Recognition for Illinois history as sites are added to the Natio - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Recognition for Illinois history as sites are added to the National Register of Historic Places

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House at 502 SE 4th St., Fairfield, Ill. House at 502 SE 4th St., Fairfield, Ill.

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- The efforts of Illinois historic preservation advocates to preserve and promote the state's heritage paid off in 2018 with 30 properties being added to the National Register of Historic Places, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) announced.

The places recognized are scattered across the state and include a nationally significant African American art center, a former village hall and fire station, and nine historic districts that combined include more than 2,800 significant properties.

Places are added to the register by the National Park Service based on recommendations from the State Historic Preservation Office, a division of the IDNR. The 30 places were added throughout 2018.

The National Register of Historic Places is the official list of properties that merit special attention and preservation. Every Illinois county has at least one property or historic district listed in the National Register. Together, they represent a cross section of the Prairie State's history from its early settlement to the mid-20th century.

In general, properties have to be more than 50 years old to be eligible for the National Register. A listing places no obligations on private property owners but does make properties eligible for some financial incentives.

The 2018 additions to the National Register in our area :

House at 502 S.E. 4th, Fairfield, Wayne County
Listed April 19, 2018
The house at 502 S.E. 4th in Fairfield, which was constructed in the mid-1870s, is a good example of an Italianate House with Folk Victorian details.   Italianate characteristics of the house include its pyramidal hip roof with moderate pitch and flat top, wide trim board, wide and boxed overhanging eaves, and wide band board at the eave-roof junction.  While its square footprint, hipped roof, and chamfered porch supports with brackets are features are found on both Italianate and Folk Victorian subtypes, the house's high-pitched gables with porthole windows would be more characteristic of the Folk Victorian style.  

Methodist Episcopal Church, Salem, Marion County
Listed August 28, 2018
The Methodist Episcopal Church in Salem, completed in 1907, is important for both architecture and art. Designed in the Richardsonian Romanesque style by the architectural firm of Charles Henry and Son from Akron, Ohio, the church was completed in 1907.  A sensitive addition mimicking the historic architectural style was built in 1960.   The interior remodeling of the sanctuary in 1968 was completed under the direction of church member Vi Mueller. Mueller, an interior decorator for Stix, Baer & Fuller, transformed the church's interior reusing materials to create architectural features including ceilings of paper-pulp egg cartons; colonnettes of cardboard carpet tubes topped with finials of croquet balls painted to resemble old, gold colored distressed marble; and decorative sconces of downspouts and sheet metal. Linoleum tiles that lined the staircase and the risers were also used for the horizontal bands of ellipses representing the Christian fish symbol. The colorful alcove was created using 15,000 pieces of wood dipped in 89 different hues. The cross in the alcove, an impressive 18 feet high and 12 feet wide, was constructed of gold colored wires stretched vertically and horizontally between lighted plastic blocks. Mueller's ingenuity made it possible to create an extraordinary artistic display at little expense and has gained significance in its own right.

Old Fire Station, Chester, Randolph County
Listed June 15, 2018
The Old Fire Station, built in 1935, represents efforts by the City of Chester to provide modern and efficient fire protection services to their community. Designed by Theo F. Lacey, the city engineer, it was built with assistance from one of the new federal work relief programs under the New Deal established in the 1930s by the administration of President Franklin D. Roosevelt to combat the immense unemployment during the Great Depression. For 26 years, it served as the fire station to the community until 1961, when a new fire station was constructed as part of the city hall building.

Christian F. Weinrich House, Chester, Randolph County
Listed June 15, 2018
The Christian F. Weinrich House is important as an example of a Folk Victorian dwelling with Gothic Revival influences.  Built ca. 1873, its Folk Victorian and Gothic Revival influences are illustrated through its materials, massing, form and decorative details. Folk Victorian dwellings were constructed with a simple form that allowed for homeowners and builders to copy elements from different architectural styles. The Gothic Revival influence in the Weinrich house is represented by the steeply pitched roof with cross gables and the centered gable, cross brackets, vertical clapboard and stickwork detailing.

Frederick Weistar House, Chester, Randolph County
Listed June 15, 2018
The Frederick Weistar House, locally known as the Stone Cottage, is an architecturally significant example of a mid-19th century two-door facade building type, constructed ca. 1859 for Frederick Weistar.   The house is a well-preserved example of vernacular domestic architecture of the 1850s era, illustrated through both original exterior and interior details found throughout this dwelling. The two-door facade is believed to have been the influence of German building traditions adapted to a regional area in Illinois.

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