Calumet Heritage Partnership

To identify, preserve and reclaim the natural, historical and recreational heritage

of the Calumet region of Illinois and Indiana

13300 S. Baltimore, Chicago, Illinois 60633      (773) 646-0436

There will be no monthly meeting of the Calumet Heritage Partnership in October. The next meeting is scheduled for Thursday, November 20, in the Suzanne G. Long Local History Room at the Hammond Public Library, Hammond, Indiana.

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EXTRA! EXTRA! CHP MOVES BLAST FURNACE BELL TO NEW HOME: On October 11, 2008, the day of the annual Pullman House Walk, a new home was made for the Acme Blast Furnace Large Bell. Twenty-six tons of steelmaking history now sits to the south of the newly restored Clock Tower and Administration Building along with its companion Small Bell and an Ingot Pattern Mould. These large pieces of equipment join the Acme collection as the cornerstone of CHP’s effort to develop an industrial heritage collection.

Moving the bell was a story in itself. It was donated by Simon Beemsterboer after the demolition of the blast furnace and the move was funded with a generous donation by Frank Beberdick. Alderman John Pope facilitated the permitting process for this outsized piece of equipment. Dennis Schrage of U.S. Machinery Movers oversaw the move and trucker Ken Fisher of FEI of Portage, Indiana hauled the bell the five miles down city streets to Pullman on a twenty-wheeled lowboy trailer. Rigger Matt and crane operators Dan and Steve lifted the bell from the trailer after it reached its destination high enough for the truck to drive off. While it hung suspended in the air for a few minutes, CHP members Kate Corcoran, Rod Sellers, Mike Wagenbach, Mark Bouman and Frank and Ingrid Beberdick took a cautious peek underneath, and then the bell was lowered, and will not likely be nudged one way or the other for quite a while.

Rod and Kate chronicled the move with their cameras. Rod’s photos may be found at . A couple of Kate’s are found on the reverse of this newsletter.

CALUMET HERITAGE CONFERENCE: Plenty of space is available at the ninth annual Calumet Heritage Conference, to be held on Saturday, October 18, 2008, at Indiana University Northwest in Gary. The conference theme is “Calumet Crossroads: Changes and Challenges in Regional Transportation.” It observes the centennial of the beginning of rail operations on the South Shore railroad across northwest Indiana and rolls that into a broader discussion of transportation pasts and futures in the region. A featured activity is the afternoon field trip led by Cynthia Ogorek, author of The Lincoln Highway Around Chicago (Arcadia, 2008). The road Cynthia will show us is the nation’s first posted transcontinental highway. For conference information, check the website: or call Mark Bouman at 773 995 2187.

“ARTISTS AND PHOTOGRAPHERS – FOR NATURAL INSPIRATION TRY THE CALUMET REGION”: That’s the title of an exhibit now on view at the Southeast Chicago Historical Museum in Calumet Park, on Thursdays through October from 1 to 4 and on Saturday, October 25, from 11 to 4. The museum features the work of local artists and photographers Joseph Mulac, Rod Sellers, Gloria Novak and 100th Street muralist Noel Morales.

Trucker Ken Fisher pulls onto the Pullman site with Large Blast Furnace bell in tow, followed by Dennis Schrage of US Machinery Movers.
Two cranes lift the bell while the truck pulls away.

Large bell, small bell, and ingot pattern mould in place in front of 1881 Pullman clock tower and administration building.