Monthly Archives: August 2015

Calista Herndon (Maternal Health Center)

Calista Herndon was one of about a dozen socially prominent women who founded Springfield’s first birth control clinic. See Maternal Health Center/Planned Parenthood.

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Jeanette MacDonald concert controversy, 1939-40

A 1940 appearance in Springfield by singer/actress Jeanette MacDonald was controversial, but it provided long-term financing for the city’s first birth-control clinic. See Maternal Health Center/Planned Parenthood.

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Maternal Health Center/Planned Parenthood

The Maternal Health Center, Springfield’s first avowed birth control clinic, was created in 1938 by about a dozen socially prominent women. Its early leaders included Elizabeth “Libby” Lanphier (1908-97), Calista Herndon (1902-83) and Mary “Dougie” Funk (1900-80). The center faced several obstacles … Continue reading

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Illinois State Fair butter cow

The Illinois State Fair’s first butter cow, sculpted in 1922, was the image of an actual champion cow, the University of Illinois’ Raleigh’s Sibyl. Raleigh’s Sibyl produced 18,847 pounds of milk in 1920, a record at the time. Nebraska sculptor … Continue reading

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Grand Hotel

The Grand Hotel, 109-11 N. Seventh St., was the longest-lived of Springfield’s classic downtown hotel/rooming houses. See Downtown Springfield hotels, 1907-16.

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Downtown Springfield hotels, 1907-16

Although overshadowed by larger, more lavish hostelries, like the St. Nicholas, Abraham Lincoln and Leland hotels, smaller hotels and boarding houses dotted downtown Springfield during much of the 20th century. Some catered to traveling salesmen, while others housed more or … Continue reading

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