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#1860s

Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Addison Pancake ‘Deaf Mute’ Photographer, ca. 1869

The Deaf-Mute photographer, 1869.

In 1860, hearing impaired photographer Addison Pancake (1844-1900) operated a studio in downtown Bloomington. He was a graduate of what’s today known as the Illinois School for the Deaf and billed himself as a “deaf mute photographer.”

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

‘Old School’ Public Transportation Twin City Streetcars Date to 1867

Bloomington streetcars, 1867.

The week of September 2, 2015 marked 148th anniversary of the first official run of the Bloomington-Normal streetcar system. It was on September 6, 1867, that the Bloomington & Normal Horse Railway inaugurated its first line, which connected Downtown Bloomington with Uptown Normal. As implied in the system’s original name, the earliest streetcars were pulled by horses. The system was electrified in 1890.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Collection Highlights

Remember the Fallen

monument featuring the names of some 700 Civil War dead from McLean County

Memorial Day is next Monday, May 25. On that day please take time to remember those men and women in uniform who sacrificed their all.

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Written by Tod Eagleton in

McNulta Time Capsule

This wine decanter originally arrived at the McLean County Museum of History as a time capsule.

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Written by Torii Moré in

Photo of the Week, 74: Red, White and Blue in Sepia

Union Army veteran Gilbert Henderson Bates

Union Army veteran Gilbert Henderson Bates sought, in his own eccentric way, to help heal the sectional wounds of fratricidal bloodletting.

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Written by Torii Moré in WGLT McHistory Series

McHistory: Bloomington Copperhead Ostracized For Pro-Slavery Views

An early Bloomington settler and one time friend of Abe Lincoln was also a southern sympathizer.

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Written by Torii Moré in WGLT McHistory Series

McHistory: Civil War Letter Home After Battle

Today's McHistory is about the Civil War Battle of Prairie Grove, Arkansas, which took place December 7th, 1862.

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