Manuscript Collections

The Sangamon Valley Collection owns unique collections of materials from Springfield businesses, organizations, and families. These items are stored in a secure area and must be requested. No materials in this collection are available for circulation.

Available Manuscripts

Athens Woman’s Club Collection

The Athens Twentieth Century Club was organized November 1904 and joined the state federation in 1906. The object of the Twentieth Century Club was “literary research and social enjoyment.” (1908 Constitution) It became the Athens Woman’s Club in 1922.The object of the Athens Woman’s Club was “mutual improvement and promotion of the higher social and moral conditions.” (1928 Constitution) The 2001-2002 year booklet named the object of the organization as “education, elucidation and entertaining the community and ourselves.”
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150 Capital Years – Springfield Sesquicentennial Collection

The collection includes information about the April 6th celebration including logistics, call for and certificates of appreciation from Mayor Ossie Langfelder to the photographers for the 150 Capital Years book, submission/description forms for the photographs, newspaper, newsletter, and magazine articles about the Sesquicentennial, correspondence with the US Postal Service and envelopes, Springfield history research, the official logo, commissioned artwork, and finances.
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1976 Bicentennial Celebration Collection

This collection includes materials from the Capital Bicentennial Commission in Springfield, the Illinois Bicentennial Commission, and the American Revolution Bicentennial Administration.
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Administrative Management Society, Springfield Chapter Collection

The Springfield chapter of the National Office Management Association was formed in 1946. They changed the name to Administrative Management Society in 1963-1964. They held monthly programs, an annual business show, and conducted a salary survey.
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Albert Livingstone Collection

Albert Livingstone was born July 16, 1892 in Scott County, Illinois the son of James and Elizabeth Livingstone. He was a veteran of World War I. He was a court reporter for 50 years. He owned Livingstone Reporting Agency in Springfield with his brothers. He was a member of the Laurel United Methodist Church, the Elks Club, American Legion, World War Barracks 185, St. Paul’s Lodge No. 500 AF & AM. He was also a member of the TNT Club, and the Ku Klux Klan, and the Abraham Lincoln Council No. 3 of the Independent Klan of America/Knights of American Protestantism.
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Allis-Chalmers Collection

The Allis-Chalmers Collection consists of photographs showing employees and the machinery manufactured at the Springfield plant.
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American Association of University Women-Springfield Chapter

In 1906 the National Association of Collegiate Alumnae granted a charter to Springfield to form a branch. They had their first meeting in 1907. The organization became the American Association of University Women in 1921.
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Bunn Family Collection

This collection includes biographical information, photos, correspondence of Bunn family members as well as information about the houses they lived in and businesses they owned- Bunn Capitol and Marine Bank.
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Cantrall Family

The collection contains documents primarily related to William G. Cantrall, his sons, and the Cantrall Cemetery Association.
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Carillon Belles/Rees Carillon Bell Society

Documents, newspaper clippings, carillon programs, memoranda and photographs from the collection of Mrs. Violet Touch.
Category:
Arts & Culture
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Catchpole’s Greenhouse Collection

The collection includes operational documents, gardening guides, plant lists, newsletters, correspondence, charitable donation material, newspaper ads, a magazine article, and photos.
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Charles M. Parker Publications

Collections includes the publications of teacher and creator of an educational publishing company, Charles M. Parker.
Category:
Education
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Citizens Tribune Newspaper v. John Hunter

This collection contains materials from the files of J.R. Fitzpatrick, owner of the Citizens Tribune, relating to the lawsuit the Tribune filed against the Commissioner of Public Property for the City of Springfield, John Hunter in 1950.
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Collection of Robert E. Fitzgerald: Items found in the Reisch Building

These items reflect the personal and professional life of Robert E. Fitzgerald and include correspondence, contracts, and photographs.
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Commission on International Visitors

The collection includes establishment materials, meeting minutes, workshop materials, newspaper articles, correspondence, oral histories, and a key to the city of Springfield presented to Commission Chair Annabelle Patton.
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Dancing Improvement Assembly

