Bloomington in McLean County, Illinois — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
The Crothers and Chew Building
Site of Speech by Abraham Lincoln
— Built 1856 —
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places 1983
Located on the third floor of the Crothers and Chew Building was a facility known as Center Hall, where on April 6, Lincoln gave his address "Inventions and Discoveries." Hoping to keep his name before the public, after losing a U.S. Senatorial race to Steven A. Douglas, Lincoln went on the lecture circuit. His Bloomington appearance was marred by a number of mishaps which resulted in a small audience. The Hall was hard to find, with its entrance on Washington Street the newspaper published the wrong location for the speech, and a zealous and officious door-keeper locked the doors at the start of the meeting. This barred a number of people who wanted to hear the speech.
Lincoln's presentation hailed the genius of American inventors. He believed that such creativity would promote the expansion of the United States through industrial growth. This speech also represented a theme of the old Whig Party of which Lincoln had been a member. The Crothers and Chew Building was restored by Wollrab Bros. Properties in 1996.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Notable Buildings. In addition, it is included in the Former U.S. Presidents: #16 Abraham Lincoln series list. A significant historical date for this entry is April 6, 1856.
Location. 40° 28.752′ N, 88° 59.668′ W. Marker is in Bloomington, Illinois, in McLean County. Marker is on North Center Street south of West Washington Street, on the left when traveling south. North Center Street is one-way, going south. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 115 N Center St, Bloomington IL 61701, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Dewenter's Building (within shouting distance of this marker); Phoenix Hall (within shouting distance of this marker); The Rounds Block (within shouting distance of this marker); The National Hotel (within shouting distance of this marker); Center Street Site (within shouting distance of this marker); Sigmund Livingston (within shouting distance of this marker); The Phoenix Block (within shouting distance of this marker); Miller-Davis Building (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Bloomington.
Credits. This page was last revised on December 18, 2020. It was originally submitted on December 18, 2020, by Jason Voigt of Glen Carbon, Illinois. This page has been viewed 37 times since then and 3 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on December 18, 2020, by Jason Voigt of Glen Carbon, Illinois.