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The First Community Christmas Tree

An evergreen tree in front of the Downers Grove train station has become an official village holiday tradition that goes back 102 years. The Downers Grove Reporter Newspaper explained in several articles how this tradition started.

In 1918, as a way to do something to show appreciation for the many from the village who fought in the First World War, the community tree was proposed. In early December a committee called the Downers Grove Christmas Association met in the real estate office of Mr. Haller to make plans. A tree would be put up by the Congregational Church on Curtiss Street across from the library so all could see it. After asking for a tree to be provided by someone in the village, Walter Scott Bryan (the caretaker of the Marshall Field Estate) donated an evergreen tree worth about $30.00.

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We are dedicated to the history and heritage of Downers Grove, Illinois

The Downers Grove Historical Society is an independent, non-profit volunteer organization which was incorporated in 1968. We are dedicated to keeping history alive for future generations by preserving and promoting the heritage of Downers Grove. We seek to foster an understanding, awareness, and appreciation of our town's history and architecture through education, community programs, publications, and acknowledgement of historic sites. We rely solely on public support to continue these efforts.

We are dedicated to the history and heritage of Downers Grove, Illinois

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