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posted: 8/5/2013 1:19 PM

Historical group recreates Lily Lake debate

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Submitted by McHenry County Historical Society

The McHenry County Historical Society examines the topsy-turvy political climate that was Lakemoor when it wasn't Lakemoor.

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The society's Perkins Hall Players present "Path to Lakemoor -- The Dissolution of Lily Lake" at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 7, at the old Seneca Township Hall, now called Perkins Hall, at the corner of Franklinville and Garden Valley Roads southwest of Woodstock.

It is September 1941 and emotions are running high inside Lily Lake. Questions that surrounded the village's incorporation in 1938 -- including the validity of votes and its boundaries -- remain. There have been allegations of assault and political interference, contempt of court and fraud. It has led to what the press described as "riotous behavior."

In fact, the rift is so bad that many of those who backed formation of the village just a few years before now are calling for its end.

On this night people are gathered at the nearby McHenry Town Hall (actually Perkins Hall -- i.e. the old Seneca Township Hall), where McHenry Township Supervisor Math N. Schmitt has agreed to host a public meeting in an effort to stop the feuding and rancor.

Each year the historical society strives to re-create an interesting and historically significant event from the county's past. Previous topics have included the McHenry County Poor Farm, the rise of women's organizations in mid-19th century, controversy surrounding "dirty dancing" in the 1920s, consternation in 1906 involving newfangled automobiles -- i.e. "devil wagons" -- and, last year, the feud over lake rights on McCullom Lake.

The society's intent is for the public to "sit in" on a meeting between those working to dissolve the village of Lily Lake and those who wish preserve the village. Join in the fun and help us step back in time.

Period clothing encouraged for this free event. Light refreshments to follow. Keep in mind there are no restrooms and to avoid parking along busy Franklinville Road.

For information, call (815) 923-2267 or visit www.gothistory.org.

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