to be a delightful evening!

Send your reservation to: 308 E. Adams, Springfield, IL 62701. Reserve seats which will be assigned in the order received and picked up on the evening of the Gala.


February 10, Monday 7:00 PM UIS
A screening of the documentary by William Elwood about the development of the Brown case followed by a question and answer session.

For more information, contact Cecilia Stiles Cornell, Associate Professor of History, University of Illinois at Springfield, 217.206.7430 or email ccorn1@uis.edu.

This event is co-sponsored by the History Club at University of Illinois at Springfield.

Saturday, February 12 3:00 PM
Vachel Lindsay Home


National Park Service (Free)
Lincoln Home Visitor’s Center

9:00 AM George L. Painter Lincoln Lecture Series
• Ronald C. White, Jr. Prof. Am. Intellectual and Religious History, San Francisco Theological Seminary
• Edwin C. Bearss, Historian Emeritus,
National Park Service
• Wayne C. Temple, Chief Deputy
Director of the Illinois State Archives
1:00 PM “Lincoln and the Music of the Civil War”
Thomas J. Trimborn, Director MA of Arts in Music Education program, Truman State University

Abraham Lincoln Association
Old State Capitol

1:00 – 4:00 PM Symposium (Free)
• “Redressing Wrongs Already Long Enough Endured: Lincoln and the Executive Power” by Herman Belz
• “Lincoln and Democracy?” by Phil Paludan
• “Lincoln’s Constitutional Legacy” by Daniel A. Farber

7:00 PM Banquet – Renaissance Hotel Ballroom $50.00 per person
“Governor Oglesby and Lincoln’s Death and Burial”
by Mark Plummer

Sponsored by:
Abraham Lincoln Association
Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum
Illinois Historic Preservation Agency












Proposals for individual papers or panels on any aspect of Illinois' history, culture, politics, geography, literature, and archaeology are requested for the Conference on Illinois History. The Conference welcomes submissions from professional and avocational historians, graduate students, and those engaged in the study of Illinois history at libraries, historic sites, museums, and historical societies.

Each proposal should include a summary of the topic and a one-page resume of the participant. The summary should specify the major primary and secondary sources used in the research. Proposals should be for formal, footnoted papers. The deadline for proposals is March 7, 2005. Send proposals to:

Thomas F. Schwartz, State Historian
Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library
112 North Sixth Street
Springfield, IL 62701
Phone 217/782-2118,
Fax 217/558-1574
E-mail : tom_schwartz@ihpa.state.il.us


2005 Illinois History Symposium,
December 2-3, Crowne Plaza hotel

The Illinois State Historical Society invites proposals for papers, presentations, panels, and workshops on any aspect of the state's history. Proposals are welcome from professional historians, students, teachers, amateur researchers, and exhibitors.
Each proposal should include a summary of the topic and a one-page resume of the presenter. The summary should include the primary and secondary sources used in the research. The deadline for Symposium proposals is April 1, 2005. Individuals will be notified of the Symposium Committee's decision in mid-May. Send proposals to:

The Illinois State Historical Society
210 1/2 South Sixth Street, Suite 200,
Springfield, Illinois, 62701
Or via e-mail at: ishseditor@eosinc.com
For more information, call 217-525-2781.


Nancy Chapin covered the historical concept of the women’s literary club movement that may have been as diverse as lecture series, book readings, magazine article discussions or research papers.

The women’s literary club movement seems to have sprung up in the late 19th century out of women’s sudden interest in bettering and redefining themselves.

The first women’s literary club in Springfield was the Shakespeare Club founded by Mrs. John C. Lanphier on March 6, 1887. Robert C. Lanphier, was known as the "Shakespeare baby" because he was the first baby born to any of the group. It was somewhat scandalous to learn he was born while his mother was not only an active member of the group but was serving as its President. Women in that ‘delicate’ condition did not ordinarily participate in social gatherings.

The Sunnyside Circle began in the fall of 1887. In a report authored by Georgia Northrup the Circle took its name from the name of the home of Washington Irving.

Nancy’s discussion of the Anti Rust Club founded by Katie Dresser White in 1894, noted that the Club survives to this day with its origins and purposes intact. As Keeper of the Archives" Nancy has more information about Anti Rust than any of the other clubs. Originally, the club had a ‘Pronunciation Critic’, a position so displeasing it was assigned to the tardiest member. The minutes of the meetings were rarely changed especially after a motion to delete the secretary’s critical adjectives such as "long and tiresome", "flippant review", "bored club members", "gory morning" and "escaping en mass" was voted down.

At one time Anti Rust has sponsored plays, raised money for special purposes, entertained speakers and generally served an important role in the community. Today it continues to reflect the words of its founder: "The Anti Rust Club was the direct result of my desire to study, and keep in touch with current topics, more than I would be apt to do without the incentive of meeting and discussing it with others."
Reported by Mary Larsen



In the January Historico Curtis Mann reported on the Chrisman brothers and their arrival in New Salem in 1831 to open a store and their departure less than a year later when it failed; footnotes in the archival record of the town. Part I ended with the question of where did they go?

Two possible locations are known. A history of DeWitt County, Illinois states an I.N. Chrisman brought in a small stock of goods to the newly formed town of Waynesville located in the northwest corner of the county and placed them in a cabin there in 1832. No other information is provided on this store. Isaac Chrisman later moved to Peoria, Illinois and opened a store there with another brother Jacob. The Chrisman brothers prospered in Peoria. This can be attested to in Isaac Chrisman’s probate. Isaac died on September 3, 1834 in Peoria. He left a wife, Nancy, son Peyton and stepdaughter Nancy Evans. His two brothers, Jacob and St. Clair served as executors of the estate. As the surviving partner in the firm, Jacob St. Clair reported he had collected almost $12,000 by 1837. The firm had about $4,000 in debts which left it with about $8,000 in the black. Isaac’s personal property also attests to the lifestyle he was accustomed to. The Chrisman house was furnished with a bureau, falling leaf table, Windsor chairs, and high post bedsteads. The family dined on china using silver spoons and drank from wine glasses. They also enjoyed the use of a pleasure carriage.

St. Clair Chrisman also prospered in Illinois after leaving New Salem. He is known to have purchased 160 acres in DeWitt County in 1836 and 320 acres in Sangamon County from the estate of Nicholas Sintz in 1839. Abraham Lincoln represented the estate of Sintz. Further research is needed to determine the fate of St. Clair Chrisman. He does not appear in the 1840 census of Illinois and searches of other states reveal nothing as well. His brother Jacob also purchased about 300 acres of land in Tazewell and DeWitt counties from 1834-1837. Jacob Chrisman was possibly married to a Mary Thompson in Morgan County in 1836 and had a daughter the next year. He returned to Madison County, Ohio by 1840 and lived the life of a prosperous farmer.

Nancy Chrisman and Peyton Chrisman also left Illinois by 1837. George Miller was forced to file a lawsuit against the Chrisman family in order to get a deed for his land which he paid for. Abraham Lincoln represented the family in this case and presented information that stated Nancy and Peyton Chrisman were no longer residents of Illinois. Jacob and St. Clair, also named in the lawsuit, were noted as residents of Peoria County. Peyton who was a guardian of his uncle Jacob was given his portion of his father’s estate and remained in Madison County. He made his living as a farmer and died on Easter Sunday in 1877.

While not conclusive, the evidence presented here indicates the Chrisman brothers did not suffer adversely from their experience in New Salem. One could conjecture on a myriad of reasons for their departure from the fledgling town. They obviously found brighter prospects in the expanding Illinois frontier as new towns and opportunities arose.
By Curtis Mann


Regular Members

Cathy Cragoe
Douglas I. Gamble
Virginia Campbell-Taylor
Marion Leach
Joan Lewis
Edith M. Myers
Carolyn Oxtoby
Harriet Steahly
Phyllis G. Summers

Family Members

Howarth and Loretta Bryden
Norman O. Helm and Jessie M. Helm
Mr. & Mrs. Loren L. Lowery
David and Sharon McLaren
Catherine O'Connor and Erik Welch
Justin and Mardell K. Taft

Centennial Business Members

Brown, Hay & Stephens
Bunn Capitol Company
Frye-Williamson Press
Gietl Brothers, Inc.
Kirlin-Egan & Butler Funeral Home
St. Joseph’s Home
R. W. Troxell & Company



In the Jan-Feb, 2005 Illinois Heritage magazine published by The Illinois State Historical Society, there was a report on the problems and questions ‘students in the First Division of the Second Grade of the Ward Schools had to take for admission to the 1st Grade, June 17 and 18th,1869’. Students had to be 12 years old and planning to attend high school.) We have included a sampling of the questions here from each category.(We can assume the grade levels were different then.)

