Monthly Archives: December 2014

Sheriffs, 1821-2015 (list)

Here is a list of people – all men – who have served as sheriff of Sangamon County since the county was established on Jan. 30, 1821. Dates indicate when the sheriffs were commissioned unless noted. John Taylor: 1821, ’22, … Continue reading

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Circuit clerks, 1821-2015 (list)

The histories of the 27 people – 25 men and two women – who have held the office of Sangamon County circuit clerk were researched in 2011 by Savannah Little. The resulting brief biographies can be read on the circuit … Continue reading

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Dr. C. Robert Fults (elm cleanup)

Dr. C. Robert Fults (1911-66) headed a massive volunteer effort to remove dead elms from Springfield streets following an epidemic of elm disease in 1949.

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Elm devastation, 1940s

The malady that killed thousands of Sangamon County’s elm trees in the late 1940s wasn’t the dreaded Dutch elm disease. It was worse. The Illinois State Journal sounded the first alarm in its Aug. 3, 1945 edition: “Elm attacked by … Continue reading

Posted in Disasters, Local government | Leave a comment

Helen Dodge Edwards (obituary)

The Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society for April 1909 to January 1910 included an obituary of Helen Kissick Dodge Edwards (1819-1909), widow of Benjamin Edwards, matriarch of Edwards Place and, as the obituary says, “the ideal of an … Continue reading

Posted in Amusements, Early residents, Prominent figures, Social life, Women | Leave a comment

Sangamon County Lithuanians in World War I

More than 50,000 Lithuanian-Americans fought for the United States in World War I. This remarkable number was later leveraged to lobby U.S. President Woodrow Wilson to recognize the newly independent Lithuanian state that emerged from the War’s aftermath. The vast … Continue reading

Posted in Coal mines and mining, Lithuanians, Military | 3 Comments

The Historic Preservation Association of Springfield

Note: This post has been revised by the author. By the middle 1980s, the preservation of historically and architecturally significant buildings had become the subject of growing attention in Springfield. This attention reflected national trends, as well as regret over … Continue reading

Posted in Architecture, Historic Sites, Local government, National Register, Springfield | 3 Comments

Henry M. Lutz (Capital Airport, Franklin Life)

See Abraham Lincoln Capital Airport.

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Vito Impastato (restaurateur, organized crime suspect)

Vito Impastato, though often suspected of crimes including kidnapping, bank robbery and murder, built an enduring career as a restaurant operator in Springfield. His restaurants began in the 1930s with the Club Holiday, MacArthur Boulevard and North Grand Avenue. Later, … Continue reading

Posted in Business, Crime and vice, Law enforcement, Prominent figures, Restaurants, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Frank Zito and the Zito brothers (organized crime)

Frank Zito, usually characterized as “Springfield’s godfather,” remains a fabled figure in the history of Springfield organized crime four decades after his death. He attended the notorious Apalachin, N.Y., conference of Mafia chieftains, seriocomically invoked the Fifth Amendment before a … Continue reading

Posted in Crime and vice, Law enforcement, Prominent figures | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments