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Events Calendar


Jan 31

- Felix and Fingers Dueling Pianos
- Home Buyer Workshop
- IMEA All-State Concert and Honors Concert
- Scrapbook Crop
- Stokley Williams
- Is There Life After 50?
- Other Desert Cities
- The Erotic Hypnotic

Feb 1

- Other Desert Cities
- Pancake, Sausage & Scrambled Egg Breakfast
- Is There Life After 50?

Feb 2

- Ground Hog's Day at Wildlife Prairie Park

Feb 4

- 2015 State of the City Luncheon
- Bradley Braves Basketball
- Magician Mitch Williams at Tyroni's

Feb 5

- Central Illinois Herpetological Society Meeting
- Is There Life After 50?
- Whisper & Shout

Feb 6

- Cabaret
- CIAO First Fridays Artists' Tour
- Is There Life After 50?
- Live at the Five Spot
- Peoria Rivermen

Feb 7

- Chippendales
- Cabaret
- Is There Life After 50?
- Peoria Rivermen

Feb 8

- Peoria Riverme
- Cabaret
- Is There Life After 50?

Feb 9

- 2nd Friday Musical Film Club
- Anything Goes

Feb 10

- Anything Goes

Feb 12

- Alton Brown Live! The Edible Inevitable Tour
- Cabaret
- Is There Life After 50?

Feb 13

- Bloomington Thunder Hockey Game
- Cabaret
- Is There Life After 50?
- Live at the Five Spot

Feb 14

- Cabaret
- Is There Life After 50?

Feb 15

- Bradley Braves Basketball
- Cabaret
- Is There Life After 50?

Feb 17

- Elvis Lives
- Rodney Carrington

Feb 18

- Bradley Braves Basketball
- Newcomers' Club of Greater Peoria Monthly Luncheon

Feb 19

- Peoria Rivermen
- Is There Life After 50?

Feb 20

- Peoria Rivermen
- Is There Life After 50?
- Live at the Five Spot
- Salsa at the Contemporary Art Center

Feb 21

- Miranda Lambert
- Is There Life After 50?
- The Great Burr Oak Science Club

Feb 22

- Is There Life After 50?

Feb 26

- Is There Life After 50?

Feb 27

- Beauty & the Beast
- Peoria Rivermen
- Is There Life After 50?
- Live at the Five Spot

Feb 28

- Bradley Braves Basketball
- Is There Life After 50?


 
Peoria History

Peoria History
 

Throughout the years, Peoria has lived through a rich and interesting history, full of culture and diversity. 
 

 

The Native Americans 

The inhabitance of Peoriacan be traced as far back as 10,000B.C. with Native American tribes.  Many artifacts have been found that suggest these tribes were very organized and ritualistic, with a great respect and reverence for nature.  By the middle of the 17th century, the area was occupied by the Illini Indians, whose major tribes were the  Peoria , the Kaskaskia, the Michigamea, the  Cahokia , and the Tamaroa. 
 

Over time the populations of the Peoria tribe decreased as a result of warfare with neighboring Indian nations.  As a result of the Indian Removal Acts of the 1830’s, the small number of Peorians that remained in the area was forced to move to Oklahoma .  Above is a picture of a Peorian chief and to the left, the Peorian tribal flag.


 

The French

 

The French first came into Peoria's history in 1673, when Father Jaques Marquette and Louis Joliette explored Peoria's shores.  Seven years later, Robert Cavalier de LaSalle and Henri de Tonti arrived on the eastern bank of the Illinois River and made Fort Crevecouer, a drawing of which can be seen to the right. 

Peoria's first village grew around Fort St. Louis II, also known as Fort Piimiteoui, which is thought to have been located near the foot of Mary and Adams streets.  This
fort was built by Tonti and Francois Daupin de LaForest.  It became the first Europen settlement in Illinois, complete with trading posts, a blacksmith shop, a chapel, a winepress, and a windmill.

During the War of 1812, American forces believed that the French villagers were supporting the Native Americans.  In their war efforts, the Americans burned and razed the French village to the ground while any living inhabitants were captured and sent down the river to Alton.  After that, the Americans had gained control of Peoria.

 

 The Americans  
 

In 1813, American soldiers built Fort Clark on the land that was once occupied by the French village.  Six years later Josiah Fulton and six other men came to the area and became the first American pioneers to settle here.  Beginning with those settlers, Peoria flourished, and finally in 1845, Peoria was able to be considered a city.  To the left is a piece of a map of Adams and Edmund streets in Peoria from 1867.   

 

 

 Culture and Industry
 

Peoria's cultural history is infamous for it's role in entertainment in the late 1800's and early 1900's. Peoria had a diverse variety of people due to the different immigrants who had settled here.  Because of the eclectic tastes from different cultures, new shows would play in Peoria before they tried to make it big on Broadway.  If the people of Peoria liked the show, it was considered to have a good chance at success; however, if it flopped, it was back to the drawing board.  Thus came the phrase: "If it plays in Peoria, it'll play anywhere." 
Peoria also has some historical roots in the business of breweries and distilleries.  Andrew Eitle began Peoria's first brewery in 1837 and Almiron S. Cole the first distillery in 1843.  From those beginnings until prohibition, Peoria led the world in the distiling industry.  To the left is a 1937 drawing of Peoria's old distillery, Hiram Walker and Sons, Inc.  In it's heyday, the distillery was the largest in the world and was able to grind 20,000 bushels of grain each day.  Many of Peoria's historically wealthy became so as a result of the distiling industry.

For more information on Peoria's history or for information about historical tours of Peoria, please visit the The Peoria Historical Society's website.

 
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