Famous, But Forgotten

This issue of the MCHS News explores three extraordinary lives that all had roots in Madison County. Emma Kubicek, was a blind-deaf girl from Glen Carbon who became known as the Helen Keller of Illinois and was written about in newspapers across the country because of her extraordinary accomplishments. Remember “Say it with flowers?” Florist Jacob Ammann was one of the men responsible for the campaign. He also brought Florist Mutual Insurance, now Hortica, to Madison County. The third profile is of Walter Benjamin, best known as the inventor of the Benjamin Air Rifle. But the air rifle (BB gun) was only one of thousands of toys invented by Benjamin. One local newspaper reporter said it was “very much like visiting Santa’s workshop. “