- This event has passed.
Dairies to Prairies – The Land has A Story to Tell
October 13, 2019 @ 12:30 pm - 2:30 pmFree
Please RSVP below. Space is limited. Thank you!
The Dairies to Prairies project is a documentary (and traveling exhibit project which will not be available at Schweitzer) from the Elgin History Museum and Grindstone Productions. It premiered at the Gail Borden Library on Sunday, June 24, 2018. The Museum started this project to tell an environmental history of Elgin and northern Kane County through the change in land use.
At one time, the area had over 140 dairies, dairy farms, and creameries. Now there are only 3 dairies in Kane County and the land is a planned mix of preserved open space with restored prairies and homes. The project connects new homeowners living in far west Elgin to the history of the land, while remembering Elgin’s great dairy heritage.
The project should really be called Prairies to Dairies to Prairies, because before European settlement in the 1830s Illinois had millions of acres of undisturbed prairie. A large and varied diversity of plants, animals, and insects kept the environment in balance. When the dairy industry started in the 1850s, the land was still open space, but agricultural with the prairie plowed under for row crops and pasture. In 2018, there is less than 1% of prairie left in Illinois creating an environmental problem in terms of biodiversity and natural stability.