March 2021
Collection Spotlight:
Women's History Month
In honor of Women's History Month, the Archives is taking a look at collections highlighting local women. Check out Dr. Ellen Miner's papers and examination ledger. Dr. Miner practiced gynecology and obstetrics in Champaign from 1896 until the 1920s! Learn more about Dr. Miner in this blog post.

Or, check out the digital exhibit, The Sisterhood, about a Jewish women's group that lasted over 100 years! They volunteered, fundraised for community organizations, and ran the Sunday School at Sinai Temple. More information about our Sinai Temple records can be found here.
Join author Maureen Holtz as she discusses her new book, Robert Allerton: His Parks and Legacies. Utilizing archival photographs, Holtz's book explores Allerton's homes and gardens in Monticello, Illinois, and on the island of Kauai, Hawaii.

In addition to Allerton's fascinating life and artistic vision, this talk will cover the properties' histories after Allerton's death.
From the Blog

Bettye Krolick (1926-2011) changed the world from her home in Champaign through her service to the national and international blind and visually impaired community - effects of which are still felt today. 

I came across Krolick’s story as I researched The Tuesday Morning Musical Club (TMMC), a women’s-only music recital club in Champaign-Urbana. (You can learn more about this club in the archives’ new exhibit, “From Homemaking to Municipal Housekeeping: Twentieth-Century Women’s Clubs in Champaign County.”) Krolick was very involved in the C-U music community even beyond the TMMC. A violinist by study, she played with the Champaign-Urbana Symphony (where she was first violinist) with her husband, Edward Krolick, and worked with multiple orchestras, including as “concertmaster of the Danville Symphony,” as stated by the News-Gazette. Krolick eventually moved to Colorado after living in the Champaign-Urbana community for many years, continuing to play music there.

In her 50s, Krolick was introduced to braille because of a class at the University of Illinois. According to a News-Gazette profile in 1976: “‘I taught myself the musical code,’ Mrs. Krolick explained, ‘and became a certified transcriber from the Library of Congress in both the music and literary codes.’” When Krolick was interviewed in the 1970s, she was one of less than a hundred living U.S. citizens to have that certification.
Ancestry Library Edition has extended access from home through March 31st for all library cardholders! Access Ancestry by following this link and logging in with your library card number.

Contact the Archives at 217-367-4025 or archives@urbanafree.org for help or questions.

On August 16, 1984, Chanute Air Force Base was selected, thanks to its central geographic location, as the venue for reuniting the 714th Bomb Squadron’s Crew 66. The reunion brought together nine out of ten of the original members. Crew members traveled to Chanute from Massachusetts, New York, Hawaii, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Ohio, and Champaign, Illinois. Eldon “Red” Preisel of Champaign was a technical sergeant at the time of the crew’s combat missions and served as a point person for planning the reunion at the base.

The squadron joined the war in 1944 as a part of a 1,000 man replacement unit. The ten-person crew flew in B-24 “heavies,” planes that bombed strategic targets with 500-pound packages. They flew 35 combat missions, with the last seven being in broad daylight over Berlin. Members of the crew recounted several close encounters on these dangerous missions. Their mission was to target industrial sites, including railroads, factories, and fuel plants. Following their 35th combat mission, the squad returned from their station in Yarmouth, England, fully intact.
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