Colonel Palmer House

Colonel Palmer House Our mission is to preserve the home of Gustavus and Henrietta Palmer, provide a venue for local history interpretation and education, and serve as the home of the Crystal Lake Historical Society.

The Colonel Palmer House will closed on Thursday, July 4th due to the observation of Independence Day. The Colonel Palme...
07/03/2019

The Colonel Palmer House will closed on Thursday, July 4th due to the observation of Independence Day. The Colonel Palmer House will reopen for normal hours on Friday, July 5th. We at the Colonel Palmer House wish everyone a very Happy Independence Day!

Crystal Lake Park District
06/29/2019

Crystal Lake Park District

Unique and creative birthday party packages are available at the Colonel Palmer House. To reserve your party, please contact Ashley Palazzo, Colonel Palmer House Facility Manager at 815.477.5873 or [email protected].

BIRTHDAY PARTIES

For 1.5 hours, the historic Colonel Palmer House staff will host you and your guests as we celebrate your birthday Victorian-era style. Luncheon includes seasonal fruit, three finger sandwiches, and three delectable desserts (cake not provided) and of course, tea! Victorian dining etiquette will be presented and lively parlor games will be played. Party times available on Saturdays and Sundays. Maximum 25 guests.

FAIRY BIRTHDAY: Be swept away into a fantasy world of fairies with our short fairy presentation and fairy-themed crafts. Available for children 4 & older.

VICTORIAN BIRTHDAY: Victorian dining etiquette will be presented and parlor games from the 1800s-era will complete the party.

Fee: $25 per person (resident or non-resident)

The Colonel Palmer House will be closed Saturday, June 22nd for the Crystal Lake Park District's Beach Bash! Join us at ...
06/22/2019

The Colonel Palmer House will be closed Saturday, June 22nd for the Crystal Lake Park District's Beach Bash! Join us at Main Beach from 11am-3pm for a day of fun! There will be lots of activities and entertainment for all ages!

The Colonel Palmer House will be at this event with the The Crystal Lake Park District Nature Center to join in on the summer fun! We hope to see you all there!

For more info check out the Crystal Lake Park District webpage at www.crystallakeparks.org

Did you know Crystal Lake has a rich Swedish culture and history? Explore our Swedish roots all summer long with engagin...
06/20/2019

Did you know Crystal Lake has a rich Swedish culture and history? Explore our Swedish roots all summer long with engaging and educational exhibits right here at the Colonel Palmer House!

Check out special displays on the citizens of Swedenberg of Crystal Lake, the immigration experience, the genealogy of the early Swedish immigrants, and many more. These very special exhibits are on display until the end of August and you can visit us during our open hours of every Thursday and Friday from 11am-5pm and Saturday from 10am-4pm.

A huge thank you to Kurt Pearson, the descendants of Swedenberg, and to the Crystal Lake Historical Society for making these exhibits possible. If you would like more information please feel free to contact us by email: [email protected]

Congratulations to Bjorn from Sweden who traveled the farthest distance to attend MidSommar Fest! Help is needed to cont...
06/20/2019

Congratulations to Bjorn from Sweden who traveled the farthest distance to attend MidSommar Fest! Help is needed to contact the other two winners – if you know Karen from Mesa or Margaret from Phoenix, please contact the Colonel Palmer House at [email protected] with their contact information. All three winners will receive a free one year membership to the Crystal Lake Historical Society.

06/08/2019

FREE EVENT TODAY! 11am-4pm Did you know Crystal Lake has a large Swedish population? Explore our Swedish roots at this fun and educational festival of folklore! Join us for activities that include maypole decorating and raising, crown crafts, Swedish traditions, Scandinavian dance group, Swedish treats, CL Brewing and more!

Check out a special presentation on the Swedenbergers of Crystal Lake from Kurt Pearson, member of the Crystal Lake Historical Society. This is a free, family friendly event that is Saturday, June 8th right here at the Colonel Palmer House!

06/07/2019

The Colonel Palmer House will be closed today, June 7th in preparation for our MidSommar Festival on Saturday, June 8th from 11am-4pm. We hope to see you all here tomorrow to celebrate our local Swedish culture!

GARDEN PLANT SALE TODAY ONLY! 9AM to until they sell out at the Colonel Palmer House at 660 E Terra Cotta Ave, Crystal L...
05/25/2019

GARDEN PLANT SALE TODAY ONLY! 9AM to until they sell out at the Colonel Palmer House at 660 E Terra Cotta Ave, Crystal Lake. Here's an unique opportunity to purchase pre-loved cultivated by friends of the Colonel Palmer House.

Gardeners are selling their prized plants dug from their own garden beds. As dedicated partners of the Colonel Palmer House, they have donated and tended to numerous plants on our property. Stop by today and check us out! Prices will vary.

Colonel Palmer House's cover photo
05/18/2019

Colonel Palmer House's cover photo

Do you like history? Do you like to have fun while learning about the rich history of Crystal Lake? Want to know how you...
04/01/2019

Do you like history? Do you like to have fun while learning about the rich history of Crystal Lake? Want to know how you can make an impact on our community? If these statements sound like you, then you can get involved with volunteering at the Colonel Palmer House!

We are always looking for folks to help us bring history to life. If you know of others who may be interested or high school students in need of volunteer hours, feel free to contact the facility manager at the Colonel Palmer House.

There are also opportunities to volunteer with The Crystal Lake Historical Society! Check out the link below to find out how you can get involved and bring our history to life!

https://cl-hs.org/about-us/volunteer/

03/14/2019

The Colonel Palmer House will be open today, Thursday, March 14th from 2:00-5:00pm due to staff training.

The Colonel Palmer House is full of fascinating local family history. Here is a look at Colonel Gustavus and Henrietta P...
03/11/2019

The Colonel Palmer House is full of fascinating local family history. Here is a look at Colonel Gustavus and Henrietta Palmer's own genealogy!

Curious about how to find out your own family history? Then make sure to sign up for our next Lunch and Learn program: Tracing Your Genealogy!

Join us on Friday, April 5th from 12:00-1:30 PM with Genealogy presenter, Debbie McArdle. She has 45 years of research experience that includes; old fashioned sleuthing of courthouses, churches, cemeteries, and communities. Debbie will guide the way to using proper internet genealogical libraries, that will use DNA to find family connections. *Ages 15 and up

Register now at crystallakeparks.org Activity code: 241901-03 ($15 per participant)

Colonel Palmer House's cover photo
03/09/2019

Colonel Palmer House's cover photo

03/08/2019

The Colonel Palmer House will be closing early today, March 8th at 3pm

Happy Valentine's Day from the Colonel Palmer House! In spirit of this holiday, here is a little tidbit of history about...
02/14/2019

Happy Valentine's Day from the Colonel Palmer House! In spirit of this holiday, here is a little tidbit of history about this sweet day.

According to the Wisconsin Historical Society, St. Valentine’s Day may have been established as early as A.D. 500 in Rome. However it wasn’t until 1382 that it was associated with romantic love. A poem written by Geoffrey Chaucer that honored the 1st anniversary of King Richard II of England to Anne of Bohemia is credited with that shift.

Valentine’s Day became popular in British society during the 17th century with the addition of small gifts being exchanged by the middle of the 18th century.

Similar trends occurred in America with handmade cards being exchanged in the early 1700’s. By the early 1830’s, pre-printed cards were the trend. A universal postal system and the easy availability of paper helped to increase the exchange of valentines.

Esther Howland, known as the “Mother of the American Valentine” began her business of making and selling valentine cards after receiving a valentine from England in 1847. The business quickly grew and with her partners it eventually became the Whitney Valentine Company. They produced valentines until 1942 when wartime paper shortages forced them to close.

Stop into the Colonel Palmer House today to learn more about vintage Victorian Valentines with a special Valentine's themed tour!

01/12/2019

The Colonel Palmer House will be closing early Saturday, January 12th, due to snowy weather conditions.

Just as a reminder the Home Wine Making Lunch and Learn has been moved to Friday, May 3rd, 2019! You can register now fo...
01/04/2019
www.crystallakeparks.org

Just as a reminder the Home Wine Making Lunch and Learn has been moved to Friday, May 3rd, 2019! You can register now for the event at crystallakeparks.org

Register now for all new Lunch and Learn programs at the Colonel Palmer House! Looking to pick up a new skill this seaso...
12/20/2018
www.crystallakeparks.org

Register now for all new Lunch and Learn programs at the Colonel Palmer House!

Looking to pick up a new skill this season? Lunch and Learns have returned to the Colonel Palmer House with programs that will enlighten you on various skills you can try out! Come join us and enjoy a delicious lunch while learning something new! Register online now at crystallakeparks.org

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Colonel Palmer House's cover photo
12/20/2018

Colonel Palmer House's cover photo

11/17/2018

Home for the Holidays! Drop by the Colonel Palmer House for a special Victorian Christmas tour!

11/15/2018

The Colonel Palmer House will be closed Thursday, November 22nd and Friday, November 23rd due to Thanksgiving. We will reopen for tours on Saturday!

10/27/2018

The Colonel Palmer House will re-open for tours November 1st! Be sure to come by check out this amazing piece of Crystal Lake history!

Colonel Palmer House's cover photo
10/26/2018

Colonel Palmer House's cover photo

09/04/2018

This Thursday, September 6th, 2018 the Colonel Palmer House will be closed from 10 AM to 1 PM due to staff training! The house will be open from 1 PM to 5 PM for tours.

08/31/2018

All aboard the Illinois Freedom Train! There will be a special exhibit on display at the Colonel Palmer House featured during the month of September. Make sure to stop by for a tour during our open house hours!

Give our page a like to stay up to date on all our events and exhibits on display!

Crystal Lake Historical Society
08/26/2018
Crystal Lake Historical Society

Crystal Lake Historical Society

Coinciding with the Illinois Bicentennial in 2018, Doors Open Illinois will see iconic historical sites and architectural treasures throughout the state open their doors to the public during four consecutive weekends in August. It's a chance for visitors like you to get a special glimpse of our history and heritage. The Colonel Palmer House will open their doors for free admission.

Hours: Saturday, August 25th, 9 a.m.–4 p.m. & Sunday, August 26th 11 a.m.–2 p.m.

https://www.enjoyillinois.com/illinois-bicentennial/doors-open-illinois/listing/doors-open-colonel-palmer-house

Dearly Departed: A Royal Affair. October 12th and 13th. Tickets are $10 and are on sale now! https://cl-hs.org/shop/ Cli...
08/17/2018

Dearly Departed: A Royal Affair. October 12th and 13th. Tickets are $10 and are on sale now! https://cl-hs.org/shop/ Click this link to buy tickets online! Stay up to date on all the details by giving our page a like or going to this webpage: www.CL-HS.org

All aboard the Illinois Freedom Train! There will be a special exhibit on display at the Colonel Palmer House featured d...
08/17/2018

All aboard the Illinois Freedom Train! There will be a special exhibit on display at the Colonel Palmer House featured during the Open Doors Illinois event on August 25th and 26th.

Coinciding with the Illinois Bicentennial in 2018, Doors Open Illinois will see iconic historical sites and architectural treasures throughout the state open their doors to the public. It's a chance for visitors like you to get a special glimpse of our history and heritage.

Check out our events page for more info on when you can check out this exclusive exhibit!

A huge thank you to everyone who came out to our Summer Sunday: 1818: A Frontier is Forged! Thank you to our volunteers ...
08/16/2018

A huge thank you to everyone who came out to our Summer Sunday: 1818: A Frontier is Forged! Thank you to our volunteers who made our Summer Sunday events amazing!

If you missed our event you can still come by and check out the American Freedom Train exhibit inside the Colonel Palmer House during our open hours until the end of September!

Join us at the Colonel Palmer House this afternoon from 1-4 pm for our FREE Summer Sunday event.It's been 200 years sinc...
08/12/2018

Join us at the Colonel Palmer House this afternoon from 1-4 pm for our FREE Summer Sunday event.

It's been 200 years since Illinois became a State. What was here and who was here in McHenry County in 1818? Meet trappers, traders, and Native Americans.

Follow the history train inside the house to learn all about Illinois.

This is our final Summer Sunday program for 2018. Join us for an afternoon of learning, music, and fun!

Join us at the Colonel Palmer House this afternoon from 1-4 pm for our FREE Summer Sunday event.

It's been 200 years since Illinois became a State. What was here and who was here in McHenry County in 1818? Meet trappers, traders, and Native Americans.

Follow the history train inside the house to learn all about Illinois.

This is our final Summer Sunday program for 2018. Join us for an afternoon of learning, music, and fun!

07/24/2018

The Colonel Palmer House will be closed this Saturday, July 28th, due to staff training. We will reopen for regular hours on Thursday, August 2nd!

Colonel Palmer House's cover photo
07/20/2018

Colonel Palmer House's cover photo

Some pictures from Summer Sunday! Thank you to everyone who came out to support this event!
07/17/2018

Some pictures from Summer Sunday! Thank you to everyone who came out to support this event!

07/15/2018

Today is the day! Drop by the Colonel Palmer House anytime from 1:00-4:00 PM for free, family-friendly fun! Learn all about the very first settlers of Crystal Lake and life on the covered wagon trail!

07/08/2018

Summer Sunday: 1838 A Family is Rooted, is one week away! Come on down to the Colonel Palmer House for free family-friendly fun! Make sure to drop by Sunday, July 15th from 1-4 PM for an interactive experience all about the first settlers of Crystal Lake!

Curious about the Colonel Palmer House? Stop by for a tour of the house and the grounds! We are open Thursdays and Frida...
07/05/2018

Curious about the Colonel Palmer House? Stop by for a tour of the house and the grounds! We are open Thursdays and Fridays from 11 AM to 5 PM and on Saturdays from 10 AM to 4 PM! Stop by and check us out!

Summer Sunday is just around the corner! We are busy in progress building our very own covered wagon! Make sure to mark ...
07/01/2018

Summer Sunday is just around the corner! We are busy in progress building our very own covered wagon! Make sure to mark July 15th on your calendar to learn all about the settlers of Crystal Lake and check out the finished covered wagon!

06/29/2018

The Colonel Palmer House will be closed tomorrow, Saturday June 30th. We will reopen for regular hours on Thursday, July 5th!

06/28/2018

We're proud to announce that the official page for the Colonel Palmer House is up and running! Like our Page for official updates and exclusive sneak peeks.

06/28/2018

Check out some of our upcoming events!

The Colonel Palmer House will be closed on Saturday, June 23. Please come see us at the Crystal Lake Park District Beach...
06/19/2018

The Colonel Palmer House will be closed on Saturday, June 23. Please come see us at the Crystal Lake Park District Beach Bash at Main Beach. Participate in some old fashioned games, have some photo fun with our scenes and props plus enter a drawing to win a local history themed gift basket. Hope to see you at the Beach Bash! Free admission, 9 am-9 pm

06/19/2018
Crystal Lake Park District

The blacksmith demo by Sam Johnson was a crowd favorite at Summer Sundays.

Summer Sunday blacksmith demo. Sunday, June 3 at Colonel Palmer House

Photo credit: Vicki Coleman
06/19/2018

Photo credit: Vicki Coleman

Colonel Palmer House's cover photo
06/19/2018

Colonel Palmer House's cover photo

Address

660 E. Terra Cotta Avenue
Crystal Lake, IL
60014

Opening Hours

Thursday 11:00 - 17:00
Friday 11:00 - 17:00
Saturday 10:00 - 16:00

Telephone

(815) 477-5873

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