Thomasboro, Illinois is a small village located in the northeastern part of Champaign County, Illinois. While it is not widely recognized for its historical significance, the village has witnessed a number of historical events throughout the years. Here are the seven historical events that have taken place near Thomasboro, IL.
1. The Lincoln-Douglas Debates
The Lincoln-Douglas Debates were a series of seven debates between Senate candidates Abraham Lincoln and Stephen A. Douglas held in seven towns in central Illinois, including Champaign. The Champaign Debate took place on September 19, 1858, just a few miles from Thomasboro. This debate was attended by thousands of people and is considered a landmark in American political discourse.
2. The Great Chicago Fire
The Great Chicago Fire occurred on October 8, 1871, and is one of the most widely recognized disasters in American history. While the fire took place in the city of Chicago, it was visible from Thomasboro, and many residents of the village would have been able to see the destruction caused by the flames.
3. The Murder of Vermilion Grove Postmaster
The murder of Vermilion Grove postmaster, Harvey A. Prince, in 1895 shocked the small communities in the surrounding areas of Vermilion Grove and Thomasboro. Prince was killed by robbers who were attempting to steal the contents of the post office safe. The murder was a highly publicized event and ended up leading to the apprehension and conviction of the robbers.
4. The Creation of Route 45
In the early 20th century, the Illinois Highway Commission began the creation of Route 45, a major highway that runs from the Wisconsin border south to the Ohio River. The construction of Route 45 brought increased traffic and commerce to the region, including the village of Thomasboro.
5. The Formation of Chanute Air Force Base
Chanute Air Force Base was established in nearby Rantoul, Illinois in 1917. The base served as a training center for military personnel during both World Wars and the Korean War. Chanute Air Force Base played a significant role in the local economy and brought military families to the surrounding areas, including Thomasboro.
6. The Tornado Outbreak of 1974
On April 3, 1974, the village of Thomasboro was hit by a massive tornado during a tornado outbreak that devastated much of the Midwest. The tornado caused extensive damage to Thomasboro, including destroying or damaging multiple homes, businesses, and the local elementary school. Despite the destruction, no one was killed in Thomasboro during the tornado outbreak.
7. The Formation of the Thomasboro Grade School District
The Thomasboro Grade School District was formed in 1949 and has been a significant part of the community ever since. The district serves the students of Thomasboro and the surrounding areas and has played a role in the education and development of generations of local children.
In conclusion, while Thomasboro may be a small village, it has witnessed a number of historical events throughout the years. From political debates to natural disasters to the formation of vital institutions, Thomasboro has played a role in shaping the history of the region and the country as a whole.
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