Spelling: (5 of 25) gossiping, lyrical, plagiarism, stucco, vitriol
Arithmetic: (1 of 19) Given the divisor and quotient, how do you find the dividend?
Written arithmetic problems: (1 of 12) What is the difference of longitude between Washington and St. Petersburg, if their difference of time be 7 hours, 9 minutes, and 20 seconds?
History: (1 of 15) Give an account of the Pequod War.
English Grammar: (1 of 16) Of what does Etymology treat?
Correct the following examples: (1 of 4) Our harps we left by Babel’s stream. Parse the italicized words.
Geography: (1 of 12) Name the rivers and chief towns of Illinois.
Mental Arithmetics: (1 of 6) Three fourths of 4 and 6/7 is 5 halves of what number?

Since you most likely knew the answers to these questions, why don’t you join the Illinois State Historical Society and get Heritage magazine so you can try the rest? Just call 525-2781, and they will help you out.

The Sangamon County Historical Society presents:

Having Our Say, the Delany Sisters’ First 100 Years

By Emily Mann, adapted from the book Having Our Say by Sarah L. and A. Elizabeth Delany with Amy Hill Hearth, based on the lives of Sadie and Bessie Delany

Hoogland Center for the Arts
February 25-27, 2005.

On Friday, February 25th there will be a Gala Opening and Fundraising evening with a wine and buffet period beginning at 5:30 PM; the play at 7:00 PM and a dessert reception after the play. Tickets are $50.00 and may be reserved by sending your check to SCHS, 308 E. Adams, Springfield. IL 62701. Seating will be assigned in the order reservations are received

On Saturday, February 26th the performance will be at 7:00 PM

On Sunday, February 27th the performance will be at 4:00 PM.

Tickets for the performances on Saturday and Sunday will be available at the Center for the Arts, 523-2787. Ticket prices: $10.50 and $9.50 for seniors.

Based on the New York Times best-selling book by Sarah and Annie Elizabeth Delany, with assistance from Amy Hill Hearth, Emily Mann’s play adaptation is the story of the two Negro sisters who lived to be more than 100 years old.

The play, set in the sisters’ home in Mt. Vernon, New York, tells the sisters’ life stories and recounts many events in American history. The audience is invited to join the sisters as they prepare to celebrate “Papa’s birthday”, which they joyfully celebrate every year.

Sarah (Sadie), portrayed by Kathryn Harris, and Annie Elizabeth (Bessie), portrayed by Patricia James-Davis, Delany were remarkable women who withstood the stings of racism and sexism in the 20th century and survived and thrived. Despite these racist attitudes, Sadie became the first African American woman to teach domestic science in the New York City school system and Bessie became a very successful dentist, despite the racism and sexism that she experienced at Columbia University in New York.

The Delany Sisters met many influential and talented Americans of their times, including: WEB DuBois, Booker T. Washington, E. Franklin Frazier, James Weldon Johnson, Ethel Waters, Lena Horne, and Walter White.

The lives of the Delany Sisters spanned the years of 1889 until the 1990’s; Bessie passed away in 1995 at the age of 104 and Sadie died at the age of 109 in 1999. Their eyes witnessed many significant events in American history; “Having Our Say” relates these events to the audience.


February 25 Gala Opening & Fundraiser Having Our Say
Hoogland Center for the Arts

February 26-27 Having Our Say (Saturday 7:00 PM; Sundaty 4:00 PM)
Hoogland Center for the Arts

March 15 Robert Pulliam – An Unlikely Hero David Brady
7:00 Lincoln Library, Carnegie Room North

April 26 175th Anniversary of the Founding of the The Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-day Saints
200th Anniversary of the Birth of Joseph Smith, Jr.

Hosted by the Springfield Illinois Stake
Old State Capitol

May 17 To Be Announced

May 21 Black History Bus Tour
Springfield, Jacksonville & Quincy


MARCH, 2005

March 9, Wednesday, 5:00 PM BOARD MEETING
Lincoln Library, Carnegie Room South

March 15, Tuesday, 7:00 PM PROGRAM
Lincoln Library, Carnegie Room North

Robert Pulliam – An Unlikely Hero

David Brady

Robert Pulliam, long known for being the first settler in Sangamon County, has always held a rather revered position in our history. David Brady has found there was another story to be told about Robert Pulliam, however, and it may change your views forever about the virtues of our first settler.

David Brady is a longtime student of Illinois history. He is published on occasion in Divernon’s "Its Place in Time" articles, in the Illinois Times, the ISHS Heritage magazine and the Historico. He enjoys researching frontier Illinois. He has given talks at schools, IHPA and Illinois State Historical Society. He has written a history of Divernon and has ongoing research of the Edwards Trace. This will be his third time as a speaker for the Society.


The Illinois State Historical Society will celebrate Historical Markers Week in Illinois from February 28 to March 6 pursuant to resolutions, sponsored by Senator Frank Watson (SR062) and Rep. Art Turner (HR0103), passed, and posted on the Illinois General Assembly's website at www.ilga.gov. The resolutions officially declare that week as Marker Awareness Week.

You are invited to attend:

March 4 at 10:30 AM Grounds of Springfield High School
Marker to be placed citing Hutchinson Cemetery.
March 3 at 11 PM Old State Capitol
Ceremony marking the anniversary of the decision to move the state government to Springfield from Vandalia.

March 12 at 1:00 PM
Fourth Annual Museum of Funeral Customs Poetry Reading

Professional and amateur poets from around the region are invited to read original or published works in the genres of death and dying, grief and mourning, funerals and burial customs, cemeteries, epitaphs and elegies, funeral directors, and funeral traditions the world over.


April 26th program The Mormon Commemoration

An interesting evening is planned for the Old State Capitol when the Springfield Illinois Stake of the Church of Latter-day Saints commemorates the 175th anniversary of their stake and the 200th anniversary of the birth of Joseph Smith, Jr. The Old State Capitol Choral Group is to perform vocals from Smith’s time followed by an addrness by Bryon Andreasen on the Mormon connection to Lincoln-Era Springfield. After the address there will be a reception, exhibits highlighting the Church resources and ‘candlelight tours’ of the Old State Capitol.

May 21 Spring Bus Tour

This spring’s tour will explore some of the Underground Railroad sites in Quincy and Jacksonville.

Quincy, with its Northern orientation and position on the Mississippi, has a history of supporting freedom. Its citizens are credited with aiding 100s of slaves on their route to freedom and incorporating imaginative ways to ensure their path, with tunnels and fake fire places.

Beginning in the 1830s Jacksonville was a hub of abolitionist activity. The establishment of Illinois College in 1829, founded and largely staffed by New Englanders with anti-slavery views, was seminal to Jacksonville’s role. Not surprisingly the student body also tended to have abolitionist views, and when you then add in a few anti-slavery townspeople like Asa Talcott and Dr. Bezaleel Gillett, you have an unusual community in central Illinois, an area mostly settled by Southerners.

The tour will highlight some of the people and locations that were known to be active in both Quincy and Jacksonville for the Underground Railroad activity.

Mark your calendar now for the tour on May 21. Tour costs will be $30.00 for members, $35.00 for non-members, Details and a sign up form will be in the April Historico.


The publisher of the book, “Illinois State Fair, A 150 Year History” by Edward J. Russo, Melinda Garvert and Curtis Mann, has donated about 15 copies to the Sangamon Valley Collection to sell for the benefit of the Iles House. The bargain price is $20.00. Since the book was believed to be already sold out, this is your last chance to get one, so contact the SVC 753-4900, ext. 234 and reserve yours now!


Following the discovery and donation by Mel Creviston of a log structure under the siding of a building he was razing, Rochester citizens decided to preserve the building, whose history traced to the 1830's. In January 1988, an organizational meeting was held, officers and board members elected -- Carolyn Moore as the first President. Later Presidents include Joe Hill, Ralph Moore, David Ramsey, Robert Fairchild, Robert Church, Dorthy Ross and Justin Taft.

Land for re-building was necessary and fund raising over the years included quilt, antique and craft shows & sales, bake sales, lapel buttons, house tours, quilt raffles, historical quilt project, Rochester afghan, Cemetery Walk, and more. A $50,000 grant was received from the Illinois Historical Preservation Agency.

When winds damaged the "Old Stone House" on Buckhart Road, also circa 1830's, the Mendenhall Family, owners, donated it to the Society, with the stipulation that the stones be removed soon. This meant the log re-building was put on hold.

The Society purchased 3 acres immediately west of the Rochester Park from Stephen Taft. Wymond Stubbs, a Springfield brick mason, contracted to rebuild the Old Stone House. David Grubb is overseer. Many individuals and organizations have contributed to this project.

In October 2003 the cornerstone was set and dedicated by the Grand Officers of the Illinois Masonic Lodge. Work continued in 2004. Plans call for a Grand Opening in 2005.

