Memorial Building refresh fund drive continues


Last updated 1/31/2024 at 4:38pm | View PDF

The Village of Hinsdale has received more than $70,000 in donations from residents and businesses toward Memorial Building restoration and improvement work.

Assistant village manager Andrianna Peterson this week reported the total contributions to date for the Memorial Building Historic Plaza and Roof Railing Campaign to restore the building’s original Chippendale roof railing, which was removed due to deterioration a number of years ago, and renew the patio area on the south side of the building as a venue for events and community gatherings.

“The village appreciates the generosity of residents and businesses in support of the campaign,” Peterson said.

The campaign was launched last year in conjunction with the village’s 150th anniversary celebration with a vision of raising $350,000 to $450,000 to cover the cost of undertaking both projects this spring. Officials have said value engineering was part of the process in order to keep costs down. Despite not yet meeting the fundraising target, Peterson said the schedule remain on track.

“We still plan on moving forward with this project during the upcoming construction season,” she said.

Village Trustee Michelle Fisher has helped lead the campaign and said last year that the projects were a fitting way to commemorate the sesquicentennial milestone.

“The village plaza and the roof railing was something that really resonated and hit home,” Fisher said. “(The Memorial Building) truly is the centerpiece of our village and a place we all want folks to gather and enjoy.”

The Memorial Building was built to honor Hinsdale residents who served in the wars, a tribute particularly to village residents who gave their lives in defense of freedom.

In April 1927, the plans of architect Edwin Clark for the new Hinsdale Memorial Building were accepted at a village meeting, and a drive began to raise the $150,000 needed to pay for the project. Ninety percent of the funds needed were raised by the end of the first week.

The current campaign draws on that legacy, offering five donation levels for those interested in participating. Village President Tom Cauley suggested it’s a special way to demonstrate civic pride.

“We are asking the community to come together to help renew the Memorial Building Plaza, which has served as Hinsdale’s natural front yard for nearly 100 years,” Cauley said in a statement. “This community-driven campaign will allow the village to renovate the building’s plaza to create a community gathering spot, as well as restore its historic roof railing. Additionally, this endeavor will further the legacy of the Memorial Building, which was originally funded by Hinsdaleans seeking to honor those who made the greatest sacrifice for our nation.”

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Author Bio

Ken Knutson is associate editor of The Hinsdalean


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