Events

6/1 Mt. Thabor Cemetery Walk

06/01/2024 09:00 AM - 10:30 AM CT
  • $10.00
Mt. Thabor Cemetery
5311 Mount Thabor Road
Woodstock, IL
Join local historian and McHenry County cemetery expert Trudie Dryer as she takes you on a walking tour of one of the County's first Catholic cemeteries. Learn about its origins and the exciting and sometimes tragic lives of the adults and children buried there. Parking is limited at this location, so registration is limited to 30. Rain Date 6/2 1 - 230pm

6/1 Linn-Hebron Cemetery Walk

06/01/2024 09:00 AM - 10:30 AM CT
  • $20.00
Pioneer Cemetery
11411 Hillside Road
Hebron, IL 60034
Join Hebron cemetery expert Dawn Milarski as she takes you on a walking tour of the Linn-Hebron Cemetery 2 miles west of Hebron. Set high on a hill, the cemetery was in use as early as 1846, is still active, and has room for expansion. There are notable residents buried at the Linn Hebron Cemetery, including Revolutionary War Soldier Major Watson and WW II Soldier Elmer Bigelow. It is also the resting place of Samuel John Mills Nichols, the wealthiest farmer in the Linn and Hebron area. His land is most noted as 'Nichols Point," now known as the famous "Black Point."

Attendees will receive an email confirmation of registration and an email with a map, map coordinates, parking, and additional instructions before the event.
Rain Date 6/2/24 1 - 2:30.

6/8 Pioneer Cemetery Walk

06/08/2024 09:00 AM - 10:30 AM CT
  • $10.00
Pioneer Cemetery
15686 W South Street Rd
Woodstock, IL 60098
Join local historian and McHenry County cemetery expert Trudie Dryer as she takes you on a walking tour where you will revisit the lives of Civil War soldiers, learn about the purpose and residents of the Potter’s field, and discuss the lives of some of those interred, for whom Oakland was not their first place of cemetery residence! Rain Date 5/19/24 1 - 2:30

2024 Speaker Series: Chicago - Lake Geneva: A 100 Year Road Trip

06/15/2024 01:00 PM - 02:00 PM CT
  • $10.00
McHenry County History Museum
6422 Main Street
Union, IL 60180
In 1905, Homer Sargent Michaels, an automobile agent based in Chicago, developed an unusual solution to one of the thorniest problems facing early motorists: finding one’s way from one city to another along the poorly marked rural roads of the time. Michaels’s solution was to take photographs of every major intersection or turning point along a given route. The Chicago Map Society, in collaboration with the Newberry Library, has compiled a new edition of one of Michaels’s 1905 guides showing the route from Chicago to Lake Geneva, a resort town in southern Wisconsin. This new edition reproduces the entire guide, along with brief explanations and new photographs of the same locations. Today, a new edition of one of Michaels’s 1905 guides shows the route from Chicago to Lake Geneva, a resort town in southern Wisconsin. This program will be presented by author and historian Wilbert Stroeve and uses one of these guides from 1905 to navigate from Chicago to Lake Geneva and Beloit. It shows a Chicago-Lake Geneva region that has been transformed - and even more remarkable, a few scenes that have remained unchanged. The original maps and modern maps help you carefully retrace the route.

2024 Heritage Fair

07/14/2024 09:00 AM - 03:00 PM CT
  • Free
McHenry County History Museum
6422 Main Street
Union, IL 60180
The McHenry County Historical Society & Museum marks its 38th Annual Heritage Fair from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, July 14, 2024, at the Museum, 6422 Main Street in Union, Illinois.

Highlights include:

9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Free Museum admission all day, including new exhibits
9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Garden Glitz summer plant sale 
10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Vintages sale of one-of-a-kind deaccessioned items, books, and a silent auction of rare items
9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Children's educational activities & games
9 a.m. - 2 p.m. Multiple food vendors  
9 a.m. - 3 p.m. All new Vintage Car Show
 As in the past, the Fair and car show are free to attend. The car show will feature sports, classic, and antique cars. The day also features free admission to the museum, including our newest exhibits, the 1895 West Harmony School and the 1843 Gannon log cabin. In addition, an Illoins Master Gardener docent in period costume will answer questions about the Pioneer Garden planted and maintained by the University of Illinois Cooperative Extension. Food and beverages will be available for purchase from vendors.

