200 North Main Street | Bloomington, Illinois | 309-827-0428

Archive of: Historic Photos

Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Santa in Action, 1953

Action shot of Santa, 1953.

"Action shot” of Santa was taken in Bloomington, demonstrating here how he comes down a chimney without leaving his clothes “all tarnished with ashes and soot.”

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Santa on Parade December 1948

Christmas parade, ft. Santa, 1938.

On December 5, 1948, Santa arrived in Bloomington. Today, the one-story building right behind Santa is J' soul BBQ.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Mississippi Orphans Go Sledding Highland Park, Bloomington, 1963

Group of orphans going sledding, 1963

Pastor J.H. Yohe of First Pentecostal Church of Bloomington gives a sled a push. The boys were part of a 40-orphan contingent from Tupelo, Mississippi.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Christmas 1953

Two toddler on Christmas, 1953.

The Pantagraph ran a series of Christmas Day photographs such as this one, yet these two toddlers were not identified.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Toy, toys, and more toys Christmastime 1953

Christmas shoppers, 1953

Downtown Bloomington holiday shoppers in mid-December 1953.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Holiday Shopping Downtown Bloomington, December 1953

Christmas shoppers, 1953

Shoppers out and about downtown Bloomington in mid-December 1953

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

December Sleigh Ride, 1963

Unknown women enjoying a sleigh ride, 1963

These young women appear to be having the time of their lives. Can anyone help us out?

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Santa No Replacement for Mama Downtown Bloomington, December 4, 1948

Crying child sits on Santa's lap, 1948

Santa arrived by train to Bloomington and spent much of the day greeting children. This little girl became separated from her mother, and not even Santa could calm her down.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Beats shoveling … Normal, Dec. 22, 1953

Two men out plowing the drive, 1953.

Three inches of snow had Don Locke of Bryan’s Standard Service Station out plowing the drive. Today, this site is occupied by Illinois State University’s Professional Development Building.

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Written by Bill Kemp in Historic Photos

Livingston’s Christmas Rush 1953

Christmas shopping, 1953.

Livingston’s was one of several gone-but-not-forgotten department stores. We know this wonderful photo was taken in mid-December 1953.

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