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Local History Archives

Artifacts at the Peru Library

Over the years, individuals have donated items of personal and local interest to the library, creating a small archive. These items include photographs, Autograph books (Blanche N. Stevens), Louis Shadensack’s Journals, graduation spoons, shoes, hats, and the Royal Neighbors of America minute books. An index of the Book and Picture collection is available.  A short version of the index to the Artifact collection is also available. These items can be viewed by appointment, email [email protected] to arrange a viewing.

Sharp Collection of Letters

In 2013, Norada Wilkey contacted the library as a possible recipient of a small collection of letters that her family had kept since the 1860s. The letters include correspondence from E.L. Mauro (Burlington, Iowa) to Mary A. Sharp (Peru, Illinois) circa 1840. Based on this first, and oldest letter, the collection is called the Sharp Collection.

  • Other letters are from Sarah Anne Blakely in Bloomington, Iowa to M. A. Mansley in Burlington, Iowa dated March 21, 1847;
  • Sarah Anne Blakely in Bloomington, Iowa to Mary A. Mansley in Peru, Illinois dated March 26, 1848
  • Sarah Anne Blakely in Pittsburgh, PA to Mary Anne Sharp in Peru, Illinois dated September 28, 1848
  • Mary Strandt(?) in Burlington, Iowa to Mary Anne Mansley in Peru, Illinois dated October 11, 1848
  • Emma Gleason in Kanawhack, VA to Mary Anne Sharp in Peru, Illinois dated April 1851
  • Mary A. Sharp in Peru, Illinois to Mom and Dad dated June 9, 1852
  • John Kellogg in Peru, Illinois to R. Mansley dated August 1851
  • Also in the collection are several letters from Joseph Lloyd to family members during his service in the Union Army.

The library also has a collection of photographs, donations from area residents. Broadly grouped, the photographs cover the 1916 flood, bands, buildings, bridges among other topics. The photographs may be viewed by appointment. Contact Emily Schaub, [email protected] to arrange an appointment. Arrangements can be made to scan or photograph selected photographs in the collection.

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