Albert Brothers put the 95.5 percent efficient unit in and removed
the old system, which was expensive both to run and to maintain.
"This unit will provide a toasty house of worship more efficiently
and economically," said the Rev. Peggie Senor of Springfield, pastor
of the church. "The members are thankful for the blessing from the
generosity of the Russell Allen estate.
"Come and worship with Allen when the days are cold," she
invited, "and enjoy the warmth with us."
Russell Allen, who died in 2007 at the age of 85, sometimes
attended services at Allen Chapel. A microbiologist, he retired from
Lincoln Developmental Center in December of 1991. He was a member of
the Toastmaster’s Club of Lincoln, Illinois lab societies and a
local computer club. He was a Master Gardener and he volunteered at
the Lincoln Public Library.
Allen Chapel also recently received three new storm windows for
the east side of the building through the 2012 Together for Lincoln
The small brick church, at 910 Broadway, one of the oldest
continuously used black churches in the area, welcomes people of all
races. The congregation was formed in 1866 and the present building
was erected in 1880.
Allen Chapel is the only church building in Logan County that is
listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It was named to
the register in 2004, due in great part to the many services it has
provided to the black community throughout its many years of
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Allen Chapel has connections to acclaimed author Langston Hughes;
literary giant William Maxwell; Dr. William Dyer, one of the first
black surgeons of World War I; and Aaron Dyer, who in his early
years was a driver for the Underground Railroad.
Early in 2011, a local volunteer group known as the Friends of
Allen Chapel began work to restore the church building. Since then,
the exterior of the building has been re-pointed, exterior trim has
been repaired and repainted, and the storm windows and new heating
system have been installed. Money has also been donated to repair
the handrails on the front steps.
Remaining needs include pest control, some interior repair work,
stripping and refinishing tables, and construction of bookshelves
that will house a historical display. Donations for renovation can
be made to the Friends of Allen Chapel account at the State Bank of
For more information, call Allen Chapel at 217-732-7537 and leave
[Text from file received from Nancy Saul]