Free Readers Ensemble 

Sunday, October 21, 2007

A Beautiful Day for the DEAD and the Living.
© Suburban Journals of  Chicago Inc. photo

16th Annual
Tale of the Tombstones

report by Ed Vincent

It was a nice sunny day with no rain expected or delivered.
Each year the Oak Park & River Forest Historical Society does a wonderful job of recreating

Our Favorite Spokesperson for the Dead and Sometimes
forgotten is the talented Doug Deuchler.

© Suburban Journals of  Chicago Inc. photo

  Doug Deuchler as Mr. Frank June, Oak Park Realtor
  Doug Deuchler Portrays a Grave Digger in 2006

They're Not Waiting for Someone to Die, they're beginning the Adventure into Regional History.
© Suburban Journals of  Chicago Inc. photo

Haymarket Is Always a Featured Item, this Year no Actors--but we do have last years (below).
© Suburban Journals of  Chicago Inc. photo

Dr. Bernard Fantus, portrayed by Glenn Braun.
© Suburban Journals of  Chicago Inc. photo

Dr. Bernard Fantus in March 1937, is credited with starting the world's first blood bank.  It all started at Cook County Hospital, when Dr. Fantus began to deposit blood in storage
and make withdrawals when blood was needed for a patient
following a surgery.  In a few years the practice had spread
around the world at most of the hospitals.  It seems obvious to us now, but that one change in procedures has saved countless lives all over the world.

More Info on Dr. Fantus
Further Biographical Information on Dr. Fantus

Oak Park's Well informed Gary Schwab leads residents on
a tour filled with lots of local history.

© Suburban Journals of  Chicago Inc. photo

Grace Hall Hemingway is brought to life by
Sara Minton.

© Suburban Journals of  Chicago Inc. photo

When her husband was making $50.00 a month as a new doctor in Oak Park, Ms. Hemingway was making $1000.00 a month
as voice teacher (
a century ago).  Sara Minton did a nice job
of giving some of the family history. 

  Mrs. Grace Hall Hemingway Speaks Of Her Son Ernest and Her
       Family, by Sara Minton

The Father of Ernest Hemingway and his Wife are buried in front of Mr. Hemingways well worn headstone (not pictured).
© Suburban Journals of  Chicago Inc. photo

Doris Humphrey does some Choreography as her Grandfather the Rev. Simon Humphrey.
© Suburban Journals of  Chicago Inc. photo

The Reverend Simon James Humphrey came to Oak  Park in
1867; a little after the Civil War and must have been an influential; if not a popular man; since Humphrey Avenue is
named after him and Elizabeth Court is named after his second
wife Elizabeth Humphrey.  His grand daughter was the dancer and choreographer Doris Humphrey, better known now and more remembered for her work in dance.


The Drummonds speak their minds.
© Suburban Journals of  Chicago Inc. photo

Emma Goldman, played by Nancy Greco, spoke
on workers rights.

© Suburban Journals of  Chicago Inc. photo

Emma Goldman was more than an individual with socialist beliefs, those would come later in her career, first she was
a feminist, then an anarchist, (
one who apparently felt political assassinations were alright) and capitalism should be destroyed no matter how, and later years she appeared more as a libertarian socialist.  She was an interesting and complex
person who had seen and done much in her life.  She was
portrayed by
Maureen Stapleton (who won an Academy Award for the role) in the film "Reds".

More on Emma Goldmans Biography

Emma Goldman cast relief on her headstone.
© Suburban Journals of  Chicago Inc. photo

A wonderful event this year and now next year.  Congratulations to all who worked on this day.

16th Annual

Tale of the Tombstones

Sunday, October 21, 2007 - 1 P.M.

A two-hour walking tour of Forest Home Cemetery in Forest Park.

The Historical Society of Oak Park and River Forest will present its 16th Annual tour of Forest Home Cemetery.  Please join us on a beautiful fall day and take an historic stroll through this picturesque cemetery where you will meet actors portraying people whose stories and lives changed the course of local and regional history.  This year's tour will focus on "Genius and Diversity."  Come and meet the fascinating innovators in the areas of dance, literature, science, sports, and architecture.

Costumed interpreters will bring these stories "to life" in this Illinois State Historical Society award-winning program by recreating the poignant and inspiring stories of fascinating citizens who have made significant and/or colorful contributions to area history.


 A two-hour tour will highlight the history of the cemetery and some notables buried there.
  Children’s and group tours are available by pre-arrangement ONLY! 
Call 708-848-6755 for group rates and further details.
WHERE: Forest Home Cemetery
  863 DesPlaines Avenue
  Forest Park, IL 60130
WHEN: Sunday, October 21, 2007
  Beginning at 1 p.m.; guided tours leave at 10-minute intervals until 2 p.m.
Rain date: October 28, 2007
COST: $10 for Historical Society members; $15 non-members

The Historical Society of Oak Park and River Forest is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the collection, preservation, interpretation, study and exhibition of artifacts and other materials related to local history and to the publication and dissemination of related materials and information.  The Historical Society is located on the second floor of Pleasant Home, an 1897 National Historic Landmark in Oak Park.  Call 708-848-6755 with questions.  This year's walk is sponsored by Drechsler, Brown, and Williams Funeral Home of Oak Park.

For more information on the cemetery, you can purchase Nature's Choicest Spot, a book written by The Historical Society of Oak Park and River Forest.  Short biographies of many of the fascinating people you will meet on the walk are featured as well as historic information on the cemetery.  Only $11!  See our gift shop on our website home page for more information.



© Suburban Journals of  Chicago Inc.
published by Suburban Journals of  Chicago Inc.

STARSHIP SUBS, Soups, Catering, and more...