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Archive of: 1860s

Saybrook’s last Civil War widow Emma Cook, May 1938

Seen here is 85-year-old Emma Cook, on the porch of her Saybrook home, looking at a portrait of her late husband Riley Cook, a veteran who died in July 1918. Mrs. Cook was the village’s last Civil War widow. She passed away on August 5, 1941.

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.”

‘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.

McNulta Time Capsule

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

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.

McHistory: Bloomington Copperhead Ostracized For Pro-Slavery Views

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

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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