+1.630.469.1867

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

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​​Upcoming Events


​Project 231: A Story of Elgin's African American Heritage

Saturday, February 22   2 - 4 p.m.

Project 2-3-1 is a 75-minute documentary from Grindstone Productions that begins with Civil War “contrabands” who were the first African Americans to Elgin, and continues to the present day. Part of the story are two boxcars, three blocks, and one city: 2-3-1. This award winning film is filled with enthralling stories, amazing history and wonderful photographs that tells a rich history. Following the film, representatives of the Elgin Historical Society will be on hand to answer your questions. Refreshments. Admission $5. Tickets at the door day of program.


Auditions for Curtain Up Classroom's "The Wiz-dom of Oz"

Sunday, March 1

1:30 p.m. - 2:15 p.m. Grades 2-3

2:30 p.m. - 3:15 p.m. Grades 4-5

3:30 p.m. - 4:15 p.m. Grades 6-8

4:30 p.m. - 5:15 p.m. High School and Adults

Curtain Up Classroom will be holding auditions for their production of "The Wiz-dom of Oz" on March 1st at the History Center at 800 N. Main St. Auditions will involve improvisation, pantomime and script reading. No prepared monologues are needed. No headshots are needed. For information, call 630-234-2776 or visit www.curtainupclassroom.org. Show dates will be Thursday and Friday, June 11 and 12 (evenings) with a Saturday matinee on June 13th. Offered in partnership with the Glen Ellyn Historical Society.


Book Discussion Group

​Thursday, March 5    10:00 a.m.

Mr. President, How Long Must We Wait?: Alice Paul, Woodrow Wilson, and the Fight for the Right to Vote
A Biography by Tina Cassidy


Examines the complex relationship between suffragist leader Alice Paul and President Woodrow Wilson, revealing the life-risking measures that Paul and her supporters endured to gain voting rights for American women. This group is open to everyone. While it is a lot more fun if you have read the book, if you have an interest in the topic, you are welcome to join in the discussion. Free! Just come!


Discovering Marie Curie: A One-Woman Play by Dr. Maria Boundas Bakalis

​Saturday, March 7      2 p.m.

​"Discovering Marie Curie” pays tribute to this singular woman’s scientific achievements, and reveals her devotion to husband and scientist Pierre Curie, her homeland Poland, her family, and her immense compassion for all of humanity. Playwright and actor Maria Boundas Bakalis portrays this extraordinary woman’s life, a life dedicated to the pursuit of scientific discovery. It also explores her role in promoting the education of women, and her passionate desire to inspire scientific inquiry as a means to a better the world. Adults $10, GEHS Members $8, Students 18 and under $5. Tickets will be available for purchase at the door. Refreshments served.           


Storytime and Fun with Aunt Tillie

Tuesday, March 10   10:30 a.m. - 11:15 a.m.

This children's time is geared toward 2 - 5 year olds, but anyone young at heart is welcome to attend. Aunt Tillie (Dr. Maria Boundas Bakalis of CurtainUp Classroom) will engage with your young children, read them a story, make a craft, and have fun with them! Adults are asked to stay with their children. Free! No reservations required.


Wail of the Banshee: Tales of Celts and Druids 

A St. Patrick's Day Celebration

​Saturday, March 14    2 p.m. 

Hear ghostly Irish legends from professional actor and speaker Terry Lynch -- a regular presenter at GEHS -- as he brings scary tales of the Emerald Isle to life. These Celtic stories and myths include Dearg Due (the Irish vampire), The Dullahan (the headless horseman), and Aillen Mac Midgna (a fire-breathing goblin). An entertaining afternoon!  Refreshments served. Tickets are $6 for purchase at the door. (Note: This program is for adults. Youth are welcome to attend with a parent/caregiver. We don't want anyone having nightmares!)


Coffee with the Cops

Saturday, April 4 at 8 a.m. at the Glen Ellyn History Center

Once a month, the Chief of Police and/or the Deputy Chief of Police provide residents with the opportunity to interact with law enforcement personnel in a non-enforcement environment. Participants can talk about neighborhood issues, seek information on various police programs, and learn about specific police duties and responsibilities. In celebration of the opening of the new jail exhibit, the April discussion will occur at the History Center.


Grand Opening: Glen Ellyn Civic Center Jail Exhibit at the History Center

Saturday, April 4   10 a.m. - 1 p.m.

