125 Gems of the Genealogy & Local History Library: Gems 121 - 125

121. Alton ABC
This previous school year (2018-2019), a small group of Alton High School students and their teacher, Mrs. Lexa Browning-Needham, collaborated with our own Reneé B. Johnson of the Genealogy & Local History Library to publish Alton ABC. The rhyming alphabet picture book is designed to delight and inform, acknowledging the present and the history of our area. Two hundred copies were printed and bound (by the students themselves!) and donated to schools and daycares all over the area. More copies are being printed and will be available ($20) at the Genealogy & Local History Library in December 2019—make sure to check our website and Facebook page for more details. 121. Alton ABC


122. Picture book collection
Genealogy research is immigration research. Almost all of us in the United States are descended from relatively recent immigrants, with the notable exceptions of American Indians, whose ancestors had been here for thousands of years, and descendants of enslaved peoples, who were forcibly brought here rather than emigrated. In the quest to figure out who we are, and who our ancestors were, we search for their stories of coming to America. We are extremely excited to share with you a selection of picture books about immigration now available to read in the Genealogy & Local History Library. The books are currently displayed on the coffee table in front of the fireplace. The Genealogy & Local History Library is a place for all people, from all places, and of all ages, and we hope you will enjoy these beautiful new books and that you’ll bring the children in your lives here to share the stories of our country.

122. Picture books Fall 2019 newsletter

123. Elijah Lovejoy Printing Press Yoke
An original piece of the most significant event in Alton’s history has a permanent home at Hayner Library. The yoke, or main framework, of the printing press that was thrown into the Mississippi River the night that Elijah P. Lovejoy was murdered by an angry mob on Nov. 7, 1837, can be seen in the foyer of the Genealogy & Local History Library.

 123. Lovejoy Press at Hayner


124. Hayner Display
The first display case you see when you walk into the Genealogy & Local History Library is the case that focuses on the Hayner family and the early history of our library. There are photographs of Jennie, John, and Kate Hayner, as well as several of our librarians of years past. This case features books that belonged to the Hayners and an engraving of their estate on State Street. The case is a fitting tribute to the history of Hayner Library.

124. hayner display


125. Jennie D. Hayner Memorial Library building
Hayner Library's finest gem is the library building itself. The Jennie D. Hayner Memorial Library opened on May 21, 1891, with a collection of 9,000 volumes. This photograph, from 1894, is the earliest we have of the building (before the 1907 annex was added). Our two-story brick structure with its stately turret gilding on the southwest corner of the building is a magnificent downtown Alton landmark. Constructed by local laborers using only the finest materials from Alton sources, it is a handsome piece of Alton history that is celebrated its 125th birthday in 2016.

125. Hayner Memorial Library


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