In 2004, the Society entered into a project with the Cooper Jets 4-H Club, who agreed to plant a large potato patch on the east side of the Stone House, with the first potatoes harvested to be donated to county food pantries. Club members provided all the work for the potatoes, and also wrote regular updates and news articles on the project. The 4-H received a State award for this project, and several hundred pounds of potatoes were donated.

On September 19, 2004, the first annual Potato Festival was held, with many sorts of old- time activities taking place, including horse-drawn buggies and potato plows, and several generations of Rochester folks joined in celebration of one of the staple foods of our country - the lowly, but wonderful POTATO!

Keep your eye on Rochester, for in 2005 the Stone House should be completed and work on the log structure can begin, as a new historical village springs up from the prairie.
Dorthy Ross


The following is an entry from a booklet being written by Curtis Mann about the 19th century breweries located in Springfield, Illinois.

The earliest recorded brewery in Springfield was started about 1840 by James Busher. Busher and his brother John, who emigrated from their native England and settled in Springfield in 1839. The brothers were apparently tanners by trade or at least worked in the leather business. John Busher’s biographical sketch in the 1881 History of Sangamon County states he built a tannery in Springfield in 1842 and a brewery with his brother James in the same year. The brewery was in production by May of 1841. The Bushers made a financial arrangement to build the brewery and the tannery on land owned by speculator Nathaniel Ware and leased it from him. Ware sold a lot of 1.75 acres on which the tannery and brewery stood to James Busher on October 3, 1845 for $300. In 1849 James sold the tannery site to his brother John.

Various qualities of ale and beer were available for purchase at Busher’s establishment which he called the Springfield Brewery. Fresh yeast was also kept on hand at John Busher’s leather store in downtown Springfield. James Busher advertised cash for porter and champagne bottles, in which he no doubt was to bottle his beer for sale.

The Busher brewery operated throughout the 1840s without much notice or advertising in the paper. Corn meal, a sideline product of the brewery’s steam mill, was offered for sale by 1847. A brief note in the paper in 1849 states the brewery was destroyed by a fire on the morning of November 20, 1849. The estimated loss of the brewery was $3,000.

James Busher does not appear in the 1850 census of population for Sangamon County and may have been in England for an extended visit at this time. Busher returned to Springfield and rebuilt his brewery. The buildings on his property are shown on the 1854 city map of Springfield but not identified as a brewery, apparently because of the prohibition law in the city at the time. According to the 1855 city directory Busher was back in business as a brewer and he continued to be listed in city directories until 1860-186 1. An 1857 advertisement announced the formation of James Busher & Company. The new company was a wholesaler of malt liquors, cider, ales and lager beer. These products could be purchased by the barrel or bottle including those imported from the cities of Cleveland, Pittsburgh and Dayton, Ohio. James Busher & Company, a partnership between James Busher and John Busher, lasted only a few months, dissolving in January 1858. John Busher continued on in the wholesale business. He advertised himself as the agent for the Springfield Brewery which offered ale, porter and lager beer for sale along with malt and hops.

A fire apparently destroyed the brewery again in the early 1860s. James Busher was noted in the 1860 census as having $10,000 worth of real estate and $5,000 worth of personal property. However, he died on August 15, 1863 in England leaving an estate valued at only $2,500. Among the estate’s receipts was a note claiming the executor was paid for removing personal property from wreckage of the brewery which had been destroyed in a fire. It is unlikely the fire mentioned in the note was the one that took place in 1849. The brewery was not re-built after the fire in the ‘60s.
Curtis Mann


Life Members: R-Lou and Morton D. Barker, Jr.
Regular members:
Jack & Carol Andrews
Donna M. Dormire
Roger Fickau
Charles & Susan Hammond
Ron & Melinda McDonald
Phillip & Martine Paludan


This year Lincoln’s neighbors will be featured on the Cemetery Walk in October. Anyone interested in helping with the research or script should contact Curtis Mann 753-4900, Ext. 234.

‘THE CARILLON BELLES’ To Celebrate 40th Birthday

The story of “The Carillon Belles” is the story of the Rees Carillon Society… and of the carillon bells in Springfield’s Washington Park that started with the dream of a man named Thomas Rees.
Rees, a one-term state senator and co-owner and publisher for 52 years of the State Register with H. W. Clendenin until his death in 1933, was a prominent citizen of Springfield back in the days when there was no carillon in the city. A well-traveled man, it was his idea that Springfield should have one after seeing many and liking them during his travels in Europe where the carillon began.

Indeed, after his death, Rees’ Will bequeathed $200,000.00 “for the construction, maintenance and operation in one of the parks of the district of a chime of bells or carillon on which melodies and tunes can be played, together with a tower or building to contain and support same, to be known as the ‘Rees Carillon,’ and to be used to educate the public to the beauty, harmony and other benefits of bell music and to teach the art of playing bell music.”

In time, his dream became a reality and the Rees Carillon, located at the highest point in the city’s Washington Park, was built and finally dedicated on June 23, 1962.

The Springfield Park District, owner-operator of the Rees Carillon, was supported in its promotion of the Rees Carillon by the Rees Carillon Society, formed in March 1963, and The Carillon Belles (TCB), formed in 1965.
The story of TCB began when the Society realized the need for an auxiliary force to help it accomplish its job. Mrs. Violet Touch, who had become a member of the Rees Carillon Board and tasked with the job of establishing a membership for the Carillon and to “develop the Carillon,” formed TCB during the Belles’ first meeting on March 12, 1965.

Whatever the Rees Carillon Society wished, TCB made happen. For nearly 40 years, TCB had become the workhorse for the Rees Carillon Society, raising money and soliciting members through their various activities as they promote the Carillon to the public. More than that, they have popularized many Carillon Society activities that have become almost traditional… the International Carillon Festival in June, the Spring Carillon “School Tours” for 3rd graders, the Fall Festival and the Christmas Caroling at the Park, and many more that had varied from year to year. As Mrs. Touch would say it, “All of the above fulfilled the mandate of Thomas Rees…
‘To teach the Culture of Cast Bells to our people.’”

Mrs. Touch, who nurtured The Carillon Belles she founded for 39 years of her life, is going to miss the 40th Anniversary of TCB she loved so much. She passed away on July 16, 2004, only months before the March 12 event. However, while she may not be there with “her girls” in body, she will surely be there in spirit.
Virgilio R. Pilapil, M.D.


Kathryn Harris and Patricia James-Davis were wonderful in their roles as Sadie and Bessie Delany! The two centurion sisters told tales of the trials and successes in their lives as they moved around stiffly (as befitting their age), preparing their annual celebration of ‘Papa’s birthday’. Their depiction of the sisters was a delight! Those attending the Gala on Friday were even able to share some of ‘Papa’s birthday cake’!

We again thank our Centennial businesses: Bunn Capitol, Brown, Hay & Stephes, Frye-Williamson Press, Gietl Brothers, Kirlin-Egan & Butler Funeral Home, Memborial Medical Center, R W Troxell Insurance and St. Joseph’s Home for their underwriting support for this endeavor!


APRIL, 2005

Lincoln Library, Carnegie Room South


Hosted by the Springfield Illinois Stake of
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
In Commemoration of the
Joseph Smith Bicentennial
And the
175th Anniversary of the Founding of
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

6:30-6:55 PM (OSC Rotunda):
Performing vocal numbers from the time period of
Joseph Smith’s America (1830s & 1840s)
7:00-7:50 PM (Hall of Representatives):

Dr. Bryon C. Andreasen

Dr. Andreasen will tell of some of the Mormons who traveled through or who lived in Springfield in the 1830s-40s. In particular, he will discuss Joseph Smith's activities in Springfield, and he will speculate about Abraham Lincoln's relations with Joseph Smith and the Mormons during the Nauvoo years.

Dr. Andreasen is a Research Historian at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum where his duties include serving as the historical consultant to the Looking for Lincoln Heritage Coalition, and editing of the ”Journal of the Abraham Lincoln Association”.

6:30-9:00 PM (ongoing throughout the evening):
• “Candlelight” tours of the Old State Capitol and the Lincoln-Herndon Law offices (site of the Federal Courtroom where Joseph Smith stood trial in January, 1843.)
• Exhibits highlighting LDS Church Family History resources and LDS Church Historic Sites
• Refreshments provided by the Springfield Illinois Stake

Free Parking underneath the Old State Capitol


Museum of Funeral Customs
April 9, 1:00 PM –- Alison Novak of Flora Scape, Springfield, will present Say it With Flowers, a historical discussion of funeral floral pieces and designs and their development and meanings in the American funeral to honor loved ones and comfort the bereaved.

