This is a mural painted in 1954 by John Heller. It shows Vandalia
as it looked while it was the Capital of Illinois.
In the early years the Madonna of the Trail was set directly in front
of the Capitol building on Gallitin Street.
Below is a picture of the Capitol at that time.
Later the Madonna was moved to the southwest corner of the yard.
Old State Capitol- Vandalia, Illinois
1909 picture of the Courthouse.
In connection with the struggle over the removal of the Capital, it
is recorded that Abraham Lincoln
jumped out of the window at the southwest corner of the Legislative Chamber, in order to defeat
a quorum, and thus prevented the continuation of the Capital of Illinois in Vandalia for another twenty years.
An early picture of Gallatin Street looking east.
Another view of the big city! Looking east on Gallatin Street.
This is a picture of the Diekmann Hotel as seen in 1911. It was at the southeast corner of 5th and Gallatin Streets.
This is a 1912 street scene looking east down Gallatin.
This is Central High School in 1911. It was used as the
grade and Jr. High when I attended. Today it is an apartment building.
My grandmother lives in the room where I attended 4th grade.
Gallatin St. looking west. The capitol building is on the right side, out of view in this picture taken in the 1920's or 1930's.
The previous 2 pictures show the corner of Gallatin and 4th Streets
in downtown Vandalia.
The Hotel Evans is sitting on the corner. These were taken in the 1940's.
An overhead picture of the capitol building, probably taken in the late
This is the old Kaskaskia River Bridge that was completed in 1921. It
was erected to take the place
of a suspension bridge. The original bridge constructed at this point was a wooden covered bridge.
The original was built at the point where the Cumberland Trail or Old National Road terminated
on the east side of Vandalia.
When I was little, we called it the Singing Bridge because of the sound that it made when the car drove over it.
We always went over the bridge on our way to Brownstown to visit my Grandma and Grandpa Smith- Olive and Earl.