Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Prizes from Years of Lincoln Collecting Went to Auction Last Month

Over Thanksgiving weekend, an Ohio man downsized his extensive Lincoln memorabilia collection.

Eighty-five year old Georg Hoffman of Delaware, Ohio has a collection that includes stacks of old photographs, paintings and other works of art, but the star of his collection is a funeral wreath that lay on the casket of President Abraham Lincoln while he lay in state at the Ohio statehouse in Columbia.

The story is that the town of Piqua, Ohio, held a funeral before the train even arrived. One of the speakers at the service was Dr. Godwin Volney Dorsey, a well-respected area physician and one who was known for his oratory skills.

When Lincoln's casket was placed in the Columbus Statehouse, it was covered by funeral wreaths, one of which was purchased by Dr. Dorsey. Once the funeral train continued its journey, Dorsey reclaimed his wreath and it was passed on within the family for generations until 1975 when George Hoffman's family acquired it.

Dr. Dorsey had the wreath encased in a wooden shadow box frame and the paper backing reads "This Wreath lay upon the Breast of Abraham Lincoln while his body was lying in State at Columbus, O. April 29, 1865." Auctioneers were hoping to get $5,000 to $10,000 for the wreath, but it's been difficult to find published word on what the final purchase price was.

There was a photo of the Statehouse in Columbus taken while Lincoln lay in state there. Whether that's Dr. Dorsey's wreath visible in the picture we don't know. But we happened to have a copy of this photo in our files because of the painting above the coffin.

It depicts Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry leading the Battle of Lake Erie during the War of 1812. Perry was assisted by a group of Ashtabula, Ohio, settlers known as the "old grey men," one of which supposedly was Benjamin Napier. Benjamin was the older brother of Joseph Naper who went on to found the town of Naperville in Illinois and of Amy Naper who was the mother of the main character in Kate's book Ruth by Lake and Prairie. One story has it that the meaty white-shirted oarsman in the picture is actually Benjamin Napier.

Experts at the Put-In-Bay historical museum say that nearly every family with a connection claims to have an ancestor in the painting, so the research is ongoing!

Do-It-Yourself Historical Sites

This sounds like the perfect project for long winter nights! The Illinois Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission offers Build Your Own Lincoln Sites that you can print out on card stock from your own computer, cut out and glue together.

Models include Lincoln's Tomb, his home in Springfield and the store he worked at in New Salem among many others.

One model is of the Old Main building at Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois, one of the sites of the Lincoln-Douglas debates and the only site still standing. Kate knows the building well, having worked there in the college president's office as her campus job during her years attending Knox College.

If anyone actually builds one of these models, please send a photograph and we'll share your artistry with the rest of our readers!

Where History Is Happening

Links to some upcoming events:

From Humble Beginnings: Lincoln's Illinois 1830-1861


Ends Sunday,
January 10, 2010

To celebrate the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial, the Illinois State Museum showcases an original exhibition, From Humble Beginnings, Lincoln's Illinois 1830 - 1861, exploring all aspects of the state that Lincoln called home between 1830 and 1861.

Hinckley Historical Society Show and Share Night

Monday, January 11
7:00 pm until 10:00 pm

Join fellow history buffs at the Hinckley Community Building for a chance to share in a piece of Hinckley history!

Members of the community that have items such as postcards, photos, business premiums, yearbooks, documents, etc., that are part of Hinckley's past are encouraged to bring them to share. The historical society will display some of the items that have been donated. Tables will be set up for displays. You will have an opportunity to share your bit of Hinckley history.

For information, call Kristy Skelly-Sternes at 815-286-3356 or Kris Kestilla-Ohnstad at 815-286-7992.

Michigan Historical Collectibles Show

Saturday, January 23
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Sunday, January 24
9:00 AM - 3:00 PM

2 Day extravaganza with the largest gathering of Historical & Military collectors and enthusiasts in the Midwest. The only show in the world that features under one Roof 200 tables displaying and selling Toy Soldier and Historical Figures, Militaria & Historical Books.
Michigan Historical Collectibles Show offers free tables for the purpose of historical education to
historical groups and clubs, historical museums, living history/re-enacting groups and veterans groups

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Oregon, IL's Black Hawk Statue Now Officially Historic


