The Sheffield Village Hall has been added to the National Register of Historic Places.
On Friday, the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency announced four buildings had been added to the national list: the Classic Revival-styled village hall at 239 S. Main St., Sheffield, and three Chicago structures.
The two-story village hall was designed in 1910 by George F. Barber, a DeKalb architect who moved his base to Knoxville, Tenn., in 1888. He used mail-order catalogs to market his residential designs worldwide, with his plans used for houses in every state and as far away as Japan and the Philippines. Approximately 50 of his houses are on the National Register of Historic Places.
The Sheffield Village Hall, however, is the only documented municipal building designed by Mr. Barber.
"We've worked on it (the designation) for four to five years," said Mary Ann Cernovich, who spearheaded efforts to have the hall listed in the register. "We were really excited, and affirmed, that others thought it was important, too."
In 1909, Sheffield officials decided the western Bureau County village had outgrown its original hall built in 1887 and appropriated $8,000 for a new one.
The Barber-designed building -- which included a jail and a fire department -- was completed in December 1910 for $10,154 using red bricks made at the Sheffield Shale and Product Co. Two years later, Sheffield's telephone exchange was added to the hall's occupants.
"Despite minor changes, the village hall retains nearly all character-defining elements including spatial configuration, materials and finishes," according to its register application. "The original conditions are verified by surviving blueprints and specifications."
The village hall is the second structure on the register from Sheffield, a town of about 900 people 40 miles east of the Quad-Cities. The 1880 St. Peter's Danish Evangelical Lutheran Church -- the first Danish Lutheran Church built in the U.S. -- was listed in 1973.
Illinois' other register additions announced Friday were the 1920 Neuville apartment building in Chicago's Streeterville neighborhood, thePolish Roman Catholic Union of America Building and the Vesta Accumulator Co. Building.
Today is Saturday, April 19, the 109th day of 2014. There are 256 days left in the year.
1864 -- 150 years ago: Miss McCorkindale has opened millinery rooms over Gimbel's dry goods store, where she offers a choice lot of millinery goods, which she will manufacture to order. 1889 -- 125 years ago: The little South Park Presbyterian chapel celebrated it first Easter decorated with flowers for an afternoon worship service attended by a large congregation. 1914 -- 100 years ago: The Wennerberg Chorus of Augustana College has returned from a 2,000-mile tour in the Eastern states and Illinois. 1939 -- 75 years ago: Col. Charles Lindbergh has stated that he is convinced that Germany's air force is equal to the combined sky fleets of her potential European foes. 1964 -- 50 years ago: Small gas motors may be permitted on boats in the lake to be built in Loud Thunder Forest Preserve. The prospect was discussed yesterday at a meeting of the Rock Island County Forest Preserve Commission. 1989 -- 25 years ago: The annual Dispatch/Rock Island Argus Spelling Bee continues to be a family tradition. Ed Lee, an eighth-grader at John Deere Junior High School, Moline, is the 1989 spelling bee champion from among 49 top spellers in Rock Island, Henry and Mercer counties. He advances to the competition in Washington, D.C. Runnerup was Ed's sister, Susan.