Welcome!

Perhaps you were born and raised in Crystal Lake.  Or perhaps you've recently moved here.  Maybe your ancestors helped settle the area.  Regardless, we welcome you to The Crystal Lake Historical Society website, and hope you will learn more about our Society and our community's rich history.


Membership Support

One of the most valuable benefits of membership is the Society newsletter, The Crystal Times, which is published quarterly.  An online version of Index to Names found in the newsletter is available on the Local History / Research Resources page.  A limited number of back issues to The Crystal Times are available for sale.  Please email the Society for specific requests. 

Memberships in the Society expire on December 31st of each calendar year.  Memberships received during the fourth quarter extend through the following year.   Click here to  learn more about member benefits, rates, and payment options. 

Remember, it is through the support of our members that we can continue to preserve our community's history. 

Other Items of Interest on our Website

The Upcoming Events tab has been updated with dates and information about our 2016 programming activities.  Check this tab often as additional information is added.

The Local History tab has also been updated with a new feature called "Lost Crystal Lake".  Learn more about buildings and structures that are no longer standing.  This is an ongoing project, so check this tab often for new additions/updates. 

Another update to Local History is the addition of the Crystal Lake American Legion page featuring a history of the William Chandler Peterson Post #171. 

Also on the Local History tab, we've added an American Terra Cotta & Ceramic Co. page which includes information about the factory.  As a special treat, copies of the company's magazine, "Common Clay" have been added. 

A  Post Office History page and Telephone History page have also been added.  Vintage Crystal Lake phone books are being uploaded to view.  

 Plan a Visit

The Crystal Lake Historical Society is located at the Colonel Palmer House, which is at the intersection of Illinois Route 176 and Terra Cotta Road in Crystal Lake. 

2016 (Winter/Spring) hours of operation:

Tuesdays (11AM - 4PM)

Thursdays (11AM - 4PM)

Fridays (11AM - 4PM)

1st Saturday of each month (11AM - 4PM) - includes special programming

If you are planning to do research, it is best to call ahead to make certain someone will be available to assist you.

Mary Ott is the Site Coordinator at Colonel Palmer House.  Email her at: palmerhouse@crystallakeparks.org or call 815/455-1151