Volume Ten

No. 1

February, 1969



Some people insist that only today and tomorrow matter. But how much poorer we would be if we really lived by that rule. So much of what we do today is frivolous and futile and soon forgotton. So much of what we hope to do tomorrow never happens. The past is the bank in which we store our most valuable possessions; the memories that give meaning and depth to our lives  


John H. Bradley, author-educator


SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 2, 1969 at 3 PM









Postmaster Phil Talbot will talk about the present Post Office and how it functions. John Gustafson will give a short biographical sketch of most, but not all, of the Postmasters  through the years, beginning with the first one, Judge Isaac Wilson.


This part of the program will be preceded by the election of officers. The following slate is proposed by the Nominating Committee:



Vice President



Trustee for Two Years

Trustee for Two Years

Trustee to Fill Out H. Patterson’s Term

Harold O. Patterson

Miss Ruth Northrup

Mrs. Walter H. Wood

Herbert R. Carlson

Raymond J. Patzer

Jeffery Schielke

William B. Benson


The Refreshment Committee will be the present Board members. Nine pictures of former postmasters will hang in our cases in the Bartholomew Memorial Room.


Harold Patterson will exhibit the Post Office box used at Hoddam in Will County until 1899 when it was discontinued. This Post Office was on Rt. 59 and the box is like many used in the stations in Kane County in the early days.


Our December program was a perfect curtain-raiser for the Christmas season. The Batavia High School Chorus, under the direction of Mr. Elwood J. Willey, sang both as a chorus and in solo parts. Then Miss Erma Jeffery gave three Christmas readings in her inimitable way.



Now that I have completed another two years as your President, I wish to express my appreciation of the fine response of the members whenever they were asked to assist in any project and of the excellent cooperation of the Board Members.

I am wondering how many realize the hours that John Gustafson spends in filing material, acknowledging gifts, replying to -requests for information, conferring with Junior history students and preparing our interesting newsletter, The Batavia Historian.

I have enjoyed serving as President for five of the nine years of our existence. My only regret is that we have not established a museum but I still hope that will be realized soon.

My Best Wishes to the incoming officers and to all the members.

Eunice Shumway

We are most grateful recipients of the following mementos. They have been acknowledged with thanks:

James Quinn for 1 book, 25 postcards, 1 booklet and 9 copies of old newspapers.

Frank F. Scobey for duplications of a list of Batavia Professions and Trades for 1855 and a Batavia Business Directory for 1868.

Misses Edith and Alice Bailey for a pamphlet showing early windmills of the U.S. W. E. & P. Co.

Frank Elwood for 1-5 x 7 photo of The Chas. Johnson house on N. Water Street, recently razed.

We are grateful to our officers and members for a multitude of services too numerous to mention.

We thank the Furnas Electric Company for printing, folding and addressing our Newsletters this past year.

We also thank the Aurora Beacon News and its reporter, Mrs. Marj Holbrook, for excellent coverage of our news.

We are saddened by the death of Mrs. Roy C. (Kathleen Gunnon) Andrews.  We extend our sympathy to her family.

Amos Hartman is progressing nicely since his operation. We understand that Miss Caroline Nelson fell the other day and broke her hip.  At this writing she is at Community Hospital.

We have copies of Eunice Shumway's "History of Batavia" and "Batavia: Past and Present" Fund Report as of December 24, 1968. Copies will be at our next meeting for examination.

When thinking about gifts, don’t forget our book Batavia: Past and Present now only $1.00, on sale at the Library.

Mrs. Leone Schmidt's book Come Fly to the Prairie is out.  It is a history of the Warren family, of Warrenville, from 1832 to 1844. Cloth bound, 90 pages, price $4.75.


The Society has received a copy of the Illinois Register, Springfield, for December 3, 1968 from Ed. Hampton.

This gives a history of the Old State Capital.



 - held 39 regular meetings,

 - issued 36 different newsletters,

 - placed bronze plaques on seven homes in Batavia,

 - sent information about Batavia and Batavia people to dozens of interested persons all over the United States,

 - through our newsletters, kept in touch with many former Batavians.  

 - Many of them have sent us mementos,

 - received nearly a thousand memorabilia, plus newspapers, now in temporary storage. These will be placed in  

   a museum or permanent storage eventually.

 - placed our books Historic Batavia and Batavia: Past and Present in the libraries of many universities, museums and

   State libraries throughout the United States, through our meetings and news items, Batavia is much more conscious

   of its historic past, interested our schools and its students in writing Batavia history for the magazine "Illinois   

   History” vigorously striven to preserve historic buildings in Batavia.

The present Kane County Courthouse was saved with our help because we had learned that at least five of the county offices could occupy it and still allow space for expansion. Now, after 76 years, it is said to be a fire hazard, particularly because of the dome.  


What about our State Capital, other State Capitals and the National Capital, they all have domes.  Talk to your supervisors about avoiding the expense of an entirely new building. 

The following are new members or have rejoined:

Mrs. Joseph S. McClurg

Misses Theresa and Mary Feldott

Hart Road

511 E. Wilson Street


Dues are due.


If you are in arrears, see Ralph Benson.