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Tuesday, December 12, 2017

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Dedication and unveiling of the "Home for the Friendless" historical marker at t...

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Dedication and unveiling of the "Home for the Friendless" historical marker at the Family Service Center, April 30, 2015, in Springfield. The Home for the Friendless, founded in 1863, was a home for indigent women and children in Springfield at a time when the city offered no services to the poor and destitute. Established on land donated by city founder Elijah Iles, the home was operated by a board of directors including some of Springfield's most prominent citizens. In January 1865, Rev. Francis Springer, a citizen of Springfield and U.S. Army Chaplain at Fort Smith, Arkansas, arranged for passage of more than 40 refugees from warn-torn Arkansas and Missouri to come to Springfield and the shelter offered by the Home for the Friendless. Descendants of some of those original families are still in Springfield.
The Home for the Friendless continued to provide services to the needy in 1920 under the name of the Children's Service Bureau, and in the 1960s, the facility, still at its original location, became the Family Service Center, providing adoption services, educational programs, and services to families in need.
Attending the ceremony in Springfield were a dozen descendants of Rev. Francis Springer, as well as the great-great grandchildren of Mary Jane Tully, one of the original orphan children from Arkansas. The marker was sponsored by the Family Service Center, the Illinois State Historical Society, and descendants of Mary Jane "Jennie" Tully.


Coming to Springfield for the 150th commemoration of the Lincoln Funeral? You ca...

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Coming to Springfield for the 150th commemoration of the Lincoln Funeral? You can find all about the weekend activities at: www.Lincolnfuneralcoalition.org.


The 2015 Lincoln Funeral Coalition
lincolnfuneraltrain.org
The mission of the 2015 LIncoln Funeral Coalition is to educate, coordinate and promote the accurate and dignified reenactment of the historic anniversary of Abraham Lincoln's funeral procession in Springfield, Illinois.

Mark W. Sorensen, Macon County Historian and ISHS Life Member, receives the Illi...

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Mark W. Sorensen, Macon County Historian and ISHS Life Member, receives the Illinois State Historical Society's "Lifetime Achievement" award from ISHS immediate past president Russell Lewis at the 2015 Annual Awards Ceremony, held April 25 at the Old State Capitol in Springfield. Photo by William Furry. More than 40 awards were presented at this year's annual ceremony. For more information about the Awards Program, go to www.historyillinois.org


Thursday, April 30, 2015 Historical Marker Dedication Home for the Friendless/Fa...

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Thursday, April 30, 2015
Historical Marker Dedication
Home for the Friendless/Family Service
11:30 a.m., 7th and South Grand Ave.
Springfield, IL

This historical marker commemorates the Springfield orphanage and shelter known as the Home for the Friendless, which was established on Lincoln's Birthday, 1863. Originally intended for homeless and indigent women and children, it became a refuge for refugees from Union occupied states in the Civil War, specifically Arkansas and Missouri. The first refugees, under the care of Rev. Francis Springer, a friend and former neighbor of Lincoln, arrived in January 1865, and were "placed out" to families. Others became lifelong residents of the Home for the Friendless, which evolved into the Children's Service League and later to the Family Service Center, which still provides social services, counseling, and referrals to needy families. The marker will be dedicated on a site near the original Home for the Friendless. The public is invited to the ceremony and to a short reception afterwards in FSC Conference Room. For more information, call 217-525-2781 and ask for Bill.

Illustration: Springfield Home for the Friendless, pen and ink drawing by William Crook Jr. Used by permission.


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