Glen Ellyn

Historical Society


The History Center  800 N. Main St. Glen Ellyn, IL 60137

Story Time with Aunt Tillie

Tuesday, October 3   10:30 - 11:15 a.m.

Come join Aunt Tillie (Dr. Maria Bakalis from Curtain Up Classroom) with her endearing puppet, Grandma Trudy for a wonderful story time. Story Time is geared to 2 - 5 year-olds, but everyone young at heart is welcome. Caregivers are asked to stay with their children for this special story and activity time. Free! No reservations required -- just come! 

Ghosts of Lincoln: Discovering His Paranormal Legacy

Saturday, October 7   2:00 p.m.

For years, stories have circulated about Lincoln haunting the White House, attending seances, and predicting his own death. Investigating everything from obscure seance transcripts and forgotten newspaper articles to the most peculiar paranormal claims, author Adam Selzer digs deep into the annals of history and reveals the fascinating true stories behind the tales, rumors and lore. Come join us for a fascinating program! Refreshments. $10 Adults, $8 GEHS Members, $5 Students 18 and under

Hysteria in Salem: The Salem Witch Trials

Saturday, October 14   2:00 p.m.

In June of 1692, the special Court of Oyer (to hear) and Terminer (to decide) sat in Salem, Massachusetts to hear allegations of witchcraft. Presided over by Chief Justice William Stoughton, the court was made up of magistrates and jurors. The first to be tried was Bridget Bishop of Salem who was found guilty and was hanged on June 10. Thirteen women and five men from all stations of life followed her to the gallows on three successive hanging days before the court was disbanded by Governor William Phipps in October of that year. Join the chief magistrate of the Salem Witch Trials, John Hathorne (portrayed by actor and professional speaker Terry Lynch) as he recounts the hysteria, paranoia, and resulting trials that took place during the late-17th century in Salem. Refreshments. $10 Adults, $8 GEHS Members, $5 Students 18 and under

Madame Zelda Joins the Circus: Halloween Under the Big Top

A Fun Family Halloween Event for Families and Children

Saturday, October 21    1st show: 3 p.m.    2nd show: 4 p.m.

Join us for a special fun Halloween event for elementary children and their families, sponsored by Curtain Up Classroom in partnership with the Historical Society. Treat yourselves to a performance by Curtain Up Players, featuring Madame Zelda. Then travel back in time to a slightly "haunted" Stacy's Tavern Museum. Children are welcome to wear costumes -- adults too! $6 Adults/Teens; $5 for kindergarten/elementary school children (Ages 5 - 12);  children 4 and under are free! Buy tickets in advance at the History Center or on the day of the performance. The event lasts approximately one hour, and begins at the History Center. Both shows are the same -- choose the time that works best for you!

Book Discussion Group: The Birth of the Pill: How Four Crusaders Reinvented Sex and Launched a Revolution by Jonathan Eig

Thursday, November 2   10 a.m.

Readers know it simply as “the pill,” yet its development was anything but simple. Spanning the years from Margaret Sanger’s heady Greenwich Village days in the early twentieth century to trial tests in Puerto Rico in the 1950s to the cusp of the sexual revolution in the 1960s, this is a grand story of radical feminist politics, scientific ingenuity, establishment opposition, and, ultimately, a sea of change in social attitudes. Brilliantly researched and briskly written, The Birth of the Pill is gripping social, cultural, and scientific history. A Chicago Tribune "Best Books of 2014" Free! Everyone welcome.

Annual Business Meeting: Glen Ellyn Historical Society

Thursday, November 2    7:00 p.m.

Members of the Historical Society are invited for the annual business meeting, held at the History Center. The program will be on Marcellus Jones, the Danby resident who fired the first shot at the Battle of Gettysburg during the Civil War. Refreshments served. (Must be a current GEHS member to attend.)

Members Appreciation Day at Stacy's Corners Store

​Saturday,  Nov. 4  10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Members of the Glen Ellyn Historical Society will enjoy 25% off most of their purchases at Stacy's Corners Store ALL DAY LONG!  No coupon necessary. Just one of the many benefits of being a member!

It’s a Wonderful Life: The Making of a Holiday Classic 

Saturday, Nov. 4   2:00 p.m.

Did you know Cary Grant was supposed to star in It’s a Wonderful Life? That the famous gym-floor-turned-swimming-pool was real? That the movie bombed at the box office? Even if you’ve seen the classic holiday film 150 times, you’ll love this fun program that explores the story of the movie’s creation including how the script evolved, how the cast was chosen, and the technical challenges that were overcome. You'll find out what happened to the cast and enjoy rare photographs taken behind the scenes. Rediscover Frank Capra’s masterpiece like you’ve never seen it before. This is an illustrated lecture by beloved historian Leslie Goddard, Ph.D. Refreshments. $10 Adults, $8 GEHS Members, $5 Students 18 and under

Story Time with Aunt Tillie

Tuesday, Nov. 7   10:30 - 11:15 a.m.

Come join Aunt Tillie (Dr. Maria Bakalis from Curtain Up Classroom) with her endearing puppet, Grandma Trudy for a wonderful story time. Story Time is geared to 2 - 5 year-olds, but everyone young at heart is welcome. Caregivers are asked to stay with their children for this special story and activity time. Free! No reservations required -- just come! 