The Dancing Improvement Assembly collection includes club histories, bylaws, financials, correspondence, invitations and programs, board meeting materials, membership lists, photos, and newspaper articles.
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Douglas Elementary School Parent Teacher Association

The items in this collection focus on the early years of the Douglas Elementary School Parent Teacher Association and are primarily from the 1940s and 1950s.
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Golden Gloves Tournament

The collection contains background information, correspondence, newspaper publicity, expense records, etc., relating to the Citizens Tribune newspaper's involvement with Golden Gloves Tournaments in Springfield from 1944 through 1956.
Category:
Sports & Hobbies
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Greater Springfield Interfaith Association

The collection include GSIA program documentation, bylaws, reports, position papers, board information, correspondence and more.
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Green Family

A group of 23 letters written to and from members of the William Green family of Orvil Township, Logan County, Illinois between the years 1864 and 1884.
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Henry B. House

The Henry B. House Collection contains letters to Henry House, an actor and director of local theater productions until his death in 1953.
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Herman and Emma Schlensack Collection

The items in this collection were found at 1605 Lowell Avenue in Springfield, in a home previously owned by Herman and Emma Schlensack and occupied a various times by Herman and Emma as well as their sons Helmuth and Robert.
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Herndon Family

The Herndon Family Collection is mainly a photographic collection centered on Richard Fleetwood and Kate Herndon’s immediate and extended families.
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Horse Events at Illinois State Fairgrounds Collection

The Illinois State Fairgrounds has been the site of horse racing and horse shows since it was located in 1894 north of Sangamon Avenue and west of Peoria Road.
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Hutton Family

The Hutton Family Collection consists of a series of letters written by Dorothy Hutton as a young girl (1913-1924) from Auburn, Illinois to her mother in Denver, Colorado.
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Iles Manuscript

The Iles Manuscript Collection contains the original, handwritten copy of Iles' autobiography and other Iles family genealogy materials.
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Illinois Association of Minorities in Government Collection

The collection includes Illinois Association of Minorities in Government newsletters, conference programs, and explanations about the organization from the 2000s.
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Illinois State Athletic Commission Collection

The collection contains materials from J.R. Fitzpatrick from his time on the Illinois Athletic Commission.
Category:
Sports & Hobbies
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Illinois State University Research Collection

Illinois State University, Springfield’s first school of higher learning, was inappropriately named because it was actually a private school supported by the Lutheran Church and had no connection with the state of Illinois.
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Irene and Mildred Garvey: Items Related to Their Lives and Travels, 1903 – 1992

The collection includes photos, real estate and financial documents, and travel memorabilia kept by the two sisters.
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John R. Work Collection

The items in the collection come from a scrapbook compiled by John R. Work. It is a reorganization of photographs and memoirs mainly related to Mr. Work’s World War II work in the Office of Strategic Services, but also touching on his art and personal life.
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Johnston, Knox, Morgan Families

Correspondence, business documents, certificates, and obituaries spanning three generations of one family: Leonora Knox Morgan, her father, James Madison Knox and her grandfather, Levi Johnston.
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Junior League of Springfield Collection

Women founded the Service League of Springfield in 1939. It became the Junior League of Springfield in 1950. The collection includes organization yearbooks 1950s-2000s, board, financial, and committee materials from the 1960s and 1980s, newspaper clippings about the organization and their events and projects, programs, photos, and newspaper clippings related to their Follies event 1940s-1980s, New Salem Tour program materials 1960s, Lincoln sites tour program materials 1960s, newspaper clippings and correspondence related to the Lincoln Home area and the Survey and Plan.
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Lard/Shepherd Manuscript Collection

John Lard and his family came and settled in Ball Township of Sangamon County in 1835. Among their children was Josiah who had a son Jacob. Jacob married Stella Leach and to them a daughter, Geneva, was born. Geneva married Louis Pitner Shepherd. Their son was Jacob “Jake” Lard Shepherd.
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Lincoln Library War Effort, 1917-1918 Collection

As part of the American Library Association’s (ALA) campaign for the Library War Fund, Lincoln Library headed the effort for Springfield to raise over $2300 for reading materials and library equipment for the camps from 1917 to 1918.
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Lincoln Memorial Garden and Nature Center

The collection includes materials related to the operation of Lincoln Memorial Garden-correspondence, grounds notebook, committee reports, and maintenance plans, Administrators reports, Annual reports and meeting minutes, treasurers reports and financial records, photos, history and bylaws, newspaper clippings, event calendars, and items related Harriet Knudson and garden development.
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Liturgical Arts Festival of Springfield Collection

The Liturgical Arts Festival of Springfield began as an idea of the Reverend Thom Dennis, then priest of Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, who envisioned an event that would showcase sacred art. Within two years, his original concept of an invitation-only art show, held in a church basement, had blossomed into the Liturgical Arts Festival, an exhibition of liturgical and sacred art, as well as a festival of performing arts.
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Masonic Temple Collection

The collection includes correspondence from the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry “Valley of Springfield” masonic organization to the members, newspaper articles from the 1950s-1970, and event advertisements. Also included are documents concerning King David’s Grand Lodge Charleston, Illinois 1862/1873 and the “Royal Architect” degree 1875.
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Menard County Home Bureau / Homemakers Extension Collection

In 1921 home bureaus in 24 counties organized the Home Bureau Federation. The Menard County-Cass Home Bureau was organized in 1937. The Menard County Home Bureau organized in 1945 and the name was changed to The Menard County Homemakers Extension Association in 1962.
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Myers Brothers Department Store

Included in this collection are many photographs, newspaper clippings, correspondence and many materials relating to sales promotions of various types.
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Name the Urban Park Contest Collection

A new park was constructed at 6th and Jefferson Streets in Springfield in 1987. The Mayor held a "Name the Urban Park" contest. He appointed a committee to select a name from the public submissions. Union Square Park was dedicated on November 9, 1987.
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Oak Ridge Cemetery National Register Research Materials

Research materials for the National Register of Historic Places nomination application (1995) for Oak Ridge Cemetery written by Edward Russo.
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Opera Houses- Rudolph, Bunn, Chatterton: Broadsides, Flyers and Programs Collection

Broadsides, Flyers and Programs from Rudolph, Bunn, Chatterton Opera Houses in Springfield, Illinois 1867-1902.
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Palmer Sanatorium Collection

Dr. George Thomas Palmer specialized in treating tuberculosis patients. Dr. Palmer opened the Springfield Open Air Colony in 1913. It was located in a farm house on 20 acres at the end of Lawrence Avenue where Chatham Road intersects. Soon the name was changed to Palmer Sanatorium.
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Pearl Irene Wheeler Collection

This collection consists of eight composition notebooks kept by Pearl Irene Wheeler as a student at Springfield High School and as a student at the Springfield Teacher's Training School between 1913-14.
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Pondicherry Lodge of the Baker Street Irregulars Collection

The Pondicherry Lodge chapter of the Baker Street Irregulars was created in Springfield in 1947 and met for a few years then the club went dormant in 1949. Glen Milner revived the organization in Springfield in 1989. The group’s members are Sherlock Holmes enthusiasts.
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Poston Brick Company Collection

Materials for Springfield Brick Company, Springfield Paving Brick Company, Poston Brick Company, Poston Springfield Brick Company, Martinsville Brick Company, Moulding Brick Company, and Poston Brick and Concrete Products Company.
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Prairie Arts Chapter of the Embroiderers’ Guild of America Collection

The collections includes the chapter’s history, correspondence, news articles, invoices, program materials, book and equipment inventory, membership information, photo scrapbook pages, EGA materials, Heartland Regional materials, and PCA monthly newsletter “Needle News” from 1985-2014.
Category:
Sports & Hobbies
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Prehn

This collection contains correspondence, photographs, blueprints, business records, and newspaper clippings dealing with the personal and business life of Harold W. Prehn, a prominent Springfield businessman.
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Retired Teachers Club

The collection includes club yearbooks 1950s-2014 (some missing), meeting minutes 1940-2014 (some missing), treasurer’s reports/finances 1960s-2015 (some missing), correspondence, program information, membership and retirement (potential membership) information, and necrology reports of obituaries, people in the news, and cards sent 2004-May 2015.
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Robert Waldmire: Correspondence and Artwork 1991-2008 Collection

The collection includes information about his family, articles about him, Route 66 postcards, flyers, and publications, Arizona items, Mustang items, correspondence between Robert Waldmire and Marjorie Westphal 1992-1998, artwork by Bob, photos, and Cozy dog items.
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Saint Nicholas Hotel Bankruptcy

Collection includes the papers of J.R. Fitzpatrick and other documents relating to the bankruptcy of Springfield's St. Nicholas Hotel.
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Sangamon County Medical Society Alliance Collection

The collection includes Sangamon County Medical Society Auxiliary/Alliance scrapbooks, cassette tapes of programs, newsletters of the Sangamon County Medical Society Auxiliary and the Illinois State Medical Society Auxiliary, and presidents’ yearly binders and folders containing yearbooks, brochures, meeting minutes, news articles, financial reports, membership lists, and projects.
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Sangamon Lodge No. 6, International Order of Odd Fellows Collection

Meeting minutes of the Sangamon Lodge No. 6, Sangamon Lodge No. 6 receipt book, History and Roster of Sangamon Lodge No. 6 and other Springfield and Illinois Lodges, Program of Ceremony for Memorial Day 1895. Contents cover 1846-1895.
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Springfield Area AIDS Task Force

The Springfield Area AIDS Task Force (SAATF) was a non-profit organization funded by grants, membership fees, and donations from individuals, groups and community organizations. The purpose of SAATF was to inform and educate members, as well as the community of Springfield and the surrounding area, in dealing with the threat posed by AIDS and AIDS related issues, and offered help in obtaining support services to those people with AIDS in the community.
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Springfield Audubon Society Collection

The Springfield chapter of the Illinois Audubon Society began in 1932 as the Springfield Nature League. In 1960, the Nature League voted to affiliate with the National Audubon Society and changed its name to the Springfield Audubon Society. In 1979, after more than a year of discussion and preparation, the Springfield Audubon Society adopted new by-laws and voted to seek chapter status in the Illinois Audubon Society. The collection includes materials from 1932-2004 from the Springfield Audubon Society and its predecessor the Springfield Nature League.
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Springfield Cardinals Collection

The Springfield Cardinals were a minor league baseball team in Springfield, Illinois from 1982 through 1993. They played in Robin Roberts Stadium, previously known as Lanphier Park.
Category:
Sports & Hobbies
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Springfield Community Concert Association Collection

A collection of documents, newspaper clippings and photographs donated by former association board member Charles Keating.
Category:
Arts & Culture
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Springfield Municipal Opera

Documents, newspaper clippings, reports, programs, and photographs from the Muni (Springfield Municipal Opera).
Category:
Arts & Culture
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Springfield Newcomers Club Collection

The Springfield Newcomers Club formed in October 1932. According to its by-laws “the objective of this organization shall be to develop friendship and social spirit among new residents and to promote their assimilation into their community”-1994/1996.
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Springfield Philatelic Society Collection

The Springfield Philatelic Society was begun in 1952 in order to give area philatelists an opportunity to meet, exchange stamps and ideas, promote their hobby, and encourage newcomers to the hobby.
Category:
Sports & Hobbies
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Springfield Rowing Collection

The collection is a combination of materials from the Springfield Rowing Club, the Springfield Rowing Development Association, and the Lake Springfield Rowing Club.
Category:
Sports & Hobbies
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Springfield Theatre Centre Collection

The Springfield Theatre Guild was created in 1946. The first performance at their own theater at 101 E. Lawrence was on November 8, 1951. The organization later changed its name to Springfield Theatre Centre.
Category:
Arts & Culture
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Springfield Theatre Guild Junior Theatre Collection

The collection contains photographs, programs, scripts, and articles from Junior Theatre productions in the 1950s.
Category:
Arts & Culture
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Springfield Transportation Company

