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July 2016, Vasa Star

Hello Vasa Members,

Summer traffic has picked up here at the Vasa National Archives. Last year at this time we had a total of 103 visitors and this year we’ve had 238! It has been a very successful summer and we’re looking forward to continued success.

On June 7, we had Hans and Birgitta from Sweden performing Swedish songs in the Archive’s basement. The basement had recently been decorated with various artworks and images from the collection. Special thanks to Judy Middleton for volunteering her time to help clean and hang the images. We had 30 people come to see the music. Some of the audience members traveled an hour for the performance.

At Midsommar, Bishop Hill featured music in the Village Park most of the day. Local Lodge #683 hosted dancing around the Maypole and a light refreshments that evening. Here at the Archives, we offered a cookies and Kool-Aid fika at our make-and-take clay sculpture station. My parents made and hung a garland on the sign out front while they visited during Midsommar. 33 people visited us that day.

Our next event is Kubb games in the side yard of the archives on August 13-14. That weekend features a Nordic Market in town complete with a Viking encampment in the park. We have a few people lined up to play and teach the game to passers-by. If you are available to play, we’d love to have you here that weekend as well.

Sten and Nancy Hult have been tremendous help when they come to visit. They have been pulling weeds, cleaning out the storage shed, greeting visitors, and doing just about anything they can while in town. We always look forward to their visits.

With our collections, we have finally finished the inventory of the items stored in the basement. This inventory has been added to the database. We have now begun working on collections stored in the attic. A preliminary look at the boxes in the attic reveals that most of the contents are in fairly decent shape with no serious bug or mold problems.

A new, larger dehumidifier was purchased to get the humidity lowered into a mold-free range. We will be improving storage for paintings and framed oversized images soon. We had some minor issues with the phone lines following a storm in mid-June. It took a few days for us to discover the problem. It has been fixed and we apologize if we missed your call during that time period.

The Vasa National Archives webpage has been updated and redesigned. We still have a few pages under construction and hope to have them finished soon. We hope you all can take a moment to visit and please send any feedback about the page. The webpage is We are hoping to increase our friends on Facebook. If you are on Facebook, look up the Vasa National Archives and click “Like”.

If you have any questions about the collections or the archives, feel free to contact me at or at 309-927-3898.

In Truth and Unity,

Kathy Cuff, CA

Vasa Archivist

Dancing around the Maypole outside the Colony School

Visitors enjoying a fika and the Make-and-Take Clay station

Young visitors enjoying our Make-and-Take clay station

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