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History Museum / Learn More

Welcome to the Village of Bartlett Museums; the Bartlett History Museum and the Bartlett Depot Museum. Both museums are operated and funded by the Village of Bartlett, Illinois and are committed to the exhibition and education of our community's rich history.

We invite you to visit our museums and participate in the many events each offers. Please click on the links to learn more about each.


Depot Museum / Learn More

Artifact of the Month -- September 2015


More than a century ago, more people owned music boxes than any other form of musical instruments. This mid to late 1800s (1870-1900) music box is known as a Swiss cylinder music box.

The history of music  boxes goes back to the 19th century, when the bulk of music box production was in Switzerland. Music boxes came in various sizes, ranging from pocket size to table top size. The first music boxes were powered by clockwork and produced by artisan watchmakers. This allowed music boxes to be built with strong watchmaking traditions.

This particular music box, produced in Switzerland (ID number 73794), belonged to Louis Schick (1904-1920). Louis was the youngest son of Fred and Sophie Schick, who were the second generation owners of the Schick farm off of Schick Road.

This music box played music by way of a comb, with teeth cut out and tuned to reproduce musical notes, which hit the cylinder pins, moving the comb in a upward direction and producing the melodies. To play different songs the cylinder moves from left to right; this particular music box was able to play six songs.

Although widely popular, by 1910 music boxes started being replaced by the phonograph. 



Museum Donations

picture of potato race ribbon from 1914

Ever wonder how the Bartlett History Museum acquires all of the artifacts, images, textiles and more for its collection? These items come from past and present residents, family descendants, and generous individuals who donate them. The Museum is always seeking objects and photos that capture a moment in Bartlett's rich past. The archives contains hundreds of items, ranging in size from a button off the first Bartlett Girl Scout uniform to a six-foot nail bin from the old Schultz Hardware. Do you have Bartlett items you would like to donate to the Museum's archives? Please contact Pam Rohleder, Director, at 630-837-0800.


The museums are members of the American Association of Museums, Association