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Thursday, January 20, 2022

Bryan Ogg

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Bryan Ogg is a local historian and curator of local legend, stories and lore.

The History Detective – New old books

As a History Detective, my research adventures take me through many old books. I visit libraries and archives, and on-line data bases looking for...

The History Detective – Rockin’ chair history

Recently, a local museum rejected a rocking chair that was used by Bishop Samuel P. Spreng, a Naperville leader in the Evangelical Church. I...

The History Detective – Building History

I recently interviewed Steve, Nancy and Eric Shiffler about their century-old construction business located in Naperville. Shiffler Builders, Inc., formerly (1907-1963) Charles Shiffler Sons,...

The History Detective – Fishing for history

More than 100 years ago, Naperville businessmen formed a committee to improve the DuPage River as it flowed through Naperville. In 1907, the DuPage...

The History Detective – Their House, Our History

The large blue and white house on the southeast corner of Aurora Avenue and Main Street is history. It was torn down (along with...

The History Detective – The Underground Press

Does anyone have copies of pamphlets printed by Napervillian James Givler? James Hamilton Givler was the grandson of David Givler, the owner/editor of The...

The History Detective – Green Book Naperville

Dear Mike Pooky Brown, I am not on Facebook, but your question regarding the Green Book era of Naperville was brought to my attention. The...

The History Detective – March Madness

Many of the first Irish immigrants to Naperville were farmers and laborers. A quick review of the 1860 census reveals that there were 23...

The History Detective – Looking for love in Naperville

In my research, I often find unique family names and places. With St. Valentine’s Day approaching, I wondered if there were any communities in...

Blast off into history – Blast off into history

One of the most elaborate advertising gimmicks a real estate developer could have ever imaged took place five stories above Naperville in the fall...

The History Detective – Blueprint for prosperity

Does anyone remember the small bronze plaque formerly on the east side of the 1962 addition to Nichols Library? The plaque read, “Tulip trees...

The History Detective – Columnist prepares to launch his new book

In 1996, after curating an exhibit for the Peoria Historical Society about its distilling and brewing history, I wrote my first book Peoria Spirits. A year...

The History Detective – Ghosts at the end of the rainbow

In 2012, an abandoned tombstone was found under a cooler in the basement of The Lantern restaurant, formerly the Rainbow Café. The stone is...

The History Detective – Knock on wood, Naperville

When we avoid an unfortunate incident or we need a little luck, some of us say, “Knock on wood,” and we tap a piece...

The History Detective – The Naperville melting pot

“Six Naperville Residents Made Naturalized Citizens” was the headline in the June 22, 1939, issue of the Naperville Clarion. Becoming a citizen of the...

The Curious Curator – A Century (plus) Business

While Illinois was celebrating its Centennial of Statehood in 1918, Charles William Friedrich was establishing himself in the Naperville furniture and funeral director business....

The Curious Curator – More stories on Old Nichols

Last month, in preparation for new construction, developer Dwight Avram removed the Mid-Century Modern addition to the old Nichols Library. According to the board...

The Curious Curator – A Little More and a Little Less

Have you ever read the poem, “What We Need” engraved on a grey, granite stone located on the Riverwalk? Did you know that the eight-line...

The Curious Curator – A little Naperville ‘Herstory’

Do you know these women? Hadassah Trask, Caroline Hawley, Clarissa Stewart, Almeda Langdon, Betsy Goff, Amy Naper, Sarah Hawley, Polly Taylor, Sibelia Riddler, or Elizabeth...

The Curious Curator – DuSable and DuPage

Jean Baptiste Point du Sable has been recognized as the first permanent settler (1790) and “Founder” of Chicago. Little is known of his birth...

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