Is Old Flagpole from Electric Park? It's a Mystery

Pole was found in area where park once stood but no photos can be found to verify it was part of old resort.

Last week we told readers about what appears to be a flagpole found by volunteers cleaning up the banks of the DuPage River in preparation for .

While pulling all from the woods and water in the area that used to be Plainfield’s old summer resort Electric Park, workers found what appears to be a flagpole tilting from a pile of shattered concrete.

They were about to yank it out and toss it on the junk pile when somebody said, “Wait, that might be a relic from the Electric Park era.” So, instead of scrapping the pole, they set it upright and left it for posterity.

“We mean to work with the historical society on it, but we’re so busy getting ready for the brew fest, nobody’s gotten around to it yet,” said Steve Caton, one of the festival organizers and co-owner of Limestone Brewing Company.

I decided to get a jump on it. I took a picture of the pole over to the Plainfield Historical Museum on Saturday to see if they had any old Electric Park photos from the early 1900s that might show a flag in the same spot as the one the brew crew found.

The pole is on the west bank of the river, south of where Electric Park's auditorium stood (the circle of concrete we see today) and on the southern edge of a small thicket of woods. That’s about where the mammoth grandstand once stood, the historical society ladies told me.

The cabins were on the east side of the river and the public facilities occupied the west.

We spent an enjoyable and informative half-hour or so flipping through photos of Electric Park that took us back in time. The longer we mused at the charming canvas-draped cottages, the ladies’ beautiful – albeit hot-looking - dresses and the crowds of handsome folks flocking to the grandstand for horse shows and concerts, the more we all wished we could go to Electric Park too.

In the pictures, we saw many flags and flagpoles. There were flagpoles on tents, flagpoles on the water slide, flagpoles near the auditorium and – yes, the there were flagpoles in the vicinity of the grandstand, near the one recently found.

But here’s the snag: They all appeared to be rigged to the top of a structure or a tent. We could not locate any flags in that spot waving from poles in the ground.

So, it remains a mystery. If anybody has any clues about the origin of our baffling pole, please let us know.


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