Vachel Lindsay Home
April 9, 3:00 PM –– “Poets in the Parlor” - Nancy Perkins, writer, reading from her work and Vachel's

April 30, 10:00 AM -doors open at 9:30 a.m. “Saturday Mornings at 603” -Nancy Torgerson, Women's Changing Roles as reflected in their Handiwork


The Iles House Foundation has announced their intention to hold the long awaited Grand Opening of the house on September 24, 2005. The Opening has been set for 11:00 AM and the Springfield Municipal Band will be there to set a festive mood.

The Opening will be preceded the evening before by a ‘Soiree’, hosted by Major and Mrs. Iles in their home. The evening will feature food of the 1840s, a blue grass band and will be in honor of Floyd and Winifred Barringer’s contributions to Sangamon County history and preservation.

An exhibit of the Barringer’s collection of early Sangamon County furniture, pottery, decorative arts and other memorabilia will be featured.


ISHS and the SHS History Club placed a marker at the school on March 4 and Curtis Mann gave a talk about the history of the property which is included here for your information:

Since the founding of Springfield in 1821, this tract of land has been primarily used for public purposes. The land was part of a large stand of timber that reached out from Spring Creek and its tributaries to touch upon the prairie, which was located south, and east of here. Pioneer Richard Doggett and his family started a farm here in 1820 on government-owned land. The Doggetts sold their claim to John Taylor, one of the founders of Springfield about 1822. Taylor purchased the land from the federal government in 1824 and began to sell portions of it to a number of individuals.

In 1843 Springfield furniture maker John Hutchinson expanded his undertaking business by purchasing several acres of land in this vicinity to establish a private cemetery. This cemetery was an alternative to the city-owned cemetery located two blocks east on Adams Street. The city cemetery had been established earlier in the 1830s and at times became an eyesore because of neglect. Many of Springfield’s citizens preferred a more dignified burial ground and purchased lots in Hutchinson’s new cemetery.

Hutchinson had come to Springfield in the early 1830s and set up his trade as a furniture maker. Like many furniture makers of the time, Hutchinson built coffins on the side. Several of these furniture makers became undertakers as well, handling the details in the burial of the dead. By 1846 John Hutchinson had established himself on Fifth Street between Monroe and Capital streets. His advertisement from that time noted he was prepared to discharge the last duties “to the dead in a manner that cannot fail to give general satisfaction”. He kept on hand coffins of every size and quality and also provided an excellent hearse, gentle horse and careful driver.

Hutchinson Cemetery was a success. By 1857 the city directory noted the place was like a city of dead with over 1,000 people buried there. The use of the cemetery dwindled after the opening of Oak Ridge Cemetery and the passage of a city ordinance that prohibited further burials in the city and Hutchinson cemeteries. The managers of Oak Ridge Cemetery in 1866 began exchanging their lots with the holders of lots in Hutchinson and most of the bodies were re-interred there. The city of Springfield became the owner of Hutchinson Cemetery. The former cemetery became a playground and picnic field because the city could not sell the site for development as some of the lot owners could not be located. The land became an informal park that was a popular site for people because of its location in the city. In 1909 the ground was turned over to the Springfield Park District, which appropriately named its new acquisition Forest Park for the many trees that remained from the cemetery days. Some of these trees were removed to open up the park. Flower beds were planted, tennis courts and a field house were built. Forrest Park was a popular spot in the summer of 1913 when a heat wave gripped the city. Many area residents came to the park and slept outside as it was considered the coolest spot in the city. In 1915 the Springfield Park District deeded the property to the Springfield School District to be used as the site of the new Springfield High School.

The first Springfield High School was opened in 1857, three years after free public education was made available in Springfield. Prior to that, parents had to pay tuition for their children to attend school. The first of these schools was reported to be located just across the street. The first high school was located in a building south and east of here on Capitol Street just west of Spring Street. It moved the following year into the newly constructed Fourth Ward School on the east side of Springfield. That school is now known as Lincoln School. The High School moved yet again the next year into the old Springfield Academy building on South Fifth Street. This was a former private school started in the 1830s. Ironically this building was located next door to John Hutchinson’s furniture factory. The old Academy building proved to be unsuitable and efforts were made to build a new high school. In 1865 a site was secured on the southeast corner of Fourth and Madison streets and a new school building was constructed for the sum of $65,000. Classes were held there until 1897. Then a precedent of sorts was set with the selection of the site of the old city graveyard on West Adams Street for the new Central High School. The availability of a block of city-owned land proved to be a decisive factor in the selection. The increasing population of the city, which doubled between 1890 and 1910, increased school enrollment and that new building was soon overcrowded.

Construction of the present High School building began in 1915. The land’s past history was brought to the surface during the digging of the foundation when a forgotten grave was opened. The body was removed and re-interred at Oak Ridge. Many of the trees, some over two hundred years old, had to be removed. The new high school was opened in 1917.

John Hutchinson did not live to see his cemetery become the site of a high school. He died in 1890 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania after leaving Springfield 25-years-earlier. His legacy does live on in the city. He sold his undertaking business to Thomas C. Smith whose family continues to operate it as the Boardman-Smith Funeral Chapel.
Curtis Mann

Mr. & Mrs. William A. Irvine.


Make your reservations now for the spring bus tour to Quincy and Jacksonville to view some of the stops on the Underground Railroad. The bus will leave the Stratton Building parking lot at 7:30 AM; make a brief refreshment stop in Griggsville; tour the Eels house (shown below) in Quincy and the Garden Architecture and Design Museum; lunch at O’Grigg’s Irish Pub and Restaurant; tour Woodlawn Farm near Jacksonville and arrive back in Springfield at 5:45 PM. The cost is $30.00 for members and $35.00 for non-members. The bus has handicapped accessible accommodations.
Quincy & Jacksonville
Underground Railroad sites
I am currently a Sangamon County Historical Society Member___ I am joining SCHS herewith ___
Please reserve ___ place(s) on the bus Request handicapped accessible space __

I do not plan to lunch at O’Griggs Irish Pub and Restaurant ___

Enclosed $_______
Member @ $30.00
Non-member@ $35.00 City___________________________________State_______Zipcode____________

Mail to: Sangamon County Historical Society Phone number: ___________________
308 E. Adams
Springfield, IL 62701 (phone: 522-2500)

Many thanks to all who contributed to the success of the "Having Our Say: The Delany Sisters' First One Hundred Years."

Patricia James-Davis and Kathryn Harris
Tracy Shaw and her magnificent voice
Phil Funkenbusch and Susan Larsen
The ‘Crew’
The volunteers all!

And a special thank you again to our Centennial Business underwriters!

Bunn Capitol Company
Butler Funeral Home
Frye-Williamson Press Inc.
Memorial Hospital
Neil Brothers Auto Body and Painting
R. W. Troxell and Company
St. Joseph's Home


Sustaining member:
Cathy Schwartz
Regular members:
Elaine Hoff
Roberta Johantgen
Phil & Thelma Peabody
Roger Ricketts
Michael F. & Paula Ryan
Sandee Sims
Richard Thomas
Ellen M. Whitney


The Board voted at its March meeting to use some of the income from the Carroll Hall fund to purchase for SVC an 8 drawer media cabinet in which the Woodruff film collection that has been purchased from the James Woodruff estate can be stored and to underwrite the digitalization and framing of the 1876 map, restored now thanks to contributions raised a year ago. SVC has additional items of which they are in need:

• Wire shelving & shelves
• 18” Paper cutter
• Metal map case


Dave Brady presented his findings on the nefarious activities of Sangamon County’s here-to-fore respected 1st Anglo settler, Robert Pulliam, with scholarship and humor. He pointed out that markers and plaques have been placed to honor the foresight and achievement of Pulliam, who reputedly built the first cabin in the area along Sugar Creek in 1817, and that his neighbor, Governor Reynolds described Pulliam as having “natural good sense” and as being among the “front rank of businessmen”. The Old Settlers’ Society even held their meeting in 1859 at the site of his cabin to honor him.

With that preamble, Brady preceded to delineate Pulliam’s frequent skirmishes with various courts in at least three counties for assaults, thefts, rape, running a ‘disorderly house’ (house of prostitution), selling liquor with no license, harboring slaves, counterfeiting and multiple debt charges. When Pulliam was not being charged, he seemed to be in court charging others, which was just one of the techniques he used to avoid paying his debts. Brady pointed out that Pulliam cunningly used the legal system to his own advantage with appeals, stays and other delaying tactics very effectively.

According to Brady’s research, Pulliam’s exploits, and court appearances, began almost immediately with his adulthood in 1802 and did not cease until his death, at which time he had 33 creditors to whom he owed over $4,500. One of Pulliam’s weaknesses was gambling, particularly on horse races, and his fortunes from those endeavors seemed to enable him from time to time to purchase land or start new business endeavors, but the inevitable losses seemed to land him right back in court again.

Pulliam was adept at cultivating friendships with those of influence and power, even getting a pardon from Governor Ninian Edwards at one point, but Brady revealed that research showed most of Pulliam’s influential friends were almost as lawless as Brady himself.

