On Saturday, September 7, the DeKalb County History Center is hosting a free presentation on the Women’s Ambulance Safety Patrol. The presentation will begin at 1:00 pm and will be located at the museum’s new location, 1730 N Main Street in Sycamore.
Last year, historians at the Veteran’s Memorial Hall & Museum opened a scrapbook in their archives and unearthed a Rockford first! On April 3, 1940, the women of Rockford founded W.A.S.P., the Women’s Ambulance Safety Patrol. Within months, this effort spread to 15 states & was the first women’s ambulance program in the country. Of course, when the W.A.S.P. program initially grew, they established a patrol in DeKalb and Sycamore!
There is literally nothing about these women online, but after several months of intense research, this story & pictures are ready to be showcased. Come & see if you’re related to any of the 200+ women involved in this effort! This story is a living legacy & is expected to grow as more information comes to light. Step back into a 1940’s time capsule of DeKalb County history!
The program was researched by & will be presented by Mary Rose Fillip, a volunteer at the Veteran’s Memorial Hall & Museum. Mary Rose moved to Rockford in 2013. She enjoys local history & believes Rockford is a wonderful place to call home.
This is a free presentation for anyone interested, though donations are welcome. For more information, call 815-895-5762 or visit dekalbcountyhistory.org. Fees to visit the exhibit “Crossroads: Changes in Rural America” apply. The exhibit is free for children and members and $5 for adults. The current display features many fascinating objects from the local fairs and festivals in the county, including a guitar signed by country-rock superstar Unkle Kracker. Visit the museum’s Facebook page for information on other upcoming events.