Long a favorite landmark along the Rock River, the fifty-foot tall statue of Black Hawk was honored with a listing on the National Register of Historic Places by the National Park Service in November. The poured concrete statue was created in 1910 by Lorado Taft, which means it will celebrate it's one hundredth anniversary this coming year. Officials figure almost half a million visitors come to Oregon to see the huge monument in Lowden State Park. Taft operated an artists' colony in Oregon called The Eagle's Nest during the early 1900's where he and his colleagues could think and dream and work. Northern Illinois University continues that vision today at the Lorado Taft Field Campus by providing outdoor education programs. In the picture above is another popular Lorado Taft sculpture known as Eternal Silence. Found in the beautiful Chicago cemetery Graceland, it was commissioned by Henry Graves as a marker for himself, his wife Clementine, his brother Loren and his parents Dexter and Olive Graves. Kate's first book Ruth by Lake and Prairie was based on research prompted by a visit to this statue. If you go around to the back of the black marble block, you will find a large brass plate inscribed: "Erected by Henry Graves, son of Dexter Graves, one of the pioneers of Chicago. Dexter Graves brought the first colony to Chicago consisting of thirteen families arriving here July 15th 1831 from Ashtabula, Ohio on the schooner Telegraph." The "Telegraph" happens to be the ship belonging to Joseph Naper, Ruth's uncle, on which Ruth sailed with her family from her old home in Ashtabula to Chicago. Researching who the other thirteen families might have been led to developing the characters in Ruth by Lake and Prairie. Kate discussed that research in an article published by the DuPage County Genealogical Society. If you are interested in learning more about tracking down these early pioneers, please see "Naperville's Original Thirteen" in the November 2006 edition of The Review. A final note of interest about the Eternal Silence monument: It frequently appears in Chicago ghost story books. Of course it is an impressively creepy image for a book about haunts, but there is also a legend that goes along with the creepiness. Supposedly you should avoid looking under the statue's hood and into his eyes. If you do meet his gaze, they say you will see the manner of your own death!

Dexter Graves' Grave Is a Popular Hang-Out!

Because of Kate's connection to Lorado Taft's monument for Dexter Graves, it was interesting to read about the Black Hawk statue receiving historic landmark recognition.

Coming right on the heels of that news, Kate was interviewed by Scotti Cohn, author of It Happened in Chicago. Coincidentally, Scotti was visiting Chicago to do some research for her newest book and contacted Kate the day after strolling by Dexter Graves' grave.

Graceland Cemetery is a treasure trove of art and history, but the Eternal Silence monument does benefit from being situated very close to the office and parking lot, so you really can't miss it!

If you'd like to read Scotti Cohn's interview with Kate and find out more about Scotti's Chicago books, please see her "It Happened in Chicago" blog.

Where History Is Happening

Links to some upcoming events:

Civil War Symposium

Saturday,
January 23, 2010
10:00 am to 3:00 pm

Midway Village Museum in Rockford hosts an entire day of exploring a variety of topics of America's Civil War period with local historians. Advance registration is required. Cost for the symposium includes lunch. $25.00 per person ($15.00 for members and students). You must make reservations by Wednesday, January 20. See their web site for the list of topics.

Daniel Burnham's Plan of Chicago

Until January 18

Chicago is still celebrating Burnham's 1909 Plan of Chicago and the Art Institute will be closing their exhibit of maps and drawings next month. Daniel "Make No Little Plans" Burnham was also the architect for the 1893 World's Fair portrayed in Erik Larson's book Devil in the White City.
An online version of the exhibition can be viewed at the Art Institute's web site.

C.D. Arnold's Photographs of 1893 Colombian Exhbition


Until Sunday, February, 28, 2010

The Art Institute features highlights from the Ryerson Library's archive of large platinum prints made by the official photographer of the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition also known as the Chicago World's Fair. Nearly half the population of the United States came to the city during its six-month run. Arnold's photographic project, begun two years earlier and completed in 1894, traces the fair's development, particularly the architectural concept put in place by Daniel H. Burnham, who is best known for his 1909 Plan of Chicago.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Lincoln's Bicentennial Winding Down


Abraham Lincoln was born February 9, 1809, and the state of Illinois has been celebrating all year. Lincoln has always generated a lot of interest and will continue to do so, but the festivities for this his bicentennial year have been extra special. Before the birthday candles are completely blown out, here are a few celebrations you may have missed.
  • Get Lincolnized! at the Chicago History Museum web site. Upload a photo of your face and they'll slap a beard and stovepipe hat on it so you'll look just like the President's twin. Silly, but fun. According to The Lincoln Log, Abraham started his political service today as he took his seat as one of 55 members of the Illinois House of Representatives in Vandalia. You can check what he was doing any day of year on this web site.
  • President and Mrs. Lincoln have been seen all over Illinois. Kate's chatted with them herself at least twice at different venues. Max and Donna Daniels have been perfecting their reflection of the Lincolns for years, but they have been especially busy during 2009. If you haven't seen them in person, you can order a video of their most popular presentation "An Evening with Mr. and Mrs. Lincoln" at their web site which is creatively named AbeAndThebBabe.com.