Brady ended by speculating that perhaps Pulliam’s biggest fraud was brought to light after his death in 1842, when the question was raised as to whether Pulliam had even been the first white settler in the county or whether Henry Funderburk of Cotton Hill Township had been.

For more information, call 217-525-2781, or visit the Society’s web site at www.historyillinois.org.


Illinois high school students are invited to participate in an essay contest about Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War era.

Essays should be between 1,000 and 1,500 words with an annotated bibliography and suggestions for further reading. The focus of the essay should be on Abraham Lincoln or a significant event in the Civil War period in Illinois. The Illinois high school student whose research paper is selected will be given an award of $1,000, plus a certificate. The deadline for 2005 is May 31.

The winning essay and author will be honored and presented a check at the Banquet of the Illinois History Symposium in December 2005. The winning essay will be published in the January/February issue of Illinois Heritage magazine, the popular history magazine of the Illinois State Historical Society.
The Verna Ross Orndorff Scholarship was established in 1989. A resident of River Forest, Ms. Orndorff was a lifelong student of Illinois history.


The 2005 Illinois History Symposium takes a turn toward the spiritual with the theme Religion and Society. History buffs, teachers, grad students, and professional historians are invited to submit proposals on all aspects of Illinois history, with special consideration given those related to the topic. The symposium will take place December 1-3 in Springfield.

This year the Symposium will again feature recent documentary films and videos about Illinois history. Producers of such ork are welcome to submit samples for consideration.

The deadline for submissions is April 15, 2005. Address all correspondence to the ISHS, 210 S. 6th St., Suite 200, Springfield, IL 62701. Proposals should include a summary of the topic and a one-page resume of the participant. The summary should specify the major sources used in the research. The Society will notify individuals of their selection in June.


The Olive Foster Award was established in 1988 in honor of Olive Foster, former Illinois State Historian, Director of the School Services Program, and originator of the Illinois History Program for students.

The award is designed to recognize and reward full-time teachers for outstanding contributions to the study and teaching of state and local history. Recipients of these awards actively promote Illinois history in schools as well as in their local communities, using the resources of one or more local historical societies, museums, Illinois State Historical Society, and other Illinois historical groups. Documentation of the teacher’s work will be required.
Three $500 awards will be given annually—one each to teachers at the elementary, middle/junior high, and high-school levels. The awards will be presented at the Illinois History Symposium in December.

Nominations may be made by any group or person, including the nominee and should include the following information:

• The nominee’s name and address
• The subject(s) and grade(s) that the nominee teaches
• The nominator’s name and contact information
• The school where the nominee is employed
• The name and contact information of the nominee’s principal
• The nominee’s educational background
• The nominee’s professional experience
• A narrative description of the nominee’s outstanding classroom accomplishments. This should include specific history units taught by the nominee and information about local museums or historical societies that were involved. Commentary on the results or impact of the programs and also how they were developed may be included. Other awards won by the nominee or nominee’s students may also be listed.
• Letters of support or recommendation (optional)

The Society’s Education and Awards Committees will judge all nominations and select the winners. Deadline: July 1, 2005.

Back To Top

MAY, 2005

Lincoln Library, Carnegie Room South

Lincoln Library, Carnegie Room North



Tara McAndrew

Tara McAndrew, the local history columnist for the State Journal-Register, will discuss how she develops ideas for her weekly column, her favorite columns to date, future ideas for columns, and readers' reactions to columns. Future column ideas range from prison reformer Dorothea Dix, who spoke here in 1846, to former Illinois Lt. Governor Pierre Menard, to Springfield's beautification efforts in the 1850s.

Tara, a lifelong Springfieldian, has her master's degree in Public Affairs Reporting and has been a writer for 18 years. She has been published in more than 35 magazines, journals, and newspapers and has produced or helped produce programs for Illinois Public Radio, National Public Radio, Christian Science's former MonitoRadio and the BBC. She has written about the Donner Party, the Springfield Race Riots, Springfield's St. John’s tuberculosis sanatorium, and the Lincolns for a variety of media. One side of her family dates back at least four generations in the Central Illinois area.



May 14, 3:00-4:00 PM Vachel Lindsay House Poet in the Parlor

Dan Guillory, retired Millikin University professor of literature and writing Reading original poetry and selections of Lindsay's writing light refreshments follow program.

May 14, 10:00 AM-4:00 PM, ongoing – Museum of Funeral Customs

John Avery, a licensed funeral director in Missouri, will present a first-person, historical interpretation of a Civil War Undertaker using recreated costume, a refurbished period hearse, and period-correct equipment, to interpret the profession’s early days and embalming’s infancy.


Cleanup day at Pioneer Park at 2:00 PM on May 7. Call Gil Pilapil at 787-8204 to get directions if you can help out, and we need your help!


The 1876 city map for which many of you helped raise money to have repaired two years ago has been awaiting additional money to have the next stage completed: to be digitally photographed and framed with ultraviolet sensitive plexiglas. At its March meeting, the Board voted to use some of the proceeds of the play, Having Our Say, along with some of the income from the Carroll Hall fund to complete the job. The map’s large size of approximately 48” X 60” makes it especially interesting as details can be identified, though expensive to repair and display. The Society is pleased to be able to help complete the restoration.


The Board voted to transfer $2,000 from the Having Our Say proceeds to the Pokorski Publication Fund at its April meeting. Book sales, donations and this transfer have brought the fund up to about $6,500.00. The fund will be used to publish historical material in the future.


The Society’s donation of a scanner to the Sangamon Valley Room last year has created an opportunity to make our website, sancohis.org, even more interesting. With the cooperation of Karen Everingham, our webmaster, we are inviting anyone interested to scan a picture from the SVC collection on a subject they are interested in, to research and write a short explanation or description of the picture, and Karen will put it on the homepage of the website. We are hoping to have a new picture up each month which will be a wonderful addition to the site. Please contact Curtis Mann, 753-4900, Ext 234 if you have a subject in mind to add, and he will try to find a suitable picture, or if you have a special picture, you can take it to the SVC at Lincoln Library, and Curtis will help you scan it into a digital image to which you can then add the description.


Dave Brady’s paper on Robert Pulliam’s shenanigans is now in booklet form and can be purchased at Society meetings, Robinson’s or Prairie Archives.


The Society has been granted permission to reissue James Krohe’s Midnight at Noon, published in 1975 by the Society as part of its Bi-centennial series. The book has long been out of print, and we are grateful to James Krohe for his generosity in allowing us to make additional copies available.


Dr. Vandella Brown
Carol R. Craig


Over 500 people attended the celebration of the 200th Bicentennial of Joseph Smith and 175th anniversary of the Springfield Stake of the Latter-Day Saints at the Old State Capitol. Following a recital of 19th Century songs by the OSC chorale, the evening’s program included a welcome from the Mayor, who was honored with a 5” thick record of the Davlin family history and a talk by Dr. Bryon Andreasen recounting the times that either church founder, Joseph Smith, or leader, Brigham Young, passed through Springfield during the period that Abraham Lincoln was here. He pointed out that Joseph Smith’s first visit, in 1834 while on his way to Missouri, was prior to Lincoln moving to the city from New Salem.

From there Dr. Andreasen detailed the trips by both men involving the political efforts to have the Nauvoo Charter approved by the legislature and finally Joseph Smith’s trial in Federal Court on his expedition to Missouri to face charges there, while Lincoln was trying a case in the State Court across the street. While there were many possible encounters of the Mormons with Lincoln over the period, Andreasen has only found a reference to an actual meeting in an old, romantic novel.

Refreshments were available throughout the evening, and following the presentation tours of both the candlelit Capitol and the Federal Court were available.



