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flag  History of Peoria, Illinois, USA

Journey back in time to Peoria, Illinois, USA

Visit Peoria, Illinois, USA. Discover its history. Learn about the people who lived there through stories, old newspaper articles, pictures, postcards and ancestry.

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Peoria, Illinois, USA - The Genuine Dr. C. McLanes Liver Pills for sale by W. R. Peck Chemist & Druggist 203 S. Madison St. Peoria, Ill.

Peoria, Peoria, Illinois, USA

Peoria is the oldest community in Illinois.

50states.com

There is MUCH more to discover about Peoria, Illinois, USA. Read on!

Peoria Nostalgia: Vintage Photos, Ads, and Postcards

The Genuine Dr. C. McLane's Liver Pills
for sale by
W. R. Peck
Chemist & Druggist
203 S. Madison
Peoria, Illinois, USA

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The Genuine Dr. C. McLane's Liver Pills
for sale by
W. R. Peck
Chemist & Druggist
203 S. Madison St.
Peoria, Ill.
Rhea, Smalley & Co.,
Wholesale Dealers in All Kinds of Farm Machinery
226 S. Washington and 120 Li
Peoria, Illinois, USA

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Rhea, Smalley & Co.,
Wholesale Dealers in All Kinds of Farm Machinery
226 S. Washington and 120 Liberty Sts., Peoria, Ill.
Yellow Dock Root
put up by Allaire-Woodward & Co., Peoria, Ill.
Peoria, Illinois, USA

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Yellow Dock Root
put up by Allaire-Woodward & Co., Peoria, Ill.
Valerian
put up by Allaire-Woodward & Co., Peoria, Ill.
Found at The Way It Was Museum, Virginia C
Peoria, Illinois, USA

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Valerian
put up by Allaire-Woodward & Co., Peoria, Ill.
Found at The Way It Was Museum, Virginia City, Nevada
It Bears the Brunt of Wash-Day work
The Peoria Washer
Clark, Quien & Morse
401 Commercial Street
Peoria, Illinois, USA

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It Bears the Brunt of Wash-Day work
The Peoria Washer
Clark, Quien & Morse
401 Commercial Street
Peoria, Ill.

The Ladies' Home Journal
May 1898
Lake, South Park, Peoria, Ill.
Peoria, Illinois, USA

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Lake, South Park, Peoria, Ill.
McKinley Bridge, Peoria, Ill.
Peoria, Illinois, USA

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McKinley Bridge, Peoria, Ill.
Views of Peoria, Ill.
Peoria, Illinois, USA

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Views of Peoria, Ill.

Discover Peoria: History, News, Travel, and Stories

Add informationAdd History/News/Story
1680 - Fort Crevecoeur (Peoria) founded
First European settlement in Illinois.
wikipedia.org
1813 - Fort Crevecoeur (Peoria) renamed Fort Clark

wikipedia.org
1823 - Fort Clark (Peoria) renamed Peoria

wikipedia.org
1830 - December 29 - A very heavy snowstorm ushered in the "winter of the deep snow." The storm produced 30 inches of snow at Peoria IL and 36 inches at Kansas City MO.

WeatherForYou.com
1854 - Peoria
Peoria, a handsome and flourishing city, capital of Peoria county, Illinois, on the right or W. bank of Illinois river, at the out let of Peoria lake, 70 miles N. from Spring field, and 151 S. W. from Chicago. It is the most populous town on the river, and one of the most important and commercial in the state. The river is navigable by steamboats in all stages of water, and is the channel of an immense trade in grain, lumber, pork, &c. A number of steamboats make regular pas sages between St. Louis and Peoria, which also communicates with Chicago, by means of the Illinois and Michigan canal. The Peoria and Oquawk railroad connects this place with Burlington, Iowa, and will be extended eastwardly to Middleport. The town is regularly laid out, and well built. It has, besides the county buildings, about 10 churches, several seminaries, a telegraph office, a bank, and 6 newspaper offices. We quote the fol lowing description from the letter of a recent traveller: — "Peoria is the most... Read MORE...

