Local History and Genealogy Blog

Newly processed: Heitzman Architectural Survey of Champaign-Urbana

917 West University Avenue, Champaign, 1974

Above: 917 West University Ave., Champaign

The Frank Heitzman Architectural Survey of Champaign-Urbana collection is now available for public browsing. The collection contains a copy of the manuscript, The Architectural Survey of Champaign-Urbana, along with approximately 200 informational cards measuring 4” by 6” from the survey described therein. Most cards have a photographic negative measuring 1” by 1.25” attached.

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Lincoln the Lawyer, a statue by Lorado Taft

Lincoln the Lawyer statue by Laredo Taft, 1943On July 3, 1927, Franklin H. Boggs, George M. Bennett, Joseph C. Blair, and Lorado Z. Taft met on the steps of the recently completed Urbana-Lincoln Hotel to give a dedication ceremony honoring the newest addition to the hotel, a bronze statue of the 16th president of the United States, Abraham Lincoln, titled “Lincoln the Lawyer”. The statue was designed and sculpted by Taft, a nationally known sculptor and University of Illinois graduate. It was beautifully executed with a standing Lincoln resting his arms across a slab of stone, looking as though he is about to give a speech or offer an argument in court.  Read more about Lincoln the Lawyer, a statue by Lorado Taft

A Bicycle Friendly Community

Bicycle sign drawing, City of Urbana Public Works Dept. Records

Today, both Champaign and Urbana are recognized as Bicycle Friendly Communities by the League of American Bicyclists. According to the organization’s website, ‘A Bicycle Friendly Community’ welcomes bicyclists by providing safe accommodations for bicycling and encouraging people to bike for transportation and recreation. Making bicycling safe and convenient are keys to improving public health, reducing traffic congestion, improving air quality and improving quality of life.’

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Parks in Urbana, Illinois

The city of Urbana has grown and changed a lot over the years. There always seems to be something new and different. One thing that hasn’t changed is that Urbana has a lot of parks with fun activities for families and individuals to enjoy. Read more about Parks in Urbana, Illinois

Party with the Library

This Saturday, July 7, 2018, we are celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Library’s landmark building, which opened to the public in July 1918. It was designed by Joseph W. Royer, with a $35,000 gift from Mary E. Busey, as a memorial to her husband, Samuel T. Busey. We will have exhibits, music, special remarks, cake and specialty drinks from the Café, games and activities from the early 1900s, and more. Read more about Party with the Library