KANE COUNTY HISTORY: Elgin Puts 3,500 Priceless Photos Online

KANE COUNTY HISTORY: Elgin Puts 3,500 Priceless Photos Online

  • Editor’s Note: Kane County has an amazing history and outstanding resources for local historians. This is Week 3 of Kane County Connects’ weekly series of articles written by representatives of local historical societies and history museums. Today’s article was submitted by Elizabeth Marston, director of the Elgin History Museum.

If a picture paints a thousand words, the Elgin History Museum is creating a War And Peace-sized collection of historic local photos, now available online.

In the fall of 2016, the Elgin History Museum received a grant for $24,770 from the Institute of Museum and Library Services to digitize the Gylleck Photo Collection.

Part of the grant funds cover uploading the digital images to the Illinois Digital Archives. With the help of photographer Bill Brown, who has been scanning the mounted photographs, the museum so far has posted more than 1,800 images on the Illinois Digital Archives website.

Volunteers Rebecca Miller and Jackie Marcus have been adding descriptions of the photos and helping to upload them to IDA. The Gylleck Photo Collection is important because of the wide time span it covers and the subjects of the photographs, a few of which are presented here.

To see more photographs, go to the Illinois Digital Archives website, click “BY INSTITUTION” to find the Elgin History Museum and then click “BROWSE” to see the collection.

Scanned images range from the 1840s to the 1960s, and more images are uploaded monthly. By the time the project ends this year, the museum will have 3,500 images available for the public to view.

As part of the grant, the Elgin History Museum has also added an online component to the museum’s website at www.elginhistory.org. Click on “Research” to see the museum collections. If you search by random, you can see hundreds of images in the museum’s collection.

About the Elgin History Museum

The Elgin History Museum is housed in an 1856 landmark building known as Old Main that was once part of the Elgin Academy campus. The museum has a staff that helps welcome visitors to the museum, educates the public about Elgin history and assists with research inquiries.

The Elgin Area Historical Society, which was founded in 1961, is a thriving organization that operates within the museum. The society has a board of directors with a mission that is driven to preserve and educate the community about Elgin history.

About The Institute of Museum and Library Services

The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s libraries and museums. The IMLS advances, supports, and empowers America’s museums, libraries, and related organizations through grant making, research, and policy development. Its vision is a nation where museums and libraries work together to transform the lives of individuals and communities. To learn more, visit www.imls.gov and follow on Facebook and Twitter.

Read The Series