630-406-5274 | 155 Houston Street, Batavia, Illinois 60510
Visit the Batavia Depot Museum
Gustafson Research Center

Gustafson Research Center

Evening View

Evening View

Challenge Company Memo Form

Challenge Company Memo Form

Batavia Depot Museum Office Machines

Office Machines

Windmill Samples

Little Town Display

Lincoln Room


In the spring of 1998, a long-range planning committee was appointed by the Historical Society’s Board of Directors to investigate space requirements and solutions. The committee recognized that one of the greatest needs was a place in which the large collection of historical documents that the society has collected could be stored and made accessible to researchers.

Funding from the following agencies supported the completion of the addition to house the new research center: Department of Natural Resources Capital Project Grant, Batavia Historical Society, Batavia Park District and the Kane County Victoria Riverboat Fund. The research center was dedicated in June 2000.

The name Gustafson Research Center was chosen to honor John Gustafson and his brothers and sisters who were the first to see the vision of a viable historical society and who began gathering artifacts and cataloging them to preserve Batavia’s heritage.


The mission of the Batavia Depot Museum is “Through collecting, preserving, interpreting and exhibiting the history of Batavia, the Batavia Depot Museum memorializes the accomplishments of Batavians while enriching public knowledge and creating leisure and educational opportunities for the community.

The following materials are available for researchers to use to study the history of Batavia or a Batavia family.

The Batavia Historian
The newsletter of the historical society. Issues are available for the years 1960-2000. Indexed

Bethany Lutheran Church Records
(Microfilm) History of Church, Family Information.

Biographical file with over 800 family histories

Books, papers, photographs, and museum displays about Batavia history, including Military, School, Churches, Clubs and Organizations, Businesses and Industries, Bernard Cigrand and Flag Day, Special Events, Athletic Groups, Medical, Miscellaneous Topics

Circuit Court Records for Batavia and Batavia Township 1860-1960. Original. Indexed

City Directories
Assorted years. Earliest is 1857
Batavia City Directory, 1859-60

Civil War Histories
Books and letters from soldiers Family Diaries and Histories, including Newton genalogy and Papers, and others. Miscellaneous family trees.

Fermilab History

Index of 50 scrapbooks.
Miscellaneous newspaper clippings. 1900-1995. Contains many obituaries, wedding announcements, wedding anniversaries, and profiles of servicemen during World War II.

Kane County History, including other county cities

Kane County Census Records
(Federal) -some indexes and all microfilm from 1840 to 1920

Kane County Marriages Indexes 1840-1900

Lincoln, Abraham and Mary Todd assorted materials. Some records of Mary’s stay at Bellevue. Other Bellevue information.

Microfilm of Indexes of Kane County Genealogical Society
These are name indexes of data bases compiled by the KCGS

Microfilm of Illinois Census 1855 and 1865

Probate Records for Batavia and Batavia Township.
1860-1960. Original. Indexed

Railroad History
Books and miscellaneous pamphlets and documents

Structure History Miscellaneous records of business buildings and residences in the city. Some abstracts

Township and City documents Assorted miscellaneous

Telephone Directories City phone directories for various years particularly the 1920s and assorted others

Windmill Herald (Batavia Newspaper)
Microfilm and CD (Indexed) July 1982-August 1998

Windmill History Books, catalogs, advertisements, and miscellaneous information about the big three manufacturers, Appleton Company, Challenge Company, U. S. Wind Engine and Pump Company

Research Center
Scroll to top