Rarely are completely intact artifacts found during archaeological explorations. It is up to archaeologists and anthropologists to use their knowledge and skill to find the missing pieces in order to tell the rest of the story. This plate fragment was recovered from excavations at New Philadelphia, an African American settlement in western Illinois founded by Free Frank McWhorter, a former slave.
Chief Aptakisic, or Half Day, presented this ceremonial war club to Stephen F. Gale, an early settler, before leaving Chicago with a band of Potawatomi Indians for a reservation in Iowa.
This is a specialty tool used to cut the relief inset for the frame side of a door hinge. It's likely that it originally had a wooden handle.
The Carbuilder was a publication from Pullman-Standard Company for builders of all Pullman-Standard products.
Beautiful silk ribbon with badge, from a member of the Fidelity Lodge No. 54, I.A. of C. W. (International Association of Car Workers), Pullman, IL.
Well before Illinois became a state, Native American tribes (the Sac and Fox) living in the area mined galena ore (lead sulfide), the source of lead. Pioneer settlers also exploited the area’s lead resources, eventually displacing the Native Americans who first mined here. In the 1820s, galena ore became the focus of the first major “mineral rush” in the United States. By the end of the 1820s, the city of Galena rivaled Chicago in size.
The fabled highway, U.S. Route 66, which stretched from Chicago, Illinois, to Santa Monica, California, revolutionized transportation and the relationship Americans had with their cars. Several segments of the original highway can still be found in Illinois. One such section of original pavement was sampled by the Illinois Department of Transportation in Macoupin County, where the old road intersects a new high-speed rail crossing. The pavement core can inform materials engineers about the historic concrete used in its construction and its present condition. It can also help guide preservation and restoration efforts of remaining segments of the historic roadway.
When American forces joined World War I, Kent Hagler of Springfield, Illinois, was desperate to join the military, but a childhood injury prevented him from serving. Undeterred, he joined the American Field Service in France as a volunteer ambulance driver on July 17, 1917. He wore this helmet throughout his time in France.
In 1851, Nikolas Daniel Walter packed all his worldly belongings into this trunk and left Germany with his wife and three small children to settle in Pope County, Illinois.
This iron moldboard plow was brought to LaSalle County from Connecticut by the Smith family in 1834. It was used to break the prairie on the Smith’s farm, twelve miles north of Ottawa.