The City of Macomb, the Macomb Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Macomb Public Library, and the Western Illinois Museum are planning a birthday party! Thursday, April 9th is the 233rd birthday of General Alexander Macomb, the city’s namesake. The party will be held at the Western Illinois Museum from 3:00 to 5:00 pm. The event is free and open to the public. Donations welcome.
This year’s celebration includes the opportunity for children to create a party hat for General Macomb. The Western Illinois Museum will display their creations from April 1st through the 10th. Mayor Mike Inman will award four $25 Macomb Chamber of Commerce Gift Certificate for the most creative design in four age groups, at the April 9th party. Entry sheets and contest guidelines are available at the museum or at the museum website: www.westernillinoismuseum.org.
This year’s party will provide a chance for families to learn about General Macomb, the War of 1812 and the events that launched the development of the region. The party begins at 3:00 with Dr. Eugene Watkins, site supervisor for Old Fort Madison, and other War of 1812 re-enactors who will demonstrate how a soldier in the region served his country.
At 3:45, a brief program will begin with Boy Scout Troop 315 presenting the colors. Comments by Macomb’s Mayor, Mike Inman, and Dr. Elizabeth Kaspar, regent of the General Macomb Chapter of the D.A.R. will follow. At 4:00 Illinois Humanities Council Road Scholar and musician, Lee Murdock, will present a unique program titled, “The Star-Spangled Banner and the Struggle that Forged Two Nations.” Lee’s program transports audiences back to the summer of 1812, when President James Madison declared war against Great Britain. The outcome of this conflict contributed significantly toward defining the identities of the United States and Canada, as well as the development of west central Illinois. This all-ages educational and entertaining program is a perfect opportunity to gain insight into the War of 1812 and celebrate General Alexander Macomb, one of the war’s heroes. The event will conclude with birthday cake and singing Happy Birthday at 4:45.
General Macomb (April 3, 1782–June 25, 1841) was a key figure in the war of 1812, contributing to a decisive victory at the Battle of Plattsburg. His stunning victory and his being awarded a Congressional Gold Medal, made him a well known figure in the country. Naming the town in his honor speaks to Alexander Macomb’s prominence as well as reflecting the fact that the land in the region was issued as payment to the soldiers who volunteered in the War of 1812.
The Western Illinois Museum is located at 201 South Lafayette Street, one block south of Macomb’s Courthouse Square. For more information, contact the Western Illinois Museum at 309.837.2750 or email@example.com.