‘History of DeKalb County in 100 Objects’ opens Oct. 2

The DeKalb County History Center will host the grand opening of its long-anticipated exhibit, “The History of DeKalb County in 100 Objects,” from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 2.

With more than 4,500 objects (not including photos, books, or archival materials) in the History Center’s collection, selecting 100 objects was a challenge. A museum committee decided the criteria for choosing an “object” for this exhibit was closely connected to each object’s story.

“We believe the best stories are those that help us understand ourselves, our community and others,” Michelle Donahoe, executive director of the history center, said in news release. “Thus, the featured objects reflect a wide variety of perspectives associated with DeKalb County history.”

There are 50 objects on display at the center and another 50 that are located around the county.

Two of the objects in the exhibit are connected to Wurlitzer – a box created from one of the thousands of pianos they manufactured and the canopy from a World War II drone that was also produced at this factory. To further expand upon the Wurlitzer story, during the grand opening, DeKalb High School students will perform on harps that were made by Wurlitzer. Specific times will be announced on the History Center’s website.

A new family program, Hands-on History, will kick off Oct. 9. This will be a monthly program where children partake in interactive activities connected to specific objects in the exhibit. In the first program, participants will learn fun stories connected to the DeKalb Ag logo. There will be activities between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. Registration is encouraged for this program. This inaugural program is free, but there will be a $5 charge per child starting in November.

To discover more about the 50 off-site objects, people are encouraged to check out the History Center’s exhibit page online. With the help of Google Earth, users can map out the location of the off-site objects, see related images, and discover interesting stories.

The DeKalb County History Center is located at 1730 N. Main St. in Sycamore. Hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday or by appointment. Admission is $5 for adults and free for members and children younger than 14.

For more information, visit dekalbcountyhistory.org or call 815-895-5762.

Photo: The story of World War I veteran Samuel Crosswell is featured in the DeKalb County History Center’snew exhibit “History of DeKalb County in 100 objects” opening on Saturday,October 2 between 10:00 – 4:00.