The Ella Orendorff Collection consists primarily of newspaper clippings about the Orendorff family who were among the first settlers in this area, coming to Blooming Grove in 1823. There are many clippings about John Lewis Orendorff, born to William and Lovina (Sales) on January 20, 1825. He is considered the first white child born in McLean County (though at that time is was Fayette County). Lovina Orendorff is credited with coming up with the name Blooming Grove after finding Keg’s Grove a distasteful appellation.

Newspaper clippings of more general historical interest tell of the Dawson, Hendrix and Rhodes families, who were among the other settlers.

The remainder of the collection consists of Mary Orendorff’s 1876 diary; memorial cards of a few of the Orendorff and Hale family members and social calling cards.