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To the editor:
I have been following the media in regards to the
proposals by powers-to-be in Lincoln of having the City of Lincoln
absorb the functions of the Logan County Tourism Board. This would,
in my view and in the view of all Mount Pulaskians and no doubt of
all Logan County residents outside of the City of Lincoln, be a
mistake not only for the other towns but also for the City of
The towns (outside of Lincoln) involved are too small to advertise
and promote on their own ... frankly, the county of Logan is quite
small in terms of total population, yet so very very important in
terms of its history and current events.
While we easily admit that the City of Lincoln is the flagship of
Logan County, we also wish to emphasize that the promotion of other
non-City of Lincoln Historical sites and events of today would
better serve all of the towns to invite visitors from and outside
of Logan County to the historic sites and events existing and/or
held in towns such as Mount Pulaski, Elkhart, Lake Fork, Chestnut,
Atlanta, Latham, Cornland, etc.
There are many more attractions for visitors in Logan County in
addition to those in the City of Lincoln.
For example, the Mount Pulaski Historical Society's Museum on its
square's south side has oodles of photos and information on:
Abraham Lincoln in Mount Pulaski as a lawyer (1849-1855);
Wilbur Wright's famous 1910 race between one of his airplanes and
the Illinois Central Train, both of which stopped in Mount Pulaski
The history of brass bands in Mount Pulaski, most of which
originated amongst the German immigrants in and around Mount.
Pulaski to which these immigrants brought their music and brass
instrument from Germany.
1st lady of radio: Vaughn DeLeath, was a Mount Pulaski Native, born
Leonore Vonderlieth in 1894, her parents were George and Catherine
Vonderlieth of Mount Pulaski. At age 12, Leonore relocated to Los
Angeles with her mother and sister following the death of her
father, where she finished high school and studied music. While at
Mills College, she began writing songs, but dropped out to pursue a
singing career. She then adopted the stage name "Vaughn De Leath."
Her vocals ranged from soprano to deep contralto. De Leath adapted
to the emerging, less restrictive jazz vocal style of the late 1910s
and early 1920s.
The 1900 Republican Campaign entourage of Pres. William McKinley,
Vice President Teddy Roosevelt, former President Grover Cleveland
and financier John D. Rockefeller, which stopped in Lincoln and then
moved on to Mount Pulaski for speeches, signing in at the Mount
Pulaski House Hotel (as proof by newspapers accounts and their
handwritten signatures in the old hotel register which is on display
in the Mount Pulaski Museum) their train car required
wider-sweeping curved tracks to be placed between Lincoln & Mount
Pulaski and Mount Pulaski & Springfield in order for the large
Presidential train car to negotiate the curves.
Elkhart's Adam Bogardus, who was world champion and United States
champion trap shooter as well as the inventor of the first practical
glass ball trap, who worked with Buffalo Bill Cody and his Wild West
Shows, and who earned his livelihood from hunting on and around
Elkhart hill sending his booty to Chicago and St. Louis via the
Illinois Central Railroad.
[to top of second column in this letter]
Elkhart's Edward's Trace on which the early Indians, settlers and
later Abraham Lincoln traveled from the Springfield area and below
on up through the Elkhart area to northern Illinois before and after
these towns were established which can yet be seen.
Chestnut as the Geo-physical center of the United States as per
research (1994) by a university student (and now so marked, there).
Middletown (Stagecoach Inn a visitor center) as the middle-stop of
Lincoln and other lawyers between the Peoria/Pekin vicinities and
the Capitol of Springfield, and also the site where the 1911 Vin Fiz
airplane stopped over from its famous trans-continental flight from
the east coast to the west coast.
Atlanta with famous 1856 Republican Rally for John C. Fremont, where
Abraham Lincoln spoke and where the Mount Pulaski Brass Band played,
and Atlanta's Hoblit Carriage House and Halfway house (still exists)
where lawyer Abraham Lincoln stayed over on his horseback and horse
& buggy trips.
Mount Pulaski's annual Christmas on Vinegar Hill celebration of
food, candies, and crafts.
Latham's Annual Fire Station Ice Cream & Cake Celebration.
Lake Fork's Annual Community Center Outdoor Sale and Indoor Country
Elkhart Hill's Annual Bird & Flower excursions.
Elkhart's Historical Society/Wild hare Café periodic
Mount Pulaski's on-going Illinois 8th Judicial Circuit Courthouse
(circa 1848 Illinois Historic site since 1936, open for visits &
tours) where lawyer's Abraham Lincoln, Judge David Davis, Stephen A.
Douglas and others practiced their craft.
Mount Pulaski's annual Memorial Day Services at its two beautiful
Mount Pulaski's annual 4th of July gala including city-wide garage
sales, music and evening fireworks.
Mount Pulaski's Annual Fall Festival (weekend after Labor Day),
which has been occurring annually since the late 1800's.
Mount Pulaski Annual Abraham Lincoln Birthday Celebration in the
Mount Pulaski Courthouse.
Therefore, as one can see from the above historical sites and annual
events, Logan County and many of its towns are vibrant places to
visit and enjoy for historians and/or families.
City of Mount Pulaski
Logan County Genealogical & Historical Society
Elkhart Historical Society
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