© 2016 - 2019 Friends of the D.D. Collins House

Some interesting facts you may or may not be aware of regarding the Collins House and those associated with it…

Facts ~

1890 ~

Did You Know?

ongoing research by Lois W. Metzger

The D.W. Jones Candy and Confectionary Store was located on the north side of Main Street one door east of Center Street, also known as 105 East Main.

Village:  The first meetings of the Village of Collinsville were held in the house in 1850 when Daniel Dove Collins was president of the Village Board.

If you look very carefully, you can see the columns of the Collins House and chimney, as well as the steps leading up to the porch.

The house was located at the back of the corner lot in what was developing into the business district.

621 West Main:  As businesses grew in the uptown area of Collinsville, the Collins House was moved to 621 West Main Street, circa 1890.

Once the house was moved from East Main to West Main Street, the State Bank was built on the site. The minutes from Village Board meeting can be found in the Collinsville Historical Museum.

The bricks used in the sidewalk the front of the Collins House when it was located at 621 West Main Street were originally used on the roadway when there was a streetcar operating in Collinsville, circa 1891 - 1905. Many of those bricks are now being used at the newest location of the Collins House.

Streetcars provided a new mode of transportation in Collinsville.

Local Business:  Curl Up and Dye was the name of the beauty shop that was in the store front that was attached to the D.D. Collins House. Prior to that, a small grocery store was operated by the Bonns, who lived in the Collins House for more than 50 years.

The D.D. Collins House was originally located on East Main Street where Burt’s Chuck Wagon is now located.

The storefront that most recently housed the Curl Up and Dye beauty shop was added on and built in 1905.

 

That addition was removed in early 2000’s with grant money that had been applied for and obtained by the Collinsville Historic Preservation Commission.

Anderson Heritage:  John Anderson was the father of Elizabeth Collins, the wife of Daniel Dove Collins. John was born in Hoboken, New Jersey in 1794 and was a drummer boy in the War of 1812.

 

In 1820 John Anderson moved west and located in the Marine settlement; and in 1822 he married Susan Creamer in Kaskaskia. He and Susan had 12 children.

The subdivision known as Anderson Acres on the west end of Collinsville off West Main Street was named for the family of Elizabeth Collins’ brother, John Philip Anderson. The stately house that sat at the top of the hill in Anderson Acres on Westmoreland Drive was home to L.E. Morris, his wife and family. The house was destroyed by fire in 1964.

 

The subdivision known as Collinwood Addition was Elizabeth Anderson Collins’ father’s (John Anderson) farm.

 

The small lake on Route 159 near Country Lane is called Anderson Pond. Susan Creamer’s father was Phillip Creamer, grandfather of Elizabeth Anderson Collins.

 

Gunsmith of the West:  Creamer was a gunsmith by trade and was known as the “Gunsmith of the West.” Creamer is credited with supplying arms and gunsmithing services for the Illinois Indian Agency from 1847 to 1822. A gun made by him is on display at the Hermitage, the home of Andrew Jackson in Nashville, Tennessee.

Collinsville Plank Road:  Daniel Dove Collins owned and operated the Collinsville Plank Road Company, which ran from near Edwardsville to East St. Louis. The Collinsville Plank Road as it ran through Collinsville had one toll gate near the intersection of Route 159 and I-55/ 70; another toll gate was located at the top of Bluff Hill. There may have been a third toll gate, but research has not yet confirmed that. In 1888 the Collinsville Plank Road was abandoned and Collinsville roads were back in the mud.

Last Home:  The last home that Daniel Dove Collins built was located where the V.F.W. built in 1946 now stands on Vandalia Street across from the old Collinsville High School (currently the Navigation Church).

 

The barn located on the property where D.D. Collins built his last house was used as the band building by Collinsville High School for many years.

 

Florine Henson Bowker: The granddaughter of D.D. and Elizabeth Collins was Florine Henson Bowker, who operated a rooming house called Cedar Lawn, circa 1930s, (something like today’s bed and breakfast inns). Florine served fried chicken dinners at her establishment at a price of 85¢. Florine Henson Bowker was married to Walter Bowker, who owned a wallpaper and paint store.

 

Florine was a daughter of Adelia (Patty) Collins, who died December 30, 1902, and Mark Henson. Florine was a teacher/ sponsor of the Baracca Class at the First Presbyterian Church located at the intersection of Route 159 and Church Street.

Baracca Hall:  The old church was called Baracca Hall.  A gymnasium was located in the basement; the first floor was a stage with chairs for an audience; the second floor was a reception hall with a kitchen and fireplace.

 

The Baracca Class was a group of young men. In 1913 when the editor of the local newspaper, The Advertiser, went on vacation, these young men operated the newspaper as a fundraiser for the Baracca Class.

Baracca Hall:  The old church was called Baracca Hall.  A gymnasium was located in the basement; the first floor was a stage with chairs for an audience; the second floor was a reception hall with a kitchen and fireplace.

 

The Baracca Class was a group of young men. In 1913 when the editor of the local newspaper, The Advertiser, went on vacation, these young men operated the newspaper as a fundraiser for the Baracca Class.

Mark Henson:  Mark Henson was the teacher at the school in Kinderhook Station (in the Granite City area). In 1892 Henson became the land purchasing agent for the Niederinghaus Brothers, hired to acquire the property to build a city and house a plant to make granite ware.

 

The town became known as Granite City; the plant eventually became Granite City Steel.

 

Mark Henson became the Madison County Superintendent of Schools; he later became the second mayor of Granite City; he also became the president of banks in both Granite City and Madison, Illinois. After his wife Patty died, Mark Henson remarried (Dr. Wadsworth’s daughter) and made his home at Cedar Lawn.

Flora Elizabeth Collins:  Flora Elizabeth Collins (born June, 1847/ died April, 1928) was the oldest child of Daniel Dove and Elizabeth Collins; Flora was the mother of Florine.

 

Flora Elizabeth Collins married Louis Ferdinand Eck at St. Peter and Paul Catholic Church on June 20, 1867.

Irving Dilliard:  Irving Dilliard purchased the D.D. Collins House in April, 1998; the Collinsville City Council voted unanimously to accept the house from Mr. Dilliard in August, 1998.

 

The contract contained a few restrictions, one being that the City of Collinsville and the Collinsville Historic Preservation Commission work together on the building.

 

The contract also specified that no part of the original structure of the house be razed or demolished, and that the use of the house and property be consistent with its preservation.

Irving Dilliard on December 5, 1998

Legends of the Flood:  Legend has it that the main beam in the D.D. Collins House came from a riverboat that was marooned at the foot of the bluffs area when the flood waters of the Flood of 1844 receded.

 

The joints at the eaves in the attic are mortis and tenon joints.

 

The strips of metal that are visible on the hardwood floors inside the D.D. Collins House were cut from advertising plates used for newspaper ads; the advertising strips were obtained from the Martha Manning Dress Factory. The metal strips were used to prevent cold air from coming in between the floor boards.

Phone:  Call Lavadna at 618.420.0288           
Email:  artloft@charter.net