Bill Post shares stories of Middletown with historical society
Send a link to a friend
[July 17, 2012]
Monday evening, Bill Post of the
Middletown Historical Society gave an interesting talk about
Middletown and its connection with Abraham Lincoln. The occasion was
a meeting of the Logan County Genealogical and Historical Society at
the group's building on Chicago Street, across from the Lincoln
Post said Middletown was founded in 1832, making it the oldest
existing town in Logan County. He spoke of Logan County's oldest
brick building (circa 1840), which has been restored and now houses
the Middletown Historical Society.
He reported that Logan County surveyor John Calhoun asked Abraham
Lincoln to be the county's deputy surveyor for the Musick Ferry
crossing project, one mile north of Middletown.
Middletown, as its name suggests, lies halfway between
Springfield and Peoria and is reported to have once been considered
as a place for the capital of Illinois. Post read from documents
indicating that Abraham Lincoln traveled the road from Springfield
to Peoria many times and would stay over at the Middletown Stage
Coach Inn, which also has been restored and is open for visits. Both
the Middletown Historical Society and Stage Coach Inn buildings are
Illinois State Historic Sites.
Post mentioned several additional events that have occurred over
the years in and around Middletown -- one being the unexpected
landing of the Vin Fiz, a privately purchased Wright Brothers
biplane, in 1911, during a transcontinental flight from New York to
Long Beach, Calif.
Although the Vin Fiz failed to win the $50,000 prize offered by
publisher William Randolph Hearst for accomplishing the feat in 30
days or less, it nevertheless set several records.
Another record-setting event in Middletown occurred with hot-air
[to top of second column]
Following the program, refreshments were served.
At the group's next meeting, on Aug. 20, a speaker from
Beardstown will talk about the Beardstown Courthouse, which is the
oldest still-existing courthouse in which Abraham Lincoln practiced
law and was the site of Lincoln's "Almanac Trial."
The Logan County Genealogical & Historical Society has a new
website, now available at
[By PHIL BERTONI]