2024 Heritage Fair Vintage Car Show

07/14/2024 09:00 AM - 03:00 PM CT
  • Free
McHenry County History Museum
6422 Main Street
Union, IL 60180
The McHenry County Historical Society & Museum marks its 38th Annual Heritage Fair from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, July 14, 2024, at the Museum, 6422 Main Street in Union, Illinois.

Highlights include:

9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Free Museum admission all day, including new exhibits
9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Garden Glitz summer plant sale 
10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Vintages sale of one-of-a-kind deaccessioned items, books, and a silent auction of rare items
9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Children's educational activities & games
9 a.m. - 2 p.m. Multiple food vendors  
9 a.m. - 3 p.m. All new Vintage Car Show
 As in the past, the Fair and car show are free to attend. The car show will feature sports, classic, and antique cars. The day also features free admission to the museum, including our newest exhibits, the 1895 West Harmony School and the 1843 Gannon log cabin. In addition, an Illoins Master Gardener docent in period costume will answer questions about the Pioneer Garden planted and maintained by the University of Illinois Cooperative Extension. Food and beverages will be available for purchase from vendors.

2024 Speaker Series: The Correspondence of Harley Wayne

08/24/2024 01:00 PM - 02:00 PM CT
  • $10.00
McHenry County History Museum
6422 Main Street
Union, IL 60180
Join author and MCHS Board member Bob Frenz as he discusses his recent book, The Correspondence of Harley Way. Bob will take you through his first "meeting" as a young college student with Union, Illinois' most notable resident, and how this interest blossomed into finding Harley's beautiful home and the then-current owners Constance and Leo Parenti. He will recount how he spent a couple of lovely afternoons with the Parenti's, learning about the house and the man who built it in 1858. The Parenti's lovingly restored the home and related stories about the Wayne family and the house, even showing us drawings on a cellar wall made by Harley's son, Charley, over a century earlier. This house still stands in Union today.

Now, over a half-century later, Bob is still fascinated by a man who, at age 20, left his parents to embark on a harrowing journey to Illinois and then, at age 38, left his wife and child to begin an even more perilous campaign to help save the Union.

2024 Cider Fest

10/06/2024 10:00 AM - 02:00 PM CT
  • Free
McHenry County History Museum
6422 Main Street
Union, IL 60180
The McHenry County Historical Society & Museum marks its 47th Annual Heritage Fest from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, October 6, 2024, at the Museum, 6422 Main Street in Union, Illinois.

2024 Speaker Series: Chicago & Northwestern Railway: Union to Marengo

10/12/2024 01:00 PM - 02:00 PM CT
  • $10.00
McHenry County History Museum
6422 Main Street
Union, IL 60180
When William Butler Ogden contemplated building the first railroad out of Chicago to Galena, he wanted to reach Elgin on the Fox River first. From there he needed a right of way with easy grades to Rockford and on to Galena.  His surveyors found that, beyond Elgin, a fairly easy grade could be found at a small gap in the Marengo Ridge.  Ogden went out to the small community of Marengo located along the Chicago-Galena Road and asked well-to-do locals to help fund the Galena and Chicago Union Railroad construction through the area.  He had some success. With that, construction crews laid rails through Marengo on the way to Belvidere and Rockford by 1851.  This line would change the economic face of the area from that time until now.  That is the story that Craig Pfannkuche, Archivist for the Chicago and North Western Historical Society, will tell.

A Night at the Museum!

06/07/2024 05:00 PM - 08:00 PM CT
  • Free  -  Attendee - with no tasting tickets
  • $3.00  -  Attendee + Advance Purchase Single Craft Beer Tasting Ticket
  • $10.00  -  Attendee + Advance Purchase Craft Beer Tasting Tickets 4/$10
McHenry County Historical Society & Museum
6422 Main Street
Union, IL 60180