Explore the history of Elgin during Preservation Month

  • As part of Preservation Month, historian Bill Briska will talk about the Elgin Mental Health Center, a state psychiatric hospital, and the dramatic changes in mental health care in just the past 30 years on Thursday, May 12.

      As part of Preservation Month, historian Bill Briska will talk about the Elgin Mental Health Center, a state psychiatric hospital, and the dramatic changes in mental health care in just the past 30 years on Thursday, May 12. JOHN STARKS | Staff Photographer, 2009

 
 
Posted4/28/2022 3:58 PM

Discover architectural elements and artifacts from historic Elgin homes on loan from the Elgin Heritage Commission on the second floor of the Gail Borden Public Library in May. Learn about local history and how to preserve your heritage at these programs at the main library, 270 N. Grove Ave. in downtown Elgin.

Register at gailborden.info/register. For more information about preservation programs, visit gailborden.info/preservationmonth.

 

Explore famous Chicago locations and test your Chicago knowledge with clues and photos provided by author and photographer Jessica Mlinaric at a Chicago Scavenger Hunt at 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 3, in the Elgin Room.

Discover "Historical Architectural Styles in Elgin" with Elgin Preservation Planner Christen Sundquist at 7 p.m. Thursday, May 5. She will offer an overview of historic architectural styles covering every era, using Elgin homes as examples.

Find out how to learn the history of your home at this hands-on program, "Research Your Kane County Home's History Online," with historian Rebecca Hunter at 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 11, in the computer training room.

Learn about the twists and turns of the state hospital and the dramatic changes in mental health care in just the past 30 years on Thursday, May 12, when Elgin historian Bill Briska will talk about the "Elgin Mental Health Center History." It will be offered at 7 p.m. in person and on Zoom. Briska has revised and updated his 1997 book "The History of the Elgin Mental Health Center: An Evolution of a State Hospital."

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Two program times will be offered for "Preserving Your Memories," and learning how to convert from analog to digital formats. It will be offered at 10 a.m. Wednesday, May 11 and 6 p.m. Thursday, May 19.

"The Secrets in the Attic: Restoration of 278 Douglas Ave." will be presented at 7 p.m. Thursday, May 19. Contractors working on grant rehabilitation projects sometimes have the opportunity to gain valuable knowledge about the history of the building they're working on. Design Review Subcommittee Chair Scott Savel of All Around Home Improvements will share historical artifacts and extensive family history he discovered while working on 278 Douglas Avenue. Property owner Grant Born received a Mayor's Award in 2017 for revitalizing and rehabilitating buildings on Douglas Avenue. Architectural Historian Rebecca Hunter will join Scott to provide stylistic information and detail early history research that was done for the Heritage Commission Building Plaque awarded in December 2018.

On Thursday, May 26, learn about Elgin's Historic Preservation Grant Program with Elgin Heritage Commission Chair John Marston at 7 p.m. in the Elgin Room. The commission offers annual grants to assist in historic renovation. Learn how to apply for one at this informative lecture.

The Elgin Heritage Commission is a citizen's advisory body that promotes Elgin's historic preservation activity through the education, protection, maintenance, and preservation of the city's architectural, historic, and cultural resources. Learn more at historicelgin.com.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

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