Kate's "Six Degrees of Abraham Lincoln" book and presentation has also had a workout this year, but there are still dates available if your church or community group would like to commemorate Lincoln's 200th birthday with a fun and interesting program. Contact Kate for booking information.

Everything You and Your Child or Grandchild Ever Wanted to Know About Christmas Trees

The University of Illinois Extension offers all sorts of interesting facts to know and places to go on their education web site "Christmas Trees and More."

The page was created for use by teachers in the classroom, but children and their families at home will find much to learn and do as well. Web site links include a virtual Christmas tree farm, holiday history and traditions, and the "Nation's Christmas Tree" in General Grant National Park.

Even if you don't have children to educate and entertain you will enjoy browsing the information available. It will provide you with some great cocktail party conversation at your next holiday event!

Check on the Restoration of a Mansion

In 1992, voters agreed to let the DuPage Forest Preserve District purchase the Mayslake Peabody Estate in Oak Brook, Illinois, and take on its operation and restoration.

The Tudor Revival mansion is huge and beautiful, built in 1921 for F.S. Peabody. Unfortunately, Mr. Peabody died soon after its completion and his surviving family decided not to keep the house.

It was sold in 1924 to the Franciscan Province of the Sacred Heart, a Catholic men's religious community. The Franciscans added a spartan two-story retreat building and turned the living room into a beautiful chapel. The mansion served as a religious retreat up until the Forest Preserve acquired it.

After so many years of hard use, Mayslake was overdue for basic maintenance, let alone restoring it to its 1920's glory. Of course the repair bills have been staggering, but progress is being made. It's actually quite fascinating to see the walls stained and peeling in one room and then see what wonderful refurbishment has taken place in the next.

Classes, performances and programs take place at Mayslake all year round, but if you want to take the Restoration in Progress Tour, there are only two tours left this year: Wednesday, December 2 and Wednesday, December 9. Tours will resume again in late January.

Where History Is Happening

Links to some upcoming events:

Nights of Luminaria


Saturday,
December 19

One of the most beautiful and romantic visions of the year. The streets, steps, and sidewalks of Galena are lined with nearly 5,000 candle-lit luminaries that burn from approximately 6 pm to 9 pm. Locations include: Old Train Depot, along the riverbanks, Park Avenue, Grant Park, Bouthillier Street, footbridge, Post Office, Old Market House, and steps between Main and Prospect Streets.

Postville Courthouse State Historic Site Christmas Open House

Saturday, December 5
12 pm to 4 pm.

The courthouse at 914 Fifth Street, Lincoln, will be decorated in the style of the mid 1800's and its Christmas tree will feature prairie dolls, wooden decorations and grape vines. Tour guides explain the ornaments and how they were crafted in the 1840's. Period music will fill the historic building and Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln impersonators will greet visitors as they arrive. Cake and punch will also be served.

Belvidere Hometown Christmas

Friday, December 4
Saturday, December 5

Horse drawn carriage rides, food, crafts, music, storytellers, and a petting zoo. And if that's not enough there's also a parade, a holiday lights display and "Christmas in the Cabins" at the Conservation District. A full calendar of events is at their web site or in the local paper.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

