Learn about the History of Local Churches at our October 26, 2014 Adult Lecture

Have you ever wondered about all the different churches in town? Interested in learning more about their history and the role they have played in Western Springs’ development? If so, please join us on Sunday, October 26th at 4 p.m. in the sanctuary of First Congregational Church, 1106 Chestnut Avenue for the Historical Society’s first Adult Ed lecture of the 2014/15 program year. The presentation, which is free to the public, will be given by representatives from each church. Refreshments will be served after the presentation when attendees will also have an opportunity to view a selection of historic photos and documents from each church’s archives.

Work on Historic Water Tower Museum continues!

The Historical Society continues to work with the Village of Western Springs to facilitate various improvements to the Historic Water Tower Museum. Earlier this month, the Society installed an historically appropriate mosaic tile floor in the front entry way. It is beautiful and a huge improvement over the carpeting that it replaced!

The Historical Society would like to thank the Village Green Questers and the State Questers for providing the necessary funding for this project! Next up is the restoration of all the windows at the Tower. We were very excited to learn that the Village has decided to restore all of the windows this fall. Work will start in a couple of weeks and will take approximately 6-8 weeks to complete. Unfortunately, this will require shutting down the museum in the interim. We will be open on Saturday, August 30th (Labor Day weekend) but will then close until some time in late October or early November. Please watch for future notices as to when we will reopen.  If you have any questions regarding these or other projects, be sure to contact us at the Archives (246-9230).

Western Springs goes back in time for one day at the Western Springs Historical Society’s MayFest

The Western Springs Historical Society (WSHS), presented an afternoon of old-fashioned family fun during MayFest, a new biennial event designed to raise awareness of the Society and its Preservation Awards. The event took place Sunday, May 4 at the Tower Green.

The afternoon featured traditional carnival games, old-fashioned entertainment, food and crafts. Carnival games included nostalgic favorites like the milk can toss, bucket drop and a scavenger hunt with a raffle prize. Entertainment featured a juggler, unicyclists, Maypole dancers, and the Western Springs-based Allegro fiddle and dance ensemble. Food included lemonade, popcorn, cotton candy and an old-fashioned candy table. Craft tables offered boys and girls the opportunity to create crafts from another time, like May baskets, crowns and pennants. Children, preschool through grade 4th grade, participated in a coloring contest.

Community businesses chipped in to support the event and include: Event Sponsor: Realty Executives. Activity Sponsors: Core Pilates, Elements Massage, First Congregational Preschool, Dr. Phillip Girgis D.D.S., j2 Santi Builders, Village Veterinary Practice and the Western Springs Garden Club.


Historic Home Ownership: Challenges and Rewards presented by Charlie Pipal, AIA, Thursday, April 17th @ 7 pm, Thomas Ford Library (lower level)

Thanks to all who attended this informative program. Here are some photos from that evening:

Ownership of an older home poses interesting challenges.  Design flexibility, outdated mechanical systems, electrical and plumbing issues, lack of insulation and leaky windows are just a few of the many problems confronted by owners of older homes.  Join architect Charles Pipal as he discusses specific issues and solutions to historic home stewardship.

Charles Pipal, AIA is a practicing architect and professor in the Historic Preservation Program at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Landscape Architecture and a Master’s Degree in Architecture from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, with a concentration in historic preservation.  He is a past director of Landmarks Illinois, where he served as chair of the Fund and Easement Committee and currently serves as the Chair of the Riverside Preservation Commission and Vice President of the Pleasant Home Foundation.  Professor Pipal’s particular professional and academic focus has been on the physical documentation and rehabilitation of historic resources.

The Western Springs Historical Society (WSHS) presented “The Evolution of Education in Western Springs” Wed. Feb. 26, 2014

Vicki's school presentation

WSHS president, Vicki Lezon, shared research findings on the history of schools in Western Springs dating back to 1874, in a humorous and enlightening presentation at a free lecture Wednesday, February 26 at 7pm in the McClure Junior High Library. Participants heard how education in Western Springs has changed over the past 140 years and how it has stayed the same.




Past Western Springs Historical Society President Allyson Zak Honored

On October 8th, current Historical Society President, Vicki Lezon, along with the board, presented past President and current board member Allyson Zak with a memorial brick to commemorate her four years of excellent service to the Historical Society as President. The brick will join other commemorative bricks in front of the Ekdahl House. Thank you, Allyson!

Allyson Zak

Allyson Zak