Charles W. Adams
Mrs.J. Fred Adams
Ann Allan
Dan W. Bannister
Morton & R-Lou Barker, Jr.
Daniel Monroe Barringer
Mrs.Floyd S. Barringer
Tadd K. Baumann
Joann Bayer
Jay Elliott Bell
Norma G. Bibb
Mrs.Fred C. Blythe
Mr.Edward A. Brooks
John Chapin
Mr.Bradley S. Churchill
Job C. Conger IV
William Hughes Diller Jr.
Mr. and Mrs.John B. Dixon
Frank B. Farley
Barbara H. Farris
Nadine Ferguson
Carol Jean Fraase
F. Sheplor Franke
C. David Franke III
Mr. and Mrs.Carl D. Franke, Jr.
Mr.Donald Hay Funk
Karen Graff
Dr.Donald R. Graham
Perry and Marilyn Hall
Ginger Harmon
Mr.Richard E. Hart
Earl W. Henderson Jr.
Mrs.Patricia Henry
Mr.Frederick B. Hoffmann
Walter Wesley Johnston
Alex J. Jones IV
William S. Klein
Robert C. Lanphier III
Dr.Victor H. Lary
MissMary Frances Lavin
Lincoln Library
Mary Ellen McElligott
Mr. and Mrs.Thomas C. McNichols
Dr.Kriegh P. Moulton
Mrs.Paula S. Myers
Joe Nicoud Jr.
Mrs.Georgia Northrup
Mrs.Thomas D. O’Brien
Victoria O’Brien
Thomas D. Patton
Elena E. Pilapil
Dr.Virgilio R. Pilapil
Priscilla Reyhan
Sarah Robinson
Pauline Roesch
Dorthy Ross
Patricia K. Rudolph
Edward J. Russo
Paul Schanbacher
Mrs.Michael J. Scully
Nanchen and Michael Scully
Don Springer
Dr.Charles A. Starling
Mr. and MrsRobert A. Stuart Jr.
John T. Trutter
Enrique J. Unanue
Mrs.A. D. Van Meter
Mrs.Benjamin Victor
Elizabeth A. Weir
MrsLouise F. Wollan
L. A. Wollan Jr.
Mrs.Harold B. Wright
Mary Jane Wright
Dr.Elvin Zook
Mrs.Sharon Zook


Brown, Hay & Stephens
Bunn Captiol Company
Frye-Williamson Press
Gietl Brothers
Kirlin-Egan & Butler
R.W. Troxell & Company
St. Joseph's Home


Mrs.Walter F. Brissenden
Charles and Nancy Chapin
Mr. and Mrs.G. Cullom Davis
Farrell Gay
Mr. and Mrs.J. Patrick Joyce, Jr.
Bill and Julie Kellner
Logan H. Schlipf
Cathy Schwartz
Carl W. and Roberta E. Volkmann



Stan and Carolyn Adams
Jack and Carol Andrews
Ed and Mary Ann Armstrong
Douglas M. & Pamela Barringer
Judith Barringer & Richard Kerhlikar
Jennie Battles
Charles R. and Patti Boyce
David M. Brady
Howarth and Loretta Bryden
Donald and Joanna Bucci
Mr. & Mrs.George N. Buck
Ross W. and Dorothea Buie
Charles B & Brenda Call, Jr.
Virginia Campbell-Taylor
Mr. and Mrs.Richard Carlson
Mr. & Mrs.Donald Cutler
John and George Anne Daly
Mr. & Mrs.Gerald Davenport
Mr. & Mrs.Kenneth, Jr. Davenport
Mr. & Mrs.Kirby Davenport
Dr. & Mrs.John A. Davidson
Mr. & Mrs.Patrick Derhake
Mr. & Mrs.Robert Dickerman
Mr. & Mrs.Paul Dorocke
Roger Fickau
Stuart and Judith Fliege
C. Don Gamble & Joe Anna Sullivan
Ron and Fran Greenfield
Albert & Marie Ellen Halcli
Dr. and Mrs.Donald Hallmark
Charles & Susan Hammond
Mr. & Mrs.Philip E. Hanna
Dr. & Mrs.Mark E. Hansen
Rev. & Mrs.Charles A. Hanson
Mr. & Mrs.Walter E. Hanson
Norman O. and Jessie M. Helm
Mr. & Mrs.John Patrick, Jr. Hiler
Mr. & Mrs.Thomas Hiler
Mr. & Mrs.John Huther
Bruce and Sue Imig
Mr. & Mrs.William Irvine
Roberta Johantgen
Robert H. Kaige
Oliver J. Keller
Jan T. and Darlene J. Kessinger
Mr. and Mrs.Ronald Knox
Mr. and Mrs.Ronald Krause
Robert H. and Marilyn Kyes
Mr. & Mrs.Robert G. Larson
Mr. & Mrs.Wayne F. Leinicke
Cheryl and Robert Lesch
Joan Lewis
Tony & Ann Libri
Mr. & Mrs.Loren L. Lowery
Mr. & Mrs.Robert Lynn
Mark and Grainne Mahoney
Mr.& Mrs.Curtis Mann
Myron and Shirley Marty
Ron and Melinda McDonald
David & Sharon McLaren
Vicki & Norman Megginson
George C. Michael
Mr. & Mrs.Jay Mogerman
James and Leah Myers
Mr. & Mrs.Robert Narmont
Catherine & Erik Welch O'Connor
Dr.& Mrs.Thomas O'Hern
Carolyn Oxtoby
Phillip & Martine Paludan
Mr. & Mrs.J. W. Patton III
John and Joanne Paul
Phil & Thelma Peabody
Alan R. & Connie Baker Post
James and Rosemary Ransom
Royce & Linda Reed
F. North Ross
James and LuAnn Russell
Michael F. & Paula S. Ryan
Mr. & Mrs.William Sausaman Jr.
David and Virginia Scott
Thomas & Gloria Shanahan
William H. & Bonnie Shannon
James A. Skeeters
Mr. & Mrs.Duane Slater
Mr. & Mrs.Harry Smith II
Harriet Steahly
Justin & Mardell K. Taft
William B. and Julianne R. Thomas
Michael and Debra Thompson
Mr.& Mrs.Timothy J. Townsend
Mr.& Mrs.Donald Tracy
William and Jane Vetter
Richard E. & Mary Ellen Walton
Mr. & Mrs.John Watt III
John and Martha Wolters
Keith R. & Marian L. Wright



Glen H. Alexander
David Barringer
Mary R. Barringer
Alyce E. Beggs
Thomas R. Beynon
Elaine Birtch
Estella P. Booth
Bernadine Kay Boyer
Phillip J. Broughton
Dr. Vandella Brown
Daniel Buck
Norman Ray Buecker
Larry Bussard
Diane Canavan
Robert W. Carmody
Douglas Carr
Bob Cavanagh
Chatham Area Library
Mary L. Cleverdon
James Coble
Alberta Conover
Tom Coulson
Cathy Cragoe
Carol R. Craig
McClernand B. Crawford
Theresa Faith Cummings
Dana-Thomas House
Timothy J. Davlin
Mary Lou Delahunt
Donna M. Dormire
James A. Edstrom
Kim Efird
Ms.Lela E. Espenschied
Karen E. Everingham
Lawrence Eugene Finke
Carol L. Fleck
Kevin Fuhrmann
Minnette Fuhrmann
William Furry
Douglas I. Gamble
Melinda Garvert
Mrs.Raymond H. Georg
Doris Hamel
Kathryn Harris
Liz Beiderbecke Hart
Christopher Heather
Margaret E. Herman
Stanley M. Herrin
Daniel Hiler
Elaine Hoff
Kay V. Hattoon Hofmann
Judith Ann Hollenberg
Brenda June Holmes
Mrs.Joyce Horney
William J. Hosking
Doris Hunter
Jane E. Hurie
IL Historical Survey
IL State Historical Society
Jacqueline D. Jackson
Shirley B. Jacobs
Jerome Jacobson
Julia L. Jeffers
Alice Kaige
Miriam N. Keirs
L. Eileen Kendle
Mike Kienzler
Elizabeth N. Kloppenburg
Mrs.Margot L. Kramer
Tim E. Krell
Karla Krueger

Ronald D. Ladley
Jeanne Lanphier
Mary M. Larson
Marion Leach
Doris J. Leonard
Anthony J. Leone, Jr.
Lincoln Home
Jean Livingstone
Alice E. Martin
Barbara Mason
Mrs. John McKee
John S. Melin
Rita Midden
William S. Minder
Madelyn Morris
David Mourey
Paul R. Mueller
Edith M. Myers
E. George Myers
Byron Nesbitt Jr.
Dr.Larry Nudo
Gerald L. Owens
Mrs. John Patton
Mary L. Paxton
Alice S. Payne
Taylor Pensoneau
Janice Petterchak
Marla M. Pringle
Barbara Jean Reid
Roger R. Ricketts
Orvetta Robinson
Mrs.Philip Langdon Robinson
Rochester Historical Preservation Soc.
John R. Rodenburg
Barbara Roseberry
Mrs. Joyce Sandage
Darlene Schermerhorn
Thomas F. Schwartz
Sally Shuster Sellwood
Dorothy Z. Sheedy
Mary J. Shull
Ruth E. Simmons
Sandee Sims
Dore Skeels
Lynda E. Skinner
Susan Smarjesse
Nicky Stratton
Joyce M. Stuper
Phyllis G. Summers
Lorraine Taylor
Frances M. Telsey
Donald P. Thannen
Richard Thomas
Mary Louise Townsend
Matthew Vernau
Gary Vitale
Charlene M. Vollmer
Susanne Wall
Richard R. Wallin
Ellen M. Whitney
Wynn T. Wilkins
Randall F. Witter
Mrs. Betty Tabor Woods
Katie Spindell


Thanks to Julie Kellner and her membership Committee, the membership numbers are up substantially this year!

