A part of Peoria's history needs your help

By WEEK Reporter

July 6, 2014 Updated Jul 7, 2014 at 10:49 AM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- The oldest standing single-family home in Peoria needs a little help.

The John C. Flanagan house was built on Peoria's East Bluff in 1837

The Peoria Historical Society has owned the house since 1962 and has since turned it into a museum.

But in order to preserve all of the paintings and items inside, the house needs an air conditioning unit.

A curator said everything in the home has been effected by the heat and humidity to some degree. And adds that it will only get worse over time.

"We have to repaint. The plaster is effected by it. The paintings, some of the paintings probably need conserved," said the curator for the Peoria Historical Society, Robert Killion. "We haven't had anything that we can say, 'this is huge damage.' It's just a cumulative thing, the longer it goes on the longer damage is accruing on items. So we want to slow all that down."

A new air conditioning unit costs $18,000.

Historical society members found a grant that could cover half that cost, but said they have to raise the other half themselves.