Hiram E. Leonard Diary, Introduction

Hiram E. Leonard

As part of the 150th Anniversary of the Civil War, the Warrenville Historical Society is kicking off a new program “Warrenville and the American Civil War.”  Those wishing to relive the day-to-day life of Warrenville resident Hiram Leonard during the Civil War years can follow his diary entries here.


Diary of Hiram E. Leonard 1810-1878

Introduction, written by City Historian Leone Schmidt:

Hiram Leonard, from the Berkshire Hills of western Massachusetts, arrived in Warrenville in the fall of 1835.  His diaries are an almost continuous record of his Warrenville residency.  [Entries from May 12 through December 8 in 1848 do not appear.]  More than likely, he kept diaries prior to the March 1843 entry, but it is doubtful that they presently exist.

Leonard was a farmer, druggist, broom manufacturer, merchant, a justice of the peace, and Warrenville’s Postmaster from July 1, 1861 until his death November 6, 1878—a man of importance in the village.  His home at 3 S 381 Winfield Road still stands, as does the Leonard Store at 28 W 180 Warrenville Road.

Considering the absence of published periodicals from this era, the Leonard diaries are an invaluable source of local historical material.

Further reading about Leonard’s life, his home, and his store may be found in these works by Leone Schmidt, which are available at the Warrenville Historical Museum & Art Gallery:

The Life and Times of Warrenville, 1975

In and Around Historic Warrenville, 1982

When the Democrats Rules DuPage, 1989

Published in: on December 30, 2010 at 5:24 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Welcome to the Warrenville Historical Society’s blog.

Welcome to the Historical Society’s blog!  We hope that our supporters and history lovers alike will enjoying keeping up with all the exciting things going on with our organization.

Starting January 1, 2011, our blog will be updated with posts from the diary of Hiram E. Leonard, Warrenville’s Postmaster through much of the Civil War, who meticulously recorded his life in Warrenville.   As 2011 starts the four year long 150th Anniversary of the American Civil War, these entries will allow visitors to live the Civil War years through Leonard’s eyes.

On Wednesday, January 19 at 7:00pm, the Historical Society will also host “1861 in 48 minutes,” a program detailing the year month by month, at the Warrenville Public Library.  Aided by a series of images, presenters will detail life in Warrenville and events faced by the country as the Civil War loomed and then divided the nation and its people.  There is no fee and light refreshments will be served.

When the Warrenville Historical Museum & Art Gallery reopens on Sunday, January 9, the year 1861 will also be featured in a new exhibit that will run through the end of November 2011.  Please visit our website at http://www.warrenvillehistorical.org and follow us on Facebook and Twitter to learn more about these events and other Historical Society programs.  Contact us at info@warrenvillehistorical.org or (630)393-4215 with any questions.

Published in: on December 21, 2010 at 8:26 pm  Leave a Comment  
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