A Seventy Year Old Surprise


Recently the city of Naperville refurbished a park monument that commemorated the centennial celebration of DuPage County in 1939. When they removed the brass plaque from a large granite boulder, they discovered a compartment hollowed into the stone. Inside the hollow was a sealed metal box. Mayor A. George Pradel, assisted by curators from the Naper Settlement, opened the box in the council chambers in front of a gathering of citizens. Kate was among those who eagerly watched as Mayor Pradel lifted out one historical tidbit after another. While the mayor joked that maybe there might be something in there worth enough to balance next year's city budget, the items were of historical rather than monetary value. Included were newspaper from several DuPage Towns, letters from residents and a couple of coins from the 1830's. The contents are on display at the Naper Settlement Museum until the end of the year but you can also see a list of the items as well as some photos from the opening event at the city's web site.
The Centennial Committee apparently intended to have the time capsule opened in 2039 for DuPage County's Bicentennial, but it was a good thing the workmen stumbled across it early. The box had some water damage and a couple of photos inside were completely destroyed. Who knows if anything would have been left to see in another thirty years? DuPage County was carved out of Cook County in 1838 principally through the political activities of Joseph Naper who founded Naperville in 1831. Tradition has it that Naper and Abraham Lincoln, who was also serving in the Illinois General Assembly at that time, swapped support to help pass their pet proposals. Naper wanted the new county and Lincoln wanted to move the state capital from Vandalia to Springfield. Both men were successful.

Illinois Agricultural History

The Illinois State Museum and the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library recently completed a two-year project that culminated in the Audio-Video Barn web site.

Chock-full of stories and histories of rural life in Illinois, the Audio-Video Barn has so much to browse, you could spend months going through it all. Included is more than 300 hours of interviews with people who farmed our area since the 1950's.

The niftiest part of this web site is how you can search it. Instead of having to listen to all 300 hours, you can search for a particular county, time period or topic and just find clips that have to do with your search term.

There are also lesson plans to help bring this information into the classroom, so get your children or grandchildren to tell their teachers about this fascinating web site. They might get extra credit points!

Let's Hear It for Independent Booksellers!

Local history is often under-represented in bookstores because there just isn't enough money in it for publishers and booksellers. Obviously, the local history market is limited, but of extreme importance to those who live in that location.

Independent booksellers have the freedom to carry local books that your average bookstore chain won't bother with, and for that we local authors are extremely grateful!

Becky Anderson Wilkins is the co-owner of the two Anderson's Bookshops and was just honored with the Heartland Award from from the Great Lakes Independent Booksellers Association.

Becky gave Kate the opportunity to hold her first ever author event at Anderson's right after Ruth by Lake and Prairie was published several years ago, so we couldn't agree more with the Great Lakes Independent Bookseller Association's choice!

To learn more about GLiBA and find a map of independent booksellers near you, see
their website.

Where History Is Happening

Links to some upcoming events:

Candlelight Walk in Oregon

Saturday,
November 28

Luminary candles will light up the town as you and your family enjoy an evening of good old fashioned fun, refreshments, shopping, horse drawn carriage rides, Santa's arrival by fire truck, a festival of trees, Scrooge the comedy, and live musical entertainment in picturesque Oregon, Illinois beginning at 5:00 pm

Christmas on the Prairie in St. Charles

Saturday, December 12
Sunday, December 13

19th century-style holiday cheer will prevail at the 1843 Durant House Museum's Candle-Light Open House from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. each afternoon. Celebrate the season and make-merry while discovering the many charms of local history.

Authentically-costumed docents will welcome visitors into the enchanting, candle-lit prairie homestead adorned in authentic period décor- complete with hot cider and baked treats aplenty; including ginger cakes made from a c. 1840 Illinois recipe.

Christmas and Holiday Traditions at the Ethnic Heritage Museum in Rockford

Saturday, December 5
Sunday, December 6

Decorated Trees and /Displays in each ethnic gallery
Noon to 4:00 p.m. each day.

Local history lives on in this quaint home built in 1850. Here, you will find six fascinating galleries devoted to the primary immigrant groups that settled in southwest Rockford, IL. African-American, Hispanic, Irish, Italian, Lithuanian and Polish.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Even More Winners!

During the school year, Kate speaks to students as an author more often than as an historian. So most of the costuming gets packed away until the summer festival season.

While packing up a couple of weeks ago, Kate discovered a plastic baggie of names that had been collected during the Boone County Pioneer Festival in late September. Apparently they had been carefully protected from the wet weather and never made it into the general pot for the drawing.

Feeling awful that these folks missed the drawing earlier, Kate decided to hold a second drawing and give away yet another family pass to the Naper Settlement Living History Museum. We are proud to announce Loretta as our new winner. Her family pass is in the mail. Congratulations, Loretta!

Abraham Lincoln and Benito Juárez

Last time we mentioned that Mr. and Mrs. Lincoln would be greeting guests at the Chicago History Museum's member night. The presidential couple were quite sociable and pleasant during the event while members enjoyed a special preview of two new exhibits: "Abraham Lincoln Transformed" and "Benito Juárez and the Making of Modern Mexico."