Lewis Beck’s gazetteer is the first one of the state of Illinois. It provides a compelling look at our county in its infancy. Beck’s complimentary views of the Sangamon Country likely helped fuel the flurry of migration that did follow. (Reproduced here as found in the Gazetteer.)
David M. Brady


Sangamon County was erected from Bond and Madison in 1821. It is bounded north by the county of Pike, east by Fayette, south and west by the counties of Montgomery, Greene and Pike. Its greatest length is 126 miles; greatest breadth, 75 miles: its area is 5292 square miles.

This county is washed on the west by the Illinois. The Interior is watered by the Sangamo River and its numerous tributaries, and also by several considerable steams emptying into the Illinois above and below.

The county of Sangamon, ever since its first settlement, has been justly esteemed the most desirable tract in the state; and it consequently has been settled with rapidity heretofore unequalled. Previous to 1819, not a white inhabitant was to be found on the waters of the Sangamo; at present the population amounts to near 5000, while not a single acre of the land has yet been brought into market. The Sangamo River, which runs a northeasterly course through the southern part of this county, may at a trifling expense, be made navigable for nearly two hundred miles: it is now obstructed by timber. This stream passes through a tract of the county which is seldom excelled in fertility. It is high and undulating, well watered with creeks and springs, and is beautifully interspersed with timber and prairie, the former of which consist principally of hickory, maple, oak, &c. The prairies frequently contain fine groves of timber, some of which, from their appearance, have received the names of Elk-heart grove, Buffaloe-heart grove, &c. These groves are advantageous situations for settlement. The inhabitants reside on the margin of the timber, extending their plantations to any distance into the prairie. The groves above mentioned already contain a respectable population, from different parts of the United States. During the last session of the legislature, a company was incorporated by the name of the “Sangamo Milling Company”, with a capitol of $20,000. This will be of immense advantage to the inhabitants of this tract.

This county contains a number of salt springs, some of which will prove valuable when the land in the vicinity shall have been surveyed and sold to individuals. Coal is also abundant.

The population of Sangamon county cannot be correctly estimated. It is attached to the first judicial circuit; sends one member to the house of representatives, and one to the senate. Its seat of justice is Springfield.

Brush creek, empties into the Sangamo river from the south, a short distance from Mowaweequa creek. There is considerable settlement on this stream.

Buffaloe heart, a fine settlement of Sangamon county, in a grove so called, situated between Salt creek and Sangamo river, in township 14 north, in range 4 west of the third principal meridian. The grove is 2 miles square, and is surrounded by a large prairie, which is gently undulating, and very fertile. The prairie is also surrounded by timber of the best quality, such as oak, walnut, maple, &c. The settlers reside on the edges of the timber, extending their plantations into the prairie. The grove, which received its name from its resemblance to the buffaloe’s heart, is considerably elevated above the surrounding prairie, and affords the most beautiful situations for farm houses. It already contains a dense population.

Elkheart grove, a fine settlement of Sangamon county, in township 17 north, in five west of the third principal meridian, between Saline creek and the Sangamo river. The grove contains about a thousand acres of the finest timber: it is considerably elevated above the surrounding prairie, and is already thickly settled. The surrounding country, for some distance, is generally interspersed with prairies and woodland; high, undulating, healthy and well watered, and for farming purposes, cannot be excelled.

Keys’ settlement, is situated in Sangamon county. It is 68 miles north of Edwardsville, on
the main road between that place and Fort Clark.

Mowawequa creek, (south fork of the Sangamo) a small stream running a northwesterly course, and emptying into the Sangamo river on the left side, a short distance above Brush creek. On the east fork of this stream, is a rock five feet in height, and twenty-four in circumference, to which the natives pay homage, by depositing on it some tobacco or paint.

Richland creek, a small stream, emptying into the Sangamo river below the south fork. Its course is about north. The country on the banks of this stream is very fertile, and is settling rapidly.

Sangamo river, a large stream in the northern part of the state. It rises near the head waters of the Kaskaskia river, Vermilion of the Wabash, Woman river of the Tippecanoe and Iroquois river of the Illinois, about 70 miles northwest of Fort Harrison, and running a northwesterly course, empties into the Illinois, about 130 miles above its mouth. It is about 150 miles in length, 70 of which are navigable. Its tributaries are Mowawequa or South fork, Brush, Sugar, Spring and Richland creeks from the south, and Salt creek, and several other smaller streams, from the north. The current of the Sangamo is brisk, and the water is clear. The land bordering on it and its tributaries, are uncommonly fertile: the soil being of such nature, that immense crops are raised with very little labor. Emigration to this section of the state has been so great, that it already contains a population of several thousands. On the head waters are several salines, which must become valuable, as the demand for salt increases.

Springfield, a post town, and the seat of justice of Sangamo county, laid out in 1821. It is situated on Spring creek, a branch of the Sangamo river, in township 16 north, in range 5 west of the third principal meridian. Although this place is as yet in its infancy, the circumstance of its being the center of a fertile and thickly-settled district of country, must soon render it of considerable importance.
Springfield is in latitude 59, 50’ north, 96 miles northeast of St. Louis, and 65 northwest of Vandalia.

Sugar creek, runs a northerly course, and empties into the Sangamo river on the left side, a short distance below the forks.


There are still spaces available on the tour to Quincy and Jacksonville to learn about the Underground Railroad sites located there. There will be guided tours at all locations.
I am currently a Sangamon County Historical Society Member ? I am joining SCHS herewith ?
Please reserve ___ place(s) on the bus Request handicapped accessible space __


Enclosed $_______

Phone number: ___________________

Mail to: SCHS, 308 E. Adams, Spring field, IL 62701

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JUNE 2005


Illini Country Club
1601 Illini Road
Springfield, IL

Deadline for reservations is June 17!!!


Speaker: Theresa Faith Cummings, President SCHS 1994-1995

The cost is $25.00. A cash bar will open at 6:00 PM with dinner at 7:00 PM. Prior to the program, the annual meeting will be held to elect Officers and Directors for the coming year and to vote on a change to the Constitution.

There will be a choice of entrée: Chicken Oscar (Boneless breast of chicken, sautéed golden brown and topped with asparagus, crabmeat and béarnaise sauce), OR Shrimp Scampi (5 large Shrimp braised in lemon, butter and garlic), and you are asked to select your preference on the form provided herein.

The traditional drawings for Door Prizes will be held, and tickets may be purchased at the Annual Dinner. Rather than ask everyone to bring a gift, a change has been made:

(In case they draw YOUR name, you want a nice gift!)



Vachel Lindsay Home (free & open to public)

June 11 3:00-4:00 PM Poets in the Parlor
Vachel Lindsay Repertory Group
June 25 9:00-Noon Neighborhood Walk


Tara McAndrews gave a delightful ‘behind the scenes’ look at her creation of local history articles for the paper. She began by disclaiming any background as a historian, having received a Masters in Public Affairs reporting from UIS - not history. However, she had found that she enjoyed writing historical accounts over her eighteen years of free-lancing and accepted the State Journal-Register’s offer to produce weekly historical articles on a free lance basis. The parameters the paper laid out for her were to not use any of Doug Pokorski’s articles for material; to only write of events and people prior to the 1950s; to limit stories geographically to happenings in or reported in and about Springfield; and to hold the length to between 800-1000 words. With some trepidation about following in Doug’s footsteps she set forth to tell a story each week that would both entertain and inform.

She reported that she looked for ideas that would either tell a story from beginning to end or have a ‘twist’ to their ending and has had no problem finding them, either from old newspaper articles and ads or other sources. She noted that pictures were important to her stories as readers react to visual stimulation more quickly than to the written word. Occasionally she has to back off subjects that seem to require more research and writing than her deadlines allow. She confessed to two frustrations: the lack of indexing of old papers as it leads to hours of examining microfilm and to still being puzzled as to the best way to include notations about her sources for those who may want to study the subject further without letting the information break the flow of the story.

She listed several ideas that she has in the incubator at this time, from the prison experience of an abusive stepmother to Illinois’ first Lt. Gov, Pierre Menard. Her favorite stories so far have been those of John Krous, the beer garden king who seems not to be buried in the lot where there is an elaborate monument to him, but in an unmarked grave elsewhere; and the adventures of Clarice Hickox as a Clubmobiler during WW II as chronicled in her letters and papers.

While she has received mostly positive reactions to all of her articles, she admitted that articles about the Lincoln family generate more response and enthusiasm then any other subject. If you haven’t been turning to the back page of Friday’s Heartland section of the paper, you’ve been missing a great read!


The Board has approved the following slate of Officers and Directors to be presented at the Annual Meeting.

