Mount Pulaski Township Historical Museum

2004 Restoration -   2005

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Restoration Progress - Mar 1, 2005

Restoration Progress - Feb 3, 2005

Restoration Progress - Jan 27, 2005

Restoration Progress - Jan 14, 2005


         The museum restoration (upper two floors) is under the direction of Mrs. Betty Hickey, widowed wife of deceased Mr. James Hickey, former curator of the Lincoln Collection at the Illinois State Historical Library (which is now located in the new Abraham Lincoln Memorial Library).

         A year ago, the two balcony rooms (see above picture - left) were completely restored by Jim Irish.  The Danner Trust provided the funds for these balcony restorations.   The balconies had to be completely renovated.  Even new flooring had to be replaced on the inside next to the balconies.  These buildings were built in the late 1890's.  The writing "Mt. Pulaski Historical Museum" at the top of these two buildings is an artist rendition and has not been accomplished as of this date.  

         There are ten rooms on the upper two levels of the former Thomas & Homer Harris Brothers Law building (once the 1st National Bank and Romer's Tavern) undergoing extensive renovation.  Walls, floors, ceilings, windows, window casings, doors, sky lights, chair rails, wainscoting, and lighting are being cleaned, fixed, refinished, and restored to period times.   Sanding, scraping, patching, dry-walling, re-flooring, scrubbing, painting, and wall-papering are being accomplished.  Furniture, wall hangings, fixtures, displays and display cases are needed.  Jim Irish is spearheading the finish work on the walls, ceilings, window casings, and floors.  Betty Hickey and Gini Bertoni are working diligently on this project.  Tom Stephens has spent hundreds of hours on the electrical work as well as on the fixing, patching, and repairing of walls, floors, window casings and doors.  At one time or another, Bill Bryson, Deron Powell, Pat Przykopanski, Tom Martin, Bob McCue and Phil Bertoni have lent a hand.

        The rooms being converted to period rooms will be the following:  old school room (slate boards, old ink-well desks), music & sports rooms, parlor, multi-period kitchen, South-Side Club card room, bed room, sewing room and dinning room.  Mount Pulaski and the surrounding township has had many many successes and achievements in education, sports, and music (Collegiate Football 3-time All-Western player in 1906-1907-1908;  championship HS basketball seasons in 1936, 1976, 1984;  HS baseball championship teams in 1941 & 2003; school choirs, instrumental orchestras, marching bands-numerous sweepstakes in the 40's, 50's & 60's, various adult band and choir groups & organizations that have appeared all the way back into the 19th century, plays & productions), which will be highlighted in the school room and music & sports room.  The famous "South Side Club" room will be restored to its original appearance, give or take a few spittoons.

        Attention: Mount Pulaskians, former Mount Pulaskians, friends & relatives of present & former Mount Pulaskians, and neighboring Mount Pulaski Township folk - please let us know if you have items that may be suitable for any of these rooms.  Many items have already been donated and some cash donations have also been received.  Any donation can be taken off at tax time, since the Mt. Pulaski Township Historical Society and Museum is a tax-free entity.  Cash donations in large amounts, and donated antique or expensive items will continue to be recognized on plaques and labels throughout the museum.  The bottom two floors of the museum will continue to be open to visitors during this restoration period.