The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

Cooks Honored For 40 Years Of Service

by: Bill Allaman

On the beautiful fall afternoon of Sunday, September 25th, a group of community members, family, friends, and museum supporters gathered in front of the Henderson County Museum in Raritan to honor Jim and Doris Cook on their 40 years of service at the museum.

Bill Allaman, president of the Henderson County Historical Society, presented them with a token of appreciation for their service to the Museum for the past 40 years and had these words to say.

 This weekend we have been celebrating the 40th anniversary of our museum. It all began back during 1976, the bicentennial year of our country when a group of interested citizens decided that Henderson County needed to preserve local history for future generations.

This school building (Raritan School) was closed in 1973 and it became our first building to store artifacts in 1976. Jim Cook was one of the first to get the building off the ground and display the items people were willing to loan or give to the museum. He was the original  American Picker which is a TV show highlighting people s treasures.

Currently we have 2,500 items on display. Our 5 buildings encompass 12,000 square feet. We ve come a long way since the first item was placed for public viewing.

Throughout all of this, Jim has had a constant companion of 63 years, Doris, his wife. She has become just as active as Jim in caring for the museum. A few years ago when the school roof was being replaced, she brought food to the workers as they ate under the shade tree.

I'm sure she has done many other things behind the scenes that I am not aware of. Jim, you know she is a treasure. The Burlington Hawkeye featured Jim and Doris in their July 31 Sunday edition.

You are loved and represent the best that Henderson County has to offer. .

And so, The Historical Society and I say  Thank you Jim and Doris.

Jim shared that we have so much history in Henderson County. He recalled the first item put on display. He mentioned the museum helps make history real to young people. Jim also acknowledged the many people that have contributed their time and family items toward the museum.

Contact Jim and Doris at 309-746-6103 if you are interested in contributing monetarily, your time, or have a group that would like a tour of the museum.

The museum is open by appointment as well as several times during the year; or many times you can simply catch them at the museum and get a personal tour.

Jim and Doris's 40 years of service to the Henderson County Museum are very much appreciated.