Early on Friday morning, March 22, 2019, the Glen Ellyn Police Department received an alarm from the security system at the Glen Ellyn History Center. Upon investigating, they found that a four-inch pipe from the fire suppression system had burst and water was gushing into the History Center.
This old IGA store has a basement, which served like a funnel to collect water -- at first. With over 6 feet of water in the basement, the basement was a total loss. While it housed items like books for our store, holiday decorations, special event items, serving and kitchen items, we were fortunate that it did not hold any historic artifacts or documents.
The water quickly spread to literally every inch of the History Center, with at least 2" - 3" of standing water -- and mud -- throughout the entire building.
Cleanup continues. Many thanks to the Village of Glen Ellyn, the Glen Ellyn Volunteer Fire Company, the Glen Ellyn Police Department and to everyone who has come forward to offer assistance. We have been truly touched by everyone's generous support.
You will see ServPro trucks and staff there throughout the week. We have not been fully able to assess the damage yet, as water has gone into the walls, electrical boxes are shut down, etc. In other words, it's a mess! But we are grateful to ServPro who is doing a wonderful job.
The building will be closed for at least two weeks. All rentals scheduled for the next two weeks have been cancelled. Our program on Emmett Till originally scheduled for March 30th has been rescheduled for August 24th.
In the meantime, if you would like to contribute to the cleanup and recovery efforts, a donation may be made through PayPal by clicking above, or mailing a check to GEHS, 800 N. Main St. Glen Ellyn, IL 60137. (Insurance only covers so much....)
Thanks for your patience, understanding and support as we move forward.
Karen Hall, Executive Director
Here's an update on what's been happening at the History Center.
First, our program by Mike Small on Emmett Till for this Saturday has been rescheduled for Saturday, August 24 at 2 p.m.
The grand opening of the Civic Center jail exhibit scheduled for early April has been postponed, with a new date to be set later.
The History Center, Stacy's Corners Store, and Stacy's Tavern Museum will be closed indefinitely. We will let you know when they re-open.
Right now, we expect the History Center to be closed at least the entire month of April. All April rentals and programs have to be cancelled or relocated. We are unsure yet about May -- it is too early to tell.
The good news: most of our historic documents and artifacts related to the history of Glen Ellyn have been saved. We are now trying to save as many as possible of those that have been damaged.
Electricity was turned on in the building this morning.
ServPro has finished with the initial stabilization of the building. All walls have been opened up to allow them to dry. The insulation in the lower walls has been removed. All carpeting has been removed.
We still do not have phone or internet service at the History Center, so it will take us longer to respond to your calls and emails than usual. Our focus has really been on saving Glen Ellyn's history -- that remains our top priority.
The outpouring of support from the community has been very moving, and I hope you know how much it has touched us.
Much gratitude for everything -- and we really mean that! We will keep you posted.
Karen Hall, Executive Director
Here's another update.
Saturday morning's Coffee with the Cops has been relocated to the Glen Ellyn Police Station at 65 S. Park Blvd.
The Flooding in March 2019
Glen Ellyn Historical Society © 2013