The First Lincoln-Douglas Marker

    

     In 1908 the State Historical Society started a movement to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the Lincoln-Douglas speeches throughout the state. Officers of the Woodford County Historical Society decided that the logical place for holding the celebration in Woodford County would be in Metamora where the speeches were actually made.

A bronze memorial tablet placed in a concrete base read:

SPOKE HERE

DOUGLAS-LINCOLN

OCT. 2, 1858 OCT. 9, 1858

DEDICATED BY OLD SETTLERS'

AND HISTORICAL ASSOCIATIONS

OF WOODFORD COUNTY, ILLINOIS

AUGUST 27, 1908

     This historic data was dedicated and unveiled during the Old Settlers' Days celebration on August 27, 1908. A souvenir watch fob was sold for a dollar to defray the cost of erecting the memorial tablet in the Village Park. However, many people objected to the price of the fob not realizing the worthiness of the cause.

     The Metamora Herald reported that beautiful weather, good bands, great speeches greeted about six thousand visitors on this commemorative day.

     It was noted that the dates on the tablet were incorrect. The dates should have read Spoke Here--Douglas September 30 and Lincoln October 4, 1858.

     The tablet was torn down in July, 1931 and was placed in the masonry of the new cobblestone bandstand being erected at the time. The tablet today can be seen to the right of the steps going up into the bandstand. The sheet iron box containing records and story of the celebration were found to be a mass of wet paper pulp. The box had rusted through.

History and photo submitted by Shirley A. Adams. 

 
Back to Parks
Send any old photos and related stories concerning the Metamora Village Park to Shirley A. Adams, PO Box 288, Metamora, IL 61548.

Home // Membership // Stevenson Home Project // Marketplace // Newsletters // Metamora History // History Resources // Events // Prominent People // Yesteryears // Parks