1895 - Peoria
Peoria, a city, the capital of Peoria co., Ill., is pleasantly situated on the W. bank of the Illinois River, at the lower end of Peoria Lake, about 65 miles N. of Springfield. By railroad it is 160 miles S.W. of Chicago, 53 miles E.S.E. of Galesburg, and 45 miles W.N.W. of Bloomington. It was in 1870 the third city of the state in population. It is at the junction of the following railroads: the Chicago, Pekin & Southwestern, the Peoria, Pekin & Jacksonville, the Peoria Branch of the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific, the Indianapolis, Bloomington & Western, the Peoria & Rock Island, the Illinois Midland, and the Galesburg & Peoria division of the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy. Steamboats ply regularly between this city and St. Louis, and also navigate the upper part of the river. Peoria. contains a court-house, a city hall, about 28 churches, a high school, the Peoria County Normal School, the mercantile library, 3 or 4 national banks, several large distilleries, breweries,... Read MORE...

1903 - EXPLOSION IN BIG PEORIA DISTILLERY KILLS FOUR, HURTS FIVE. ENTIRE NORTH WALL BLOWN DOWN, BUT FIRE FORTUNATELY IS AVERTED. TWO MEN STILL MISSING.
OF THOSE RESCUED ALIVE FROM RUINS, TWO DIE ON THE WAY TO COTTAGE HOSPITAL - HOW ACCIDENT OCCURRED.
THOUSANDS DRAWN TO SCENE.
COMPANY ESTIMATES ITS LOSS AT $75,000 AND IT WILL BE SEVERAL WEEKS BEFORE OPERATIONS ARE RESUMED.

Peoria, Oct. 3. - An awful catastrophe occurred at the plant of the Corning Distilling Company, in the extreme south end of the city, at 9 o'clock this morning, when one of the cookers in the main building exploded with a deafening report, killing four of the employes, maiming many more and completely wrecking that portion of the distillery.

Fire alarms were immediately sent in for the entire department, and patrol wagons and ambulances were hurriedly summoned.

Fortunately the wreckage did not take fire, and the firemen immediately assisted the distillery employes who had escaped in the rescue of their less fortunate fellow-workmen.

The cooker is a steel contrivance about 30 feet in diameter and 80 feet in length, used in cooking the mashes.

It is... Read MORE...

1906
Peoria, a city, the capital of Peoria co., Ill., is pleasantly situated on the W. bank of the Illinois River, at the lower end of Peoria Lake, 160 miles SW. of Chicago, on the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific, the Chicago, Peoria and St. Louis and other railroads. It has several notable public buildings, a public library with upward of 80,000 volumes, a soldiers' monument, etc., and is the seat of Bradley Polytechnic and Spalding Institutes. Peoria is an important manufacturing centre, with distilling as the leading industry. It has extensive manufactures of agricultural implements, beer, glucose and starch, carriages, furniture, automobiles, coffee-roasters, straw-board and paper, etc. It is an important shipping point for grain and is extensively engaged in meat-packing. Pop. in 1880, 29,259; in 1890, 41,024; in 1900, 56,100.
Lippincott's New Gazetteer: A Complete Pronouncing Gazetteer Or Geographical Dictionary of the World, Containing the Most Recent and Authentic Information Respecting the Countries, Cities, Towns ... in Every Portion of the Globe Publisher J.B. Lippincott Company, 1906
1909 - THREE KILLED IN NORTHWESTERN WRECK.
Peoria, Ill., Jan. 16. - Two extra freight trains on the Chicago and Northwestern collided head-on Friday evening four miles northwest of this city. Three trainmen were instantly killed, one is missing and believed to be in the wreckage, and two others were seriously injured.
The dead:
JOE CURTAIN, engineer, Sterling, Ill.
M. METZLER, fireman, home in Virginia.
J. A. RUSSELL, brakeman, Sterling, Illinois.
Missing believed to be in the wreckage:
W. J. WATSON, fireman, Chicago, Ill., serious; probably die.
No cause can definitely be assigned for the disaster, though it is generally believed it was a mistake in train orders.
The Daily Free Press
Carbondale, Illinois
January 16, 1909
1912 - TWENTY BRADLEY STUDENTS HURT. WHEN FLOOR COLLAPSES WHILE ON AN INSPECTION TRIP THROUGH DISTILLERY.
Peoria, April 13. - A score of students of the Bradley Polytechnic institute were injured, twelve seriously, when a floor collapsed at the Woelner distillery, throwing fifty young people to the ground. The party was inspecting the fermenting room. Every police patrol and ambulance in the city was rushed to the scene and a number of injured were taken to hospitals...
The Daily Review
Decatur, Illinois
April 13, 1912
1929 - THREE MISSING IN PEORIA FIRE. WATCHMAN AND TWO FIREMEN BELIEVED DEAD IN RUINS OF PEORIA MARKET.
Peoria, Ill. - (AP) - Fire destroyed the Peoria Market, a four-story brick building in the heart of the business district, early today. Three persons were missing and at least two of them were believed to have been killed when the building collapsed. Damage was estimated at $1,000,000.