While the Lincoln exhibit was an interesting continuation of their previous exhibit, learning about Juárez was more of an eye-opener. Juárez and Lincoln were both leaders of their countries at similar times in history. Yet being of the "land of Lincoln," we in Illinois know little of Juárez's life.

Kate's first book "Ruth by Lake and Prairie" tells the story of the settling of Naperville, Illinois. Joseph Naper, the founder, served in the Mexican - American War as a quarter master at the same time Juárez was fighting for leadership of his country. Too often we see history from only "our" side, whatever side that may be. It's always enlightening to get a more global view of world history.

If you are in Chicago, both exhibits are worth seeing and are available until April. For more information, see the Chicago History Museum website at
www.ChicagoHistory.org.

Couldn't Happen to a Nicer Historian!

When Kate was writing her first book on local history, she contacted long-time DuPage County historian Leone Schmidt for direction. Leone has written six books, the latest of which was released for Warrenville's 175th anniversary last year.

A curator of the Warrenville Historical Museum and officially named Warrenville's historian in 1977, Leone knows more about DuPage Country than nearly anyone.She was very gracious in looking through her notes when newcomer Kate had questions about DuPage in the 1830's.

Just a couple of weeks ago Leone received the Lifetime Professional Achievement Award from the Illinois Association of Museums. It certainly was an apt award for a truly deserving individual.

Congratulations, Leone!

Where History Is Happening

Links to some upcoming events:

Naper Settlement Time Capsule

November through December

On October 26 Mayor Pradel opened a time capsule that was hidden away in 1939, the anniversary of the creation of DuPage County. The contents are on display until the end of the year

Victorian Christmas at Tinker Swiss Cottage Museum


November 28 - December 23, 2009

Tours of the decorated Cottage will take place at 1, 2 and 3 pm. Holiday music and other events will also take place each weekend.

Depot Museum of Batavia Historical Society

Until Thanksgiving

Mary Todd Lincoln's bedroom furniture from her stay at Bellevue Place Sanitarium are on display in Batavia until Thanksgiving when the museum closes for the season.

Boone County Historical Museum

Free through 2009

Don't forget that the museum's many exhibits are free for your perusal for the remainder of the year.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

A Lovely Afternoon on the Scary Prairie


The author event at Centuries and Sleuths Bookstore in Forest Park was great fun on Sunday! Kate paired up with Norm Cowie for a Scary Prairie afternoon for young people.

Norm's latest book is "Fang Face" about a girl vampire who grouses "as if being a teenager doesn't suck enough!" To celebrate his book launch, Norm wore a cape and fangs and supplied a punchbowl of "blood" for visitors, providing the "Scary" part of the event.

Kate donned her pioneer woman's costume one more time to illustrate the "Prairie" part, adding orange and black cookies to the refreshment table.

While the previous week's weather was suitably gloomy for a Halloween party, Sunday was gloriously sunny and hardly fitting for scary prairie book readings. In fact Kate and Norm couldn't resist standing outside in the sunshine to talk with book fans. And we thought vampires couldn't stand daylight!

Many, many thanks to Augie Aleksy and the rest of the Centuries and Sleuth's staff for a great afternoon! If you are interested in history or mystery, this shop is a must-visit destination. The cozy decor, grinning gargoyles and Sherlock Holmes pipes are the perfect accompaniment to shelves of awesome books. Find out more at their website www.CenturiesAndSleuths.com.

An Evening with President and Mrs. Lincoln

Tonight President and Mrs. Lincoln will be welcoming Chicago History Museum members to a special viewing of a new exhibit called "Abraham Lincoln Transformed." At least, that's what the invitation said!

One of several Lincoln exhibits during this bicentennial year, "Abraham Lincoln Transformed" illustrates how Lincoln changed his mind about slavery from the moderate viewpoint of his early legal career to issuing the Emancipation Proclamation.

As a Chicago History Museum member, Kate is looking forward to rubbing elbows with President Lincoln!

Learn more about "Abraham Lincoln Transformed" at www.ChicagoHistory.org.

Make Your Own Thaumatrope!

In the 1820's, Peter Mark Roget used a thaumatrope in London to demonstrate the persistence of vision to the Royal Academy of Physicians.

