Group Begins Planning Bicentennial

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Montgomery County will celebrate it’s bicentennial next year, 2021. At a meeting held in early March, to discuss the upcoming 200th birthday of the county, several ideas for recognizing and celebrating the historic event emerged.

A special county-wide bicentennial celebration will tentatively be held in July 2021, at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds in conjunction with the annual Old Tyme Tractor Show. The celebration will entail old fashioned games and refreshments that were likely part of the county’s centennial celebration 100 years ago, as well as historic photos and other historical displays. Information pertaining to the early settlement of the county and the role of agriculture and commerce over the past 100 years is welcomed.

Each municipality within the county is encouraged to host its own bicentennial event, possibly in conjunction with the town’s festival or homecoming, incorporating some of its own history. Although the planning group is still in the early stages, the hope is that each of the twenty cities and villages in the county will have a symbol of the bicentennial to display by their town hall throughout 2021.

One idea is to collect enough large wooden cable spools (as used by utility companies) for each town to decorate and display. 

Suggested decorating ideas include converting the spools into a birthday cake, a Lincoln hat or even a Lincoln hat with candles on top.

The committee is seeking input from all 20 communities and is looking for help to collect the spools. Historical societies, local museums, businesses, churches, school alumni and genealogy groups are encouraged to help brainstorm ways to make Montgomery County’s bicentennial a memorable celebration.

A meeting, in accordance with social distancing guidelines, is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, June 2, at the Bank of Hillsboro, in the first floor meeting room. All are welcome to be a part of the planning, with the hope that at least one person from each municipality will attend.

For more information contact Donna Yeske at 217-556-3284 or Patty Whitworth at 217-246-2806.

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