President – Dr. Virgilio Pilapil
Vice President – Taylor Pensoneau
Treasurer – Nancy Chapin
Secretary – James Coble

Directors to 2006:
Huges Diller
Kim Efird
Carolyn Moore

Director to 2007:

Mary Jo Potter

Directors to 2008:

Carol Andrews
David Brady
Phyllis Brissenden
Robert Davis
Carolyn Oxtoby


The Society’s Constitution has called for the Board to be composed of twenty-one Directors in addition to the officers and past President. The Board has concluded that this is a larger body than can efficiently direct the Society, and so proposes to the membership that the number of Directors in Article V, Section 1 be changed to fifteen directors. The membership will be asked to vote on this change at the Annual meeting.

In anticipation of this change, the Board voted to change the Board quorum in Bylaw, Article II Section 2 from ten to seven at its May meeting.


Justin A. Blandford
Dr. Vandella Brown
Carol R. Craig
Robert J. & Patricia J. Davis
Mrs. Mary C. Hempstead
Mr. & Mrs. Richard McLane
Telia "Teal" Murphy


The “Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era” invites manuscripts on any aspect of the state's history between roughly 1870 and 1920.

Published by the Society for Historians of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era, this is the only journal specifically devoted to this drama-filled period in Illinois's history. Please contact the editor: Professor Alan Lessoff, Department of History, Illinois State University, Campus Box 4420, Normal, IL 61790-4420, email: ahlesso@ilstu.edu. or go to www.jgape.org.


The Iles House Foundation is raising funds for the ILES 500, and the house restoration continues with a target completion date of early September. So far over $200,000 has been raised or pledged: Union Station Foundation has pledged $40,000 as a matching grant; and an anonymous person has given $100,000 and will give $50,000 in early 2006. Others have pledged or given over $30,000. For now the main focus is raising money – contributions are welcome!

A GRAND OPENING dinner will be the evening of September 23. The next day will be the public GRAND OPENING with ribbon cutting, mayor, speeches, Municipal Band, etc. and the opening to the public of the Barringer Exhibit.

There are no specific plans set for a daily schedule of the House being open. Volunteers will be needed for that! Volunteers would be "docents" for the house and the exhibit. Linda Garvert is preparing a script for the docents. Also we are preparing an exhibit catalog with photos and descriptions of the items in the Barringer exhibit. Cullom Davis is writing a tribute to Floyd Barringer and John Faragher, is writing an overview of early Sangamon County "material culture" or whatever he comes up with. So there will be a catalog for volunteers to learn about the "stuff" in the exhibit. Contact Dick Hart at 753-0055 if you are willing to help out as a volunteer!


Since its inception SCHS has supported the National Park Service’s Symposium in October each year when it has been held in Springfield. This year, in lieu of cash, we have been asked to host a reception at the Lincoln/Herndon Law offices on the evening of October 7th. The Symposium attendees plan a walk from Lincoln’s Home, past the newly opened Iles House to the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum, and would appreciate a ‘watering hole’ on the way. We are hoping it might even be possible to have some of our ‘Cemetery Walk’ characters there in costume to add to the ambiance. More details in the September Historico.


The 9th Annual ‘Walk Through Oak Ridge Cemetery’ will be held on October 9th this year. The characters to be portrayed will be taken from the book, Now They Belong to the Ages; Abraham Lincoln and His Contemporaries in Oak Ridge Cemetery, by Susan Krause, Kelley A. Boston and Daniel W. Stowell, published by IHPA, and just off the press. (‘The neighbors’ will be featured; not Mr. Lincoln himself.) In addition the Society will again be hosting a ‘Historama’ area featuring SCHS recent authors; showcasing historical not-for-profit organizations; providing a ‘Hereafter’ booth to further illuminate the characters portrayed on the walk; a concession; music; and we hope to add some children’s games to the mix.

Carol Andrews, who initiated the Walk in 1997, will be the chairman. She would appreciate all the help she can get, so if you are available, please let her know 546-3859. Even if you are unable to volunteer this year, mark the date on your calendar to attend!


Bishop Hill, the Swedish Colony established in 1846 by Erik Jansson and his followers, and now maintained by IHPA will be the destination of this fall’s bus trip on October 22.

Unlike many religious communes of the period, the community thrived economically. Colonists produced virtually everything that the village needed and marketed fine linen, furniture, wagons, brooms, and farm products. In the period 1848 to 1861 Bishop Hill was the major center of commerce between Rock Island and Peoria, but the Civil War and financial mismanagement brought an end to the experiment in the 1860s.

By the second half of the twentieth century public interest in Bishop Hill's restoration prompted the State of Illinois to declare a portion of the village a state memorial, and the village was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1984.

Save the date – October 22- for a fascinating look at this restored community!


We left Springfield with a packet of materials prepared by the Tour Committee and enjoyed the spring greenery while we traveled in the countryside. At our stop in Griggsville we passed the factory that makes purple martin birdhouses.

In Quincy we visited Dr. Richard Eells’ house. Eells (1799 – 1846), a physician, was a noted abolitionist, who conducted hundreds of escaped slaves on the Underground Railroad in the 1840’s. The friends’ organization plans further restorations.

Also, we toured the Gardner Museum Architecture and Design, formerly the Quincy public library constructed in 1888. The founder of the museum talked about the Underground Railroad sites and other historical building in Quincy, while the executive director spoke on the museum. The museum tells of the architecture of various buildings, especially in Quincy. On the top floor there are several stained glass displays.

Afterwards, we traveled to Jacksonville to see the Woodlawn Farm established in 1824. Michael Huffaker originally had a cabin and built a farmhouse over it. He had free blacks in cabins that worked on the property. This was an important stop on the Underground Railroad, where the escaped slaves could blend with the free black servants. Our tour guide was very knowledgeable about the farm and other Underground Railroad sites in Jacksonville. He answered our many questions. When we were not touring the house, we were looking at the lovely grounds in their spring beauty along with a pond. There are plans to restore the servant cabin and the rest of the farm area to make a living history center.
Kim Efird
Chairman, Tour Committee


Annual Meeting, Banquet and Program June 21th
6:00 PM Cash bar with dinner at 7:00 PM
Ilini Country Club
Springfield, Illinois
Reservation deadline, June 17th

Name(s) ___________________________________________________________

Number of Reservations: Member ___ Non Member Telephone _______________
Note: Non-member spouses/friends of members to pay non-member cost

The cost is $25.00 per member/guest

Please indicate dinner choice: Chicken Oscar____ Shrimp Scampi ______

Make your check payable to: The Sangamon County Historical Society
308 East Adams Street
Springfield, IL 62701

You may write one check and include your SCHS dues for 2005-2006.
To join or renew your membership, simply fill out the form below and mail it along with your membership (If you want to give a gift membership, fill in name, address and telephone number of new member(s); designate (X) in ‘Gift” box; sign your name as Donor; and don’t forget to include that total on your check. A letter announcing the gift will be sent to the recipient including the donor’s name.

Individual - $17.50 Individual life - $250.00
Family - $25.00 Family life - $400.00
Sustaining - $50.00

Name ___________________________________________________
(First) (Middle) (Last)

Address __________________________________________________
Phone _________________Gift donor______________________________

If you would like to volunteer for Society activities, please indicate your interest:____________________

If you would be willing to serve on a committee, please indicate your interest:_______________________

Total enclosed for membership ___________

No. of Dinner reservations _____ Total enclosed for Annual Meeting___________



As most of you probably recall, the Board decided a couple of years ago to divest the Society of Pioneer Park as it has been difficult to maintain free of vandalism and garbage and is not in itself historical. The Illinois Department of Transportation owns the adjoining Sugar Creek covered bridge, and the Robert Pulliam cabin site is off the property to the Northeast. We contacted IDOT who were not interested in owning the park as it does not adjoin a State highway; and we contacted the Department of Natural Resources, who were very interested until their budget was cut back to the point where they felt they could not take it on. Recently we realized that the park is actually surrounded by about three sub-divisions with over 100 homes hidden in the woods and that the village of Chatham has annexed land actually contiguous to the park. When approached, the village Board enthusiastically embraced the idea of incorporating the park into their village park system, and we have now donated the park to them, as you most likely read in the paper this week.

When the Society received the donation of the park in the ‘60s, it was full of junk and weeds. Time and money was invested by many Society members to clean it up, reseed it and make it into the little gem it is today. W. Hughes Diller, Jr. personally maintained the park for many years, and Tim Krell was our volunteer park manager for many others and put in countless hours there. IDOT has spent a great deal of money restoring the bridge itself; installing a fire protection system complete with a cistern; and recently installing surveillance cameras and lights to protect it from vandalism. There is lots of activity around the park today: neighbors walk their dogs (and children) there; tourists from all over seem to find their way from the highway to view the bridge, and Lincoln site tour buses make it part of their route on the week-ends. The Society can be proud of its role in preserving this jewel until such time as the local community was in a position to take it over.

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