Second Annual Gingerbread House Contest

Attention all bakers and gingerbread lovers! The Historical Society is hosting its second annual gingerbread house contest. Categories are available for youth, teens and adults, for individuals and groups. Categories for Awards include: Best Group Entry, Best individual Entry by Age Group, Best Depiction of Glen Ellyn Building or Event, Best Depiction of Historical Building or Event, Best House for Dogs (or Other Companion Animals), Best House for Birds (or Wild Animals). Gingerbread creations will be on display at the Gingerbread and Candlelight Holiday Celebration on December 2nd. Complete rules are available at the History Center, or just email

Gingerbread and Candlelight: A Holiday Celebration for the Entire Family

Saturday, Dec. 2   4:00 - 7:00 p.m.

​This holiday open house runs from 4 -7 p.m. Begin at the Glen Ellyn History Center and see the wonderful Gingerbread House creations from our Gingerbread House Contest. Take a candlelight tour of Stacy's Tavern Museum. Enjoy our craft station for kids. Sip on hot chocolate (or coffee/tea) and enjoy some delicious cookies. Adults $5  Children free with paid adult admission.

​Story Time with Aunt Tillie

Tuesday, Dec. 5   10:30 - 11:15 a.m.

Come join Aunt Tillie (Dr. Maria Bakalis from Curtain Up Classroom) with her endearing puppet, Grandma Trudy for a wonderful story time. Story Time is geared to 2 - 5 year-olds, but everyone young at heart is welcome. Caregivers are asked to stay with their children for this special story and activity time. Free! No reservations required -- just come! 


Coming in 2018

Maria Callas, portrayed by Maria Boundas Bakalis

Saturday, March 3, 2018    2:00 p.m.

Maria Callas was a Greek-American soprano born in New York City in 1923, and one of the most renowned and influential opera singers of the 20th century. This internationally acclaimed singer captivated audiences with her iconic opera performances, showing off her vocal range in productions like Tosca and Norma. Callas made her Italian opera debut at the Verona Arena in 1947, followed by her 1954 American debut in Norma. On September 16, 1977, Callas died in Paris of a heart attack.Maria Callas:  "I am not an angel and do not pretend to be. That is not one of my roles. But I am not the devil either. I am a woman and a serious artist, and I would like so to be judged.” Maria Boundas Bakalis is a Glen Ellyn resident and the founder of the Curtain Up Classroom school of acting, and has portrayed Maria Callas abroad at international festivals, as well as in the United States. You are in for a real treat! Refreshments served. $10 Adults, $8 GEHS Members, $5 Students 18 and under

The Once and Future Woman: A Musical Performance by Kristin Lems in celebration of Women's History Month

Sat. March 10, 2018   2:00 p.m.

​Enjoy this celebration of American women of all kinds in a moving portrait of the lives of those who struggled and those who survived. Stories too little told, with much to be remembered -- and unforgettable songs! Kristin Lems is a versatile composer, songwriter, folksinger and performing artist from Evanston. Equally at home before vast crowds or in small living rooms, Kristin has shared the stage with two First Ladies, Maya Angelou, Captain Jacques Cousteau, Gloria Steinem, Helen Caldicott, and Alan Alda. Musicians she has performed with include Pete Seeger, Tom Morello, Malvina Reynolds, Holly Near, Dan Fogelberg, Laura Love, Koko Taylor, Peter Paul and Mary, Michele Shocked, the BoDeans, Simon Townshend and many others. New Yorker magazine called Kristin "a charmer in the most literal and least artificial sense of the word." Gloria Steinem named Kristin "a one woman argument against the notion that the women's movement doesn't have a sense of humor." The Illinois Times said, "Kristin not only has a beautiful voice, clear, crisp and forceful, but she is a very creative and thoughtful lyricist." And of Kristin's performances, The Evansville Courier said, "the performance was simple yet substantive, humorous, yet poignant, and always energetic and warm." Come join us for a wonderful and engaging musical program! Refreshments served. $10 Adults, $8 GEHS Members, $5 Students 18 and under

​Rachel Carson: The Woman Who Launched the Environmental Movement portrayed by Leslie Goddard

Sat. April 21, 2018    2:00 p.m.

Biologist and author Rachel Carson warned the world of the potentially dire environmental impact of chemical pesticides in her best-selling 1962 book, Silent Spring. In this brand-new living-history program, set in 1963, actress and historian Leslie Goddard portrays Carson as she discusses her childhood love for the living world, her passion for writing, and her work to awaken the world to the beauty and fragility of nature. Refreshments Served. $10 Adults, $8 GEHS Members, $5 Students 18 and under

Fifth Annual Vintage Auto Fest

Saturday, June 2, 2018   10 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Come out to our Vintage Auto Fest and see a great selection of antique and vintage vehicles. Enjoy delicious baked goods by Historical Society bakers. Tour Stacy's Tavern Museum. Shop at Stacy's Corners Store's annual sidewalk sale. Take your kids to our activity table for great coloring pages of vintage vehicles and more. This is a free event to the public. More information on registering your vehicle for the show will be coming in 2018.

Cinderella: A Curtain Up Classroom Production

​Friday, June 8

Saturday, June 9

Sunday, June 10

Curtain Up Classroom will once again offer students, ages 6 thru high school, and adults, the opportunity to perform in a wonderful production of a beloved play, Cinderella. More details, including audition dates, coming!

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Note: All events occur at the History Center at 800 N. Main St. Glen Ellyn, IL 60137 unless otherwise noted. Free parking is available at the building and on surrounding lots and streets. The History Center is wheelchair accessible and has wheelchair accessible restrooms.

Upcoming Events