A thaumtrope starts with two separate pictures. For instance, one picture is of a peaceful graveyard and the other picture is of a rising ghost. Rapidly alternating between the two pictures, it looks like the ghost is appearing in the sky above the cemetery!

During the Victorian age, thaumatropes were popular toys that children could make for themselves at home in the parlor with a bit of string and paper.

Kate created her own "Ghost in the Graveyard" thaumatrope for children to make during Sunday's "Scary Prairie" event. If you didn't have a chance to make one then, you can print the pictures and directions from Kate's Haunted by History website.

Where History Is Happening

Links to some upcoming events:

All Hallow's Eve at Naper Settlement

October 23 - 24
6:30 - 10 pm

Each night, this living history museum is more like an "undead' history museum. Ghouls and monsters wander the grounds and spooky tales unfold in the historic buildings.

All Hallows' Eve at Midway Village Museum


October 24
2:00 - 8:00 pm

Village buildings are decorated for trick-or-treaters and the Haunted Woods offers frightening fun for those brave enough to stroll there.

Klein Creek Farm

Open Thursdays through Mondays

Farmers still have work to do during these late fall days. See what's happening on this 1890's farm, including blacksmith demonstrations.

Also at the Chicago History Museum

Current Exhibits
Benito Juárez and the Making of Modern Mexico
October 10, 2009 through April 12, 2010

Bertha Honoré Palmer
May 23, 2009 through January 4, 2010

Lincoln Park Block by Block
July 4, 2009 through May 16, 2010

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Congratulations to Pioneer Fest Winners!

We were blessed with some wonderful weather during the Autumn Pioneer Festival in Belvidere and met a lot of nice people during the three days we hung out at our "Bring History Home" display.

Thank you to everyone who stopped by to say "hello" and put their name in our basket. Congratulations to our winners: Laura, Sue, Vickie, Carol and Jeniffer! We hope you and your families enjoy your visit to the Naper Settlement living history museum.

"Six Degrees of Lincoln" Presentation Winners, too!

While in Belvidere for the Autumn Pioneer Festival, Kate gave a presentation at the Keen Age Center on Friday afternoon. Audience members went on a a virtual tour of northern Illinois during the "Six Degrees of Abraham Lincoln" to find local connections to our sixteenth President.

A drawing was held at that event as well. Congratulations to Margaret and Bill, our winners!

"Scary Prairie" Author Event Happens in Forest Park


Kate will be co-hosting a Halloween Author Event in Forest Park on Sunday, October 18 at 2:00 pm. Norm Cowie is launching his latest book "Fang Face," a humorous tale of a teen-aged vampire while Kate talks about her ghost story book "Haunted by History; Spectres in a Small Town."

"Haunted by History" looks at historic buildings in the mid-western town of Naperville, Illinois, and the people who used to live in them. Written for kids ten and older, this collection of short stories delivers facts about local history disguised as ghost stories.

After much careful research, Kate imagines ghostly situations and crafts a chilling tale out of the actual facts to foster an enthusiasm for history in younger readers. As she likes to say to parents and teachers: "They'll learn so much history, it's scary!"

In addition to discussing their books, Kate, dressed in pioneer calico, and Norm, in a black cape, will be offering snacks, crafts and prizes. Kate and Norm encourage kids to attend in their Halloween costumes so the authors won't be the only ones who look odd.

The fun will take place at Centuries and Sleuths Bookstore, a favorite hang-out for readers of mystery and history. For more information, see the store's website or go to Kate's site at www.KateGingold.com.

You can learn more about "Haunted by History" at the book's website, www.HauntedByHistory.com and read a few preview pages there as well.
Bring the kids or grandkids out for this "Scary Prairie" event. We look forward to seeing you!

Where History Is Happening

Links to some upcoming events:

St. Charles Scarecrow Fest

October 9 - 11

View the hotel and home Mary Todd Lincoln reportedly visited while attending this free downtown event. Hundreds of hand-crafted scarecrows, carnival rides, musical entertainment, and more.

Grave Reminders Cemetery Walk

October 10

Learn about some of the interesting characters from St. Charles' past as you visit their final resting places at the North Cemetery .

St. Charles Historic Ghost Tours


October 10 &11

Begins at the Arcada Theatre, a Vaudeville Theatre built in 1926.

Author Event and Book Signing

October 18
2:00 pm

Author Kate Gingold will be at Centuries and Sleuths Bookstore, 7419 W. Madison Street in Forest Park with author Norm Cowie for a Halloween-themed book event.