ELLIS GROVE — Dismayed by the loss of a historic structure, two groups are raising money to rebuild a 1940s picnic shelter that was destroyed by a fire Wednesday at the Fort Kaskaskia State Historic Site.
The Randolph County Historical Society and Save Illinois History are accepting contributions to help pay for the work.
The picnic pavilion was built in 1942 in a joint effort by the state and the federal Works Progress Administration. It stood on a bluff offering a magnificent view of the confluence of the Mississippi and Kaskaskia rivers, as well as the site of Old Kaskaskia, the state's first capital.
Donations can be made to "Rebuild Fort Kaskaskia Shelter Fund" and sent to the Buena Vista National Bank, 1309 Swanwick Street, Chester, IL, 62233. In addition, donations can be made online at www.saveillinoishistory.com.