On Saturday, April 4, Stacy’s Corners Store at the Glen Ellyn History Center at 800 N. Main St. will have the grand opening of a new exhibit on the “old” Glen Ellyn jail. Originally located in the Civic Center, the jail was closed after decades of use when the new Glen Ellyn Police Department building was opened in 2017. Part of the original jail at the Civic Center has been reconstructed at the Historical Society, including cell doors, a bunk, toilet, and the wooden bench in the holding area. In partnership with the Glen Ellyn Police Department, the exhibit will have its grand opening from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. The Chamber of Commerce will have a ribbon cutting at 10:30 a.m. The Police Department will have police vehicles on site. There will be activities for kids. And bring your cameras, because there will be a great photo opportunity in the old jail cell. Everyone is welcome to this free event. No reservations required. Just come!


Smithsonian Museum Day Live!

Saturday, April 4   1:30 - 4:30 p.m.

The Glen Ellyn Historical Society partners with the Smithsonian Magazine for this annual event, where admission is free for two people to local museums on April 4th, 2020. Just visit their website and download a free ticket, print it out or show it on your phone. This event is designed for individuals and families; we regret that we cannot schedule group tours for this event.


Storytime and Fun with Aunt Tillie

Tuesday, April 14  10:30 a.m. - 11:15 a.m

This children's time is geared toward 2 - 5 year olds, but anyone young at heart is welcome to attend. Aunt Tillie (Dr. Maria Boundas Bakalis of CurtainUp Classroom) will engage with your young children, read them a story, make a craft, and have fun with them! Adults are asked to stay with their children. Free! No reservations required.


Emmett Till: Spark of the Modern Civil Rights Movement

Saturday, April 18  2 p.m.

Find out why many historians believe the murder of a 14-year-old Chicago boy in 1955 was a major contributor in the development of the modern civil rights movement. Mike Small and his wife Tina were very close to Emmett’s mother, Mamie Till, until her death in 2003. (Mike was a pall bearer at her funeral.) Being involved in the Emmett Till story for close to twenty years, they have made presentations all over the world including universities and high schools. They helped to establish the “Emmett Till Trail” in Mississippi and played a major role in re-opening the Emmett Till case in 2007. Mike and Tina have been featured on NBC TV several times. Refreshments. Free. (We had many people find the August 2019 program moving and powerful, and heard many from others saying they wish they could have been there -- so we have already rescheduled Mike and Tina to return in April.)


GEHS Volunteer Appreciation Dinner

Tuesday, April 28   6 p.m.

All recent Historical Society volunteers are invited to attend our annual appreciation dinner. We will have dinner at 6 p.m. followed by special entertainment: Martina Mathisen, and a fun program! Please R.S.V.P. to our director, Karen Hall, at director@gehs.org to let her know you are coming. 


Memoirs of the Holocaust: George Mueller's Time in WWII

Saturday, May 2   2 p.m.

Please join us to hear long-time Glen Ellyn resident George Mueller speak as he shares his experiences with us from World War II. George Mueller is the survivor of three Nazi concentration camps during World War II including Bergen Belsen. Learn about his experiences and how he came to terms with the shattering effect the Holocaust had on his life. He emerged from tragedy to embody a profound story of hope. Mr. Mueller is the 2019 winner of the Glen Ellyn Chamber of Commerce Paul Herwaldt Senior Citizen of the Year Award. Refreshments. Free. Reservations not required -- please join us.


​Book Discussion Group

Thursday, May 7     10:00 a.m.

The Other Side of the River: A Story of two towns, a death, and America's dilemma
An Historical Case Study by  Alex Kotlowitz

Discusses the impact on a community's race relations when a young African-American is found murdered near a river which separates two Michigan towns; one predominantly white and prosperous and the other African-American and impoverished.
This group is open to everyone. While it is a lot more fun if you have read the book, if you have an interest in the topic, you are welcome to join in the discussion. Free! Just come!


Storytime and Fun with Aunt Tillie

Tuesday, May 12  10:30 a.m. - 11:15 a.m.

This children's time is geared toward 2 - 5 year olds, but anyone young at heart is welcome to attend. Aunt Tillie (Dr. Maria Boundas Bakalis of CurtainUp Classroom) will engage with your young children, read them a story, make a craft, and have fun with them! Adults are asked to stay with their children. Free! No reservations required.


Seventh Annual Vintage Auto Fest 

​Saturday, June 6

10 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Come join us at the 7th Annual Glen Ellyn Vintage Auto Fest! The event will be held on Saturday, June 6, 2020 from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. Admission is free to visitors attending the show. (Interested in registering your vehicle? See below.) The show has great vintage vehicles on display in the space between Stacy's Tavern Museum and the Glen Ellyn History Center. And much, much more!