Firemen TOM O'CONNOR and RICHARD TEUFEL were missing, the night watchman JOHN STRAYER, could not be found and it was feared he had been burned to death.

The fire broke out at 5 a.m. and quickly spread to the Block and Stahl department store, which adjoins the market. The department store was saved after every fire company in the city had been called out, but the damage to stock and furnishings was extensive. The Market was occupied by a number of retail stores and shops, the origin of the fire was not known.

The victims were two firemen, THOMAS O'CONNOR and RICHARD TEUFEL, killed when a stairway and wall collapsed, and the night watchman at the Market, MILTON STRAYER, who was found dead on the... Read MORE...

1935 - EXPLOSION AT DISTILLERY TAKES LIFE OF ONE MAN.
Peoria, Ill. - (AP) - The ruins cooled, workmen Wednesday sought to extricate the body of JOHN BARDON, 38, the single victim of an explosion and fire at the Hiram Walker distillery here.

BARDON'S body was found Tuesday night by searchers directed by his brother, CHARLES, but salvage workers were unable to extract it from beneath the charred wreckage of a rackhouse where the blaze started.
Officials of the company and authorities continued investigations as to the cause of the fire which caused $2,700,000 damage in buildings and whisky destroyed.
La Crosse Tribune
La Crosse, Wisconsin
July 24, 1935
1953 - February 1 - WEEK TV channel 25 in Peoria, IL (NBC) begins broadcasting

historyorb.com
2023 - Peoria has a bunch of cool spots and activities to check out. Whether you're into nature, history, or just want to have a good time, there's something for everyone. Here's a list to get you started:
Peoria Riverfront:

Take a stroll along the scenic Riverfront and enjoy the views of the Illinois River.
Grab a bite at one of the local restaurants with outdoor seating.

Caterpillar Visitor Center:

Explore the history of Caterpillar Inc., one of the world's leading manufacturers of construction and mining equipment.
Check out their interactive exhibits and learn about the company's innovations.

Peoria Zoo:

Spend a day at the Peoria Zoo with over 200 species of animals.
Don't miss the Africa! exhibit and the Tropics building.

Grand View Drive:

Take a drive along the "World's Most Beautiful Drive" for stunning views of the Illinois River Valley.

Wildlife Prairie Park:

Experience nature and wildlife in this 2,000-acre zoological park.
Enjoy hiking, fishing, and exploring the scenic landscapes.

Peoria Historical Society Old House Tours:

If you're into history, take a guided tour of one of the historical homes in Peoria.

Spirit of Peoria Riverboat... Read MORE...

Discover MY Roots: Peoria Ancestry

Ancestors Who Were Born or Died in Peoria, Illinois, USA

We currently have information about ancestors who were born or died in Peoria.

View Them Now (sorted by year of birth)



male ancestorAlbert S SALISBURY (27 June 1829, , New York, USA - 11 April 1913, Peoria, Illinois, USA)
female ancestorRosina Sylvena TRUESDELL (20 May 1841, Conway, Massachusetts, USA - 16 January 1887, Peoria, Illinois, USA)
female ancestorMary Jane KEATS (17 February 1843, Oswego, New York, USA - 28 June 1920, Peoria, Illinois, USA)
photo of Nancy Catherine WILSONNancy Catherine WILSON (21 August 1849, Bowling Green, Kentucky, USA - 22 November 1922, Peoria, Illinois, USA)
female ancestorElizabeth MILEY (August 1854, , Switzerland - 11 September 1928, Peoria, Illinois, USA)
female ancestorIda SLATER SALISBURY (8 January 1860, Peoria, Illinois, USA - 4 July 1937, Peoria, Illinois, USA)
male ancestorRudolf PFEIFFER (28 January 1860, Peoria, Illinois, USA - 21 January 1938, Peoria, Illinois, USA)
female ancestorJessie May HOLLINGSWORTH (23 June 1861, Peoria, Illinois, USA - 23 March 1927, Hollywood, Florida, USA)
male ancestorGeorge HELLE (19 May 1863, Meppin, Germany - 8 December 1937, Peoria, Illinois, USA)

Genealogy Resources for Peoria

Illinois Newspapers

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Updated: 10/11/2023 10:18:18 AM