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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Redd-Williams Legion Post McBarnes Building, January 1942

Seen here are Redd-Williams American Legion Post #163 members at the McBarnes Memorial Building on East Grove Street in Bloomington. For much of the 20th century the Twin Cities had segregated Legion posts.

If you can identify any of these unidentified gentlemen, please let us know.

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Written by Bill Kemp in

Franklin Park’s new evergreens April 1958

In the spring of 1958, the Bloomington-Normal Garden Club planted a series of evergreens at Franklin Park, the city’s oldest green space. Seen here is Joyce Lynn Hall, an Illinois Wesleyan University student, admiring three Pfitzer junipers and a vertical yew recently set in the concrete planter at the park’s center.

Note the city bus heading west on Walnut Street in the background.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Easter Lily Sales March 1958

Here’s a group of Y-Teens from the Bloomington YWCA, March 29, 1958, selling Easter lilies in the State Farm Insurance Co. headquarters downtown. The girls are not identified, but that’s Gladys Martin (left) and Betty Moore in the back.


The girls were raising money for the local chapter of the National Society for Crippled Children and Adults.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Pointer and Setter Club Field Trials, April 1946

That’s “Jake,” a pointer puppy owned by “bird dog man” G.S. Bryant of Springfield and handled here by E.T. Burke of Farmersville. Jake was a guest, one might say, of the Bloomington Pointer and Setter Club, which staged its annual spring trials in early April 1946 on club grounds outside of the Village of Downs.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

March of Dimes Coffee Day January 1953

On Friday, Jan. 30, 1953, local restaurants donated proceeds from their coffee sales to the March of Dimes and the campaign to combat infantile paralysis, commonly known as polio. Here is waitress Pauline McGrath pouring coffee for truck drivers (left to right) Mack Rutledge, Gene Dreelan, and “Slick” Evans.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Redd-Williams Legion Post January 1942

Seen here are Redd-Williams post members and auxiliary leaders planning a President’s Birthday Ball for January 30, 1942.

For much of the 20th century the Twin Cities had segregated American Legion posts. Seen here are Redd-Williams post members and auxiliary leaders planning a President’s Birthday Ball for January 30, 1942.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Moose Hunters Bag Rabbits January 23, 1947v

Members of the Bloomington Loyal Order of the Moose staged a rabbit hunt in south-central Illinois, between Pana and Vandalia, in January 1947.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

LeRoy’s CCC Camp August 1934

Aerial photo of LeRoy CCC camps, 1934.

LeRoy was home to a Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) work camp during the Great Depression. Camp LeRoy opened in May 1934, and the unmarried young men stationed there worked on soil erosion control projects.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Bloomington Boys Visit Wrigley Field September 13, 1947

Junior baseball player meets Chicago Cubs player, 1947.

Seen here is local boy Bob Lemme, Bloomington Junior Legion ballplayer, with Cubs right fielder Bill “Swish” Nicholson, one of his favorite players.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Winning Pumpkins Normal Parks & Rec, 1963

Normal Parks & Rec winning pumpkins, 1963.

Gordon Jaeger, Town of Normal parks and recreation director, is shown here in late October 1963 posing with the eight winners in Normal’s pumpkin carving contest.

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