*Free talks on automobile history will be happening in the History Center
*Enjoy lunch by Heavenly Hot Dogs from 11 - 2
*Annual bake sale by members/bakers of the Historical Society
*Annual Sidewalk Sale at Stacy's Corners Store, the gift shop of the Historical Society
*An activity center for children to color drawings of vintage vehicles

Interested in registering your vintage/antique vehicle for our show? Please submit $10.00 per vehicle with check or money order payable to the Glen Ellyn Historical Society, along with your registration form (or you can call us with your credit card information). The registrant will receive 2 free tickets to Stacy’s Tavern Museum to be used during 2020, a discount coupon for Stacy’s Corners Store, and a dash plaque. (Vehicle registration at the gate will be $15.00 and the dash plaque will not be guaranteed.) Local Packard, Studebaker and Cadillac Club members will be attending and all vintage, antique and classic vehicles and clubs are welcome. Registrants will vote on Best of Show awards to be given at 2:45 p.m. 

For more information about the event, contact Karen Hall, Executive Director, Glen Ellyn Historical Society at 630-469-1867 or director@gehs.org or Jim Manak, Secretary, Packards of Chicagoland, lelp@xnet.com, 630-858-6092. To receive a printable registration form you can mail in or email, email Karen at director@gehs.org or call 630-469-1867, or pick one up at the Historical Society at 800 N. Main St. Glen Ellyn. (Open 10 - 5, Tuesday thru Saturday)


​Second Annual Vintage and Antique Market: A GEHS Fundraiser 

June 18 - 20, Thursday thru Saturday   10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

​(Items may be donated June 10 - 13, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.)

The Historical Society will have a fundraising sale selling vintage and antique items which have been donated to us for this purpose. The sale will be held in the Anderson Multi-Purpose Room at the History Center, 800 N. Main St. during business hours, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m., June 18 - 20. Come check out all the unique finds! 

Would you like to contribute to the sale? Vintage and antique items in good condition can be brought to the History Center June 10 - 13th from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Remaining items that are left after the end of the sale will either be retained by the Historical Society for future sale or be donated to local charities. Small items like jewelry and collectibles can be accepted for sale prior to the 10th, but furniture and large items will need to be brought on the 10th - 13th. As a guide to item donors: while the term "vintage" does not refer to a specific set of years, for this sale we are suggesting 1970's and earlier. Questions? Contact Karen Hall at director@gehs.org or 630.469.1867.


Book Discussion Group

​Thursday, July 9     10:00 a.m.

​The Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America's Shining Women
Historical Non-Fiction by Kate Moore


As WWI raged across the globe, hundreds of young women toiled away at the radium-dial factories, where they painted clock faces with a mysterious new substance called radium. Assured by their bosses that the luminous material was safe, the women themselves shone brightly in the dark. As the fatal poison of the radium took hold, they found themselves embroiled in one of America's biggest scandals and a groundbreaking battle for workers' rights. This group is open to everyone. While it is a lot more fun if you have read the book, if you have an interest in the topic, you are welcome to join in the discussion. Free! Just come!


Book Discussion Group

​Thursday, September 3     10:00 a.m.
The Heartland: An American History
Historical/Political Non-Fiction by Kristin L. Hoganson


A history of a quintessentially American place - the rural and small town heartland -- that uncovers deep yet hidden currents of connection with the world. It speaks volumes about pressing preoccupations, among them identity and community, immigration and trade, and security and global power. And food. This group is open to everyone. While it is a lot more fun if you have read the book, if you have an interest in the topic, you are welcome to join in the discussion. Free! Just come!


Sally Rand and the 1933 World's Fair 

Thursday, Sept. 10    7 p.m.