The materials in this collection include photographs, newspaper clippings, employee records, newsletters and information from the founding of the SMTD from the 1930's to the 1970's.
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Springfield/Illinois Symphony Orchestra Collection

The Springfield Symphony Orchestra had a casual beginning with a few community volunteers who enjoyed playing string instruments. In 1948 a formal organization was incorporated. The orchestra reorganized and changed its name to the Illinois Symphony Orchestra in 1993.
Category:
Arts & Culture
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Susan E. Wilcox Collection

Susan E. Wilcox was born in May of 1866 or 1867. She graduated from Springfield High School in 1884 and from Wellesley College in 1887. Her teaching career began at Springfield High School in 1888 and ended with her retirement in 1935.
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Third Presbyterian Church Springfield, Illinois

The collection includes church service programs from the 1930s-1960s (mostly 1960s) and “The Third Presbyterian Beacon” newsletter 1961-1971.
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Thomas Maurice Lawrence Jr. Collection

545 Thomas Maurice Lawrence Jr. was born in Springfield, Illinois on January 2, 1897, the son of Thomas M. Lawrence Sr. and Nettie (Barnstable) Lawrence. He went on to become an insurance and bond salesman, marrying when he was nearly 50 years old to Greta Wilkinson.
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Town House Apartments Collection

The Town House Apartments at 718 S. 7th St. opened in 1958. The building was designed by the architectural firm of Shaw, Metz & Dolio, Chicago and built by general contractor Evans Construction, Springfield.
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United Way Collection

The collection includes meeting minutes of the Sangamon Council of Social Agencies, Associated Welfare Agencies, the Springfield Community Fund, the Springfield Community Chest, the War Fund Council, and the Welfare Council of Sangamon County. It also includes fund campaign materials from the 1940s-1950s and 1973, scrapbooks of general publicity news clippings from the 1900s-1950s, and annual reports from the 1940s-1990s. The audiovisual materials are United Fund slide show carousel, magnetic tape and cassette of WMAY spot, and cassette of Illinois Battle Hymn.
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United World Federalists

The object of the United World Federalist chapter of Springfield, IL shall be to promote the acceptance of the beliefs and general understanding of the purpose of the United World Federalists, Inc. in strengthening social forces favorable to world-wide peace and justice through law and order.
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USS Abraham Lincoln Collection

The USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72), the Navy’s fifth Nimitz-class aircraft carrier, was the largest military ship ever constructed at the time. It honors Lincoln’s commitment to the Navy.
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USS Springfield Collection

Dr. Temple was the director of the Commissioning Committee for the USS Springfield Submarine. Springfield, Illinois and Springfield, Massachusetts are the namesakes for the USS Springfield submarine. The USS Springfield (SSN 761) was launched on January 4, 1992 at Groton, Connecticut. It was the fourth Navy ship to be named for Springfield. The Springfield is a Los Angeles class, a nuclear-powered attack submarine.
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Vachel Lindsay

This collection is comprised largely of materials containing the published prose and poetry of Vachel Lindsay in formats such as posters, newspapers and magazine articles, booklets, pamphlets magazines and books.
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Weaver Garage and Manufacturing Company

This collection consists of approximately 700 photographs, advertising and promotional literature, and photographs of wrecked automobiles from the years 1926-1927.
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William Florville Family Collection

John Louis Florville Levonle later William Florville (Fleurville) (1807-1868) was Haitian-born. After his parents died, he moved from Haiti to Baltimore, Maryland where he attended Catholic school and was an apprentice in a barber shop. He moved to New Orleans to set up a barber shop and then St. Louis. He arrived in Springfield in 1831. In 1832 he married Phoebe Roundtree, a former slave.  He was a barber and businessman whose shop on Adams Street between Fifth and Sixth streets became a regular meeting place for Springfieldians, including Abraham Lincoln. The surname has a variety of spellings Floriville, Fleurville, De Fleurville.
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World War II Oral History Project

A collection consisting of 24 audio cassettes of 17 local individuals interviewed by Glenn Kniss regarding their experiences during the war.
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