Museum News

Seeds of History

July 13th, 2023

Science and the humanities are often thought of as separate entities and subjects. Still, we at the Museum believe all forms of knowledge are important in understanding and interpreting our world. 

Seeds of History is an ongoing series of interdisciplinary initiatives working to educate the community about the history of ecology and the land of McLean County. From our Native Plants on the Museum Square to our garden plot at the Westside Community Garden, we are working to bring history and environmentalism together to rediscover old lessons on sustainability. 

Please continue reading below to learn more about our ongoing Seeds of History initiatives. 

Victory Gardens

Eighty years after First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt planted her victory garden on the White House lawn, the Museum planted our own, on Roosevelt Street, in the Westside Community Garden (the community garden is located at the corner of N. Roosevelt Ave. and W. Mulberry St. in Bloomington).

To learn more about the history of Victory Gardens, click here. 

We will utilize the vegetables grown in the Museum's victory garden for an upcoming Kimchi Making Workshop hosted at the Museum in partnership with the Illinois Extension on August 29, 2023. For more information on the workshop, please click here. The Museum will donate the remaining produce to the West Bloomington Revitalization Project's Veggie Oasis. 

Community gardens like the Westside Community Garden work to strengthen neighborhoods, protect the environment and the watershed, and address disparities in access to fresh produce in food deserts. For more information on the West Bloomington Revitalization Project, please visit 

Native Plants

Last month, Curator of Digital Humanities Torii More and Director of Marketing Jeff Woodard partnered with local experts to plant native species on the Museum Square. We're excited to see these plants grow and bring pollinators back to downtown Bloomington. We're also developing signage to educate the public on the various species of native plants on the Square. 

Heirloom Recipes

The Museum is collecting heirloom recipes of McLean Countians worthy of preserving. Do you have any to share? If so, please consider filling out the form below.

Click here to access the recipe submission form.

The Education Department will compile recipes to share online and to add to our archives. We are especially interested in recipes that involve ingredients you can grow yourself. Who knows, maybe you'll see us trying some of them on our social media or in a future blog post!

Questions? Contact Maria Mears.

Micaela Harris

Director of Communications

Contact Micaela