Learn the rags to riches story of Sally Rand, the feather dancer who crashed the 1933 Chicago World's Fair and became famous overnight. Author William Hazelgrove will be talking about the subject of his newest book, Sally Rand: American Sex Symbol. Sally Rand would appear in more than thirty films and be named after a Road Atlas by Cecil B. DeMille. A football play would be named after her. She would appear on To Tell the Truth. She would be arrested six times in one day for indecency. She would be immortalized in the final scene of The Right Stuff, cartoons, popular culture, and live on as the iconic symbol of the Chicago World's Fair of 1933. She would pave the way for every sex symbol to follow from Marilyn Monroe to Lady Gaga. She would die penniless and in debt. In the end, Sammy Davis Jr. would write her a $10,000 check when she had nothing left. Her name was Sally Rand. Until now, there has not been a biography of Sally Rand. She broke the mold in 1933, by proclaiming the female body as something beautiful and taking it out of the strip club with her ethereal fan dance. She was a poor girl from the Ozarks who ran away with a carnival, then joined the circus, and finally made it to Hollywood where Cecil B DeMille set her on the road to fame with silent movies. When the talkies came her career collapsed, and she ended up in Chicago, broke, sleeping in alleys. Two ostrich feathers in a second-hand store rescued her from obscurity. Come enjoy a fascinating story. The author will have books for sale and will sign after the presentation. William Hazelgrove is the bestselling author of ten novels and three works of nonfiction. Refreshments served. $8 Adults, $6 GEHS Members 



Pioneer Day: A Living History Celebration of Stacy's Tavern Museum

​Sunday, September 27   1- 4:30 p.m.

Come see what life was like for the early settlers of Glen Ellyn, on the same spot where early residents lived! Try your hand at 1840's life. There will be live farm animals, craft-making for kids, make your own candles, corn shelling, apple peeling, help with vegetable harvest, pioneer games and toys, how to rope a bed, do laundry 1840’s style, experience 1840's school in an outdoor classroom, make rope, tour the Tavern, and much, much more! Adults $8, GEHS Members $6; Children (3-17) $4, GEHS Members Children $3; children under 3 are free.


​Votes for Women: The 72-Year Struggle for Women's Suffrage

A Leslie Goddard Illustrated Lecture

Thursday, October 8   7 p.m.

Celebrating 100 years of women's suffrage in cooperation with The Glen Ellyn League of Women Voters

​At a time when voting can feel more like an obligation than a privilege, we can easily forget that it took 72 years for American women to win the right to vote. This illustrated slide lecture explores the long struggle from 1848 – when the first call was issued at Seneca Falls – to 1920, when women finally gained suffrage. In the ensuing years, women worked tirelessly, giving speeches, writing letters and petitions, gathering signatures by the thousands, and persevering in the face of strident opposition. Some were jailed and even beaten. You will never find voting inconvenient again. This is a free event; advance reservations are requested to ensure sufficient seating. Refreshments.


Book Discussion Group 

​Thursday, November 5    10:00 a.m.
The First Wave: The D-Day Warriors Who Led the Way to Victory in World War II
Biography by Alex Kershaw


The First Wave follows the remarkable men who carried out D-Day's most perilous missions. The first to fight when the stakes were highest and the odds longest, these men would determine the fate of the invasion of Hitler's Fortress Europe--and the very history of the twentieth century.  For the seventy-fifth anniversary, here is a fresh take on WWII's longest day. This group is open to everyone. While it is a lot more fun if you have read the book, if you have an interest in the topic, you are welcome to join in the discussion. Free! Just come!


Christmas in the Movies

A Leslie Goddard Program

Saturday, November 7    2 p.m.

Nothing brings the holidays alive quite like a great holiday movie. What are the best and most beloved holiday films of all time? Join historian Leslie Goddard for an illustrated lecture and review of the book Christmas in the Movies by Jeremy Arnold. We’ll look back at some Hollywood classics --  including Holiday Inn, Miracle on 34th Street, A Christmas Story, Elf, White Christmas, and others -- to explore what makes each one a “Christmas movie”. Learn behind-the-scenes stories about each movie’s production, reception and legacy. It’s a glorious salute to why we love it when Hollywood does the holidays. Refreshments. $10 Adults, $8 GEHS Members, $5 Students 18 and under.


Just a note: Have many of the events on this list happened already? Your browser may be bringing up a cached version of the web page. You can refresh the page, or bring up an incognito window with your browser and try again. We try to update this page weekly to keep events current. Not sure? Just call us at 630-469-1867. Thanks!

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 History Center, behind Stacy's Tavern Museum, and on surrounding lots and streets. The History Center is wheelchair accessible and has wheelchair accessible restrooms.

While there is usually sufficient parking among the lots/streets in the area, if you have mobility concerns, you may want to be dropped off at our front door or arrive early enough to park in the lot surrounding the History Center. Large event attendance may require walking a couple of blocks to the building. At 800 N. Main St., we are near Forest Glen Elementary School and across the street from a 7/11 Convenience Store, a block south of St. Charles and Geneva Roads in Glen Ellyn.

Upcoming Events



Glen Ellyn

Historical Society