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Friday, October 25, 2013

N&W Explosion 1974

On July 19, 1974, a massive explosion leveled the N&W (Norfolk & Western) railyard in the heart of Decatur.  Neighborhoods around the explosion site were heavily damaged, including Lakeview High School. The blast was reportedly heard as far away as 30 miles.

(photos from Herald and Review archives)

Lakeview High School

To read more about the explosion:
"Death Before Dawn", a research project by Millikin student Laura Voyles
Text of Associated Press article detailing the incident
National Transportation Safety Board's "Railroad Accident Report" for the event

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Monument to African American Soldiers

African American Civil War Soldiers Monument
300 block of North Water Street - Decatur Illinois

Sculptor:  Preston Jackson
Unveiled August 1, 2009

Monday, October 14, 2013

Lakeview High

In 1950, Lakeview High School was opened at 1001 North Brush College Road.

damage to Lakeview High School from the Norfolk & Western explosion;  July 19, 1974

Lakeview High was closed in 1982.

Lakeview today;  now a research facility for Archer Daniels Midland Company, who moved into the building in 1986:

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Old Photos #6

Another collection of Decatur photos from times gone by.....


2012:  status update on the dolphins that were formerly located downtown


trestle at Fairview


c. 1925

Decatur Link of the Week

This week's featured Decatur link is THE SALVATION ARMY OF MACON COUNTY.

The Salvation Army..... "provides opportunities for worship, Bible study, and Christian fellowship as part of our Spiritual Ministry. Through our Youth Activities, we offer many youth who might literally be left “out on the street” a variety of recreational, educational and character-building choices. We are well-known for the Social Services we provide our hungry and homeless neighbors by offering them care, support, and the hope for a better future. We also assure many county residents a brighter holiday by coordinating the community Christmas giving."

Decatur's Salvation Army is currently looking to fill over 3,200 two-hour shifts for bell-ringers at the Red Kettles during the 2013 holiday season.  Please consider investing this small amount of time, which will make such a big difference.  To register, head to: