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Grand Army of the Republic- Oak Park Public Library

Identifier: 2017-003

Scope and Contents

The GAR records are comprised of two bound volumes containing biographical information and photographs of local veterans who fought in the Civil War.

Volume I: War Sketches contains the names of nearly 200 veterans and basic vital information and military background, possibly including birth and death dates, where served, and battles fought. The information was collected over time and some contain personal remembrances. Veterans would have received their own copy.

Volume II: Photographs contains over 100 photographs. These formal photographs were taken after their service, and some are in uniform.


  • 1860s

Language of Materials


Biographical / Historical

The Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) was established as a fraternal organization for Union Civil War veterans in 1866. Hundreds of posts were established across the United States.

Post #19, the Phil H. Sheridan Post, was named after the war hero and included veterans from Cook County, most notably early residents of Oak Park. The post was likely established in the 1880s. Although nationally the GAR reached its peak membership in the 1890s, the Phil H. Sheridan post had over 80 members in 1907, significantly more than most other Illinois chapters at that time.The Phil H. Sheridan post was active at least through the 1930s. The GAR officially disbanded in 1956, after the death of its last member.


2 Volumes

Materials Specific Details

Both GAR volumes underwent conservation treatment in 2016 from the Chicago Conservation Center. Tasks included paper conservation including deacidification and strengthening/repair, red rot treament, and cleaning. Volumes were also disbound given the tight binding.

Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Oak Park Public Library Special Collections Repository

834 Lake Street
Oak Park IL 60301 USA