After several unsuccessful attempts, in 1887 a group was finally organized to preserve Madison County’s History. They were the Madison County Old Settlers Union, but many called them “snow birds.”
For three years, volunteers at the Madison County Archival Library worked to process over 44,000 probate files. Along the way, they found some interesting pieces of Madison County history.
In 1833 the Illinois State Penitentiary opened in Alton. It closed in 1860 when a new prison opened in Joliet but re-opened the following year to serve as a prison for Confederate soldiers.
Here are the stories of four Madison County Residents known nationally in their time, but forgotten today: Minna Inglis Clark Fletcher, Charles Helmuth Seybt, Vasil Stephanoff, and Charles Boeschenstein.
The most recent Madison County Courthouse celebrated its centennial anniversary in 2015. Court was initially held in designated homes, followed by four buildings constructed specifically as courthouses.
Troy was first settled in 1803 as Columbia. When the land was sold and platted in 1819, it was given the name of Troy. In its early years Troy was a stage coach stop along the National Road.
Five authors, all descendants of immigrant families from Granite City’s Lincoln Place neighborhood tell the stories of their Armenian, Macedonian, Bulgarian, Hungarian and Mexican ancestors.
Madison County has many museums and historic homes where area residents and visitors can learn about our history and heritage. These articles provide information on those places that are open to the public.
The influenza pandemic of 1918 killed millions world-wide, and Madison County was not out of reach. In the fall of 1918, nearly 500 Madison County residents died of the flu.
During WW II, area residents were hungry for news of local servicemen. One of the ways they stayed informed was through letters and news stories that dominated local newspapers.