McLean County was, in one way, the center of the New York Juvenile Asylum’s operations in Illinois. Ebenezer Wright, the Western Agent for the Asylum lived in Normal for over 25 years, running the Western Agency out of his home on Willow Street. No photos of that home remain, but the Pantagraph contained a few stories of the children.
Adoption records for the years 1840 to 1900 are freely available in McLean County. A review of those records revealed that not a single child received through the New York Orphan trains was ever legally adopted during that period.
On March 18th at 7pm Rochelle Gridley will present stories of orphan riders who came to McLean County. This program is co-hosted by the Hudson History Club. Light refreshments will be provided.