Lots of history at the center of
Christmas on Vinegar Hill
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[November 26, 2019]
During the 31st Annual Christmas on Vinegar
Hill held last Saturday, Nov. 23, the streets were filled in Mount
Pulaski. The fun filled shopping event has become so popular that in
recent years it has been expanded to outlying areas to include
Chestnut and Elkhart.
The greater number of vendors filled spaces near
and around the downtown with the American Legion building hosting
the most setups for shoppers.
The annual event also offers great opportunities to celebrate Mount
Pulaski's rich history. There was a steady crowd flowing through the
Historical Society and Museum building, though it might not have
been so much for an education as for trying to snare some
scrumptious take home dessert or a collectable ornament.
In the center of town, elevated on a hill above all other properties
is the main attraction in Mount Pulaski, the historic courthouse
where Abraham Lincoln conducted business during his years as a
circuit rider lawyer.
Logan County was yet a young county when Mount Pulaski became the
second official county seat and legal business was conducted at that
courthouse from the years 1848 - 1855.
Abraham Lincoln was the driving force who tenaciously led the
Illinois legislature to break Sangamon County into three counties,
thereby establishing Logan County in 1839.
The first county seat and courthouse was Postville. Mount Pulaski
began to grow with the railroads, and in the next election won the
county seat away from Postville.
meantime, the city of Lincoln was established in 1853. With its
founders naming the town for the former young state legislator, who
previously was instrumental in the development of the area as a
surveyor, and a well-known and loved circuit riding lawyer with wit
and charm, it stood to reason the city named for him would grow.
Come the next election after the naming of the city of Lincoln, the
county seat moved back north.
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The Mount Pulaski Courthouse has remained a treasure to the
community and the community values its place in history where the stories of
Abraham Lincoln are still told today.
Many of the visitors on Saturday were from a distance and for some it was their
first time to town. For a number of those a visit to the courthouse was on their
list. It was surely not a disappointment as from the moment they entered they
were greeted warmly by volunteers in period dress and supplied endless stories
of interest, and they got warm refreshments and sweets too boot.
Traditions of years past are relived and reinvented each year during the Mount
Pulaski Christmas on Vinegar Hill. No wonder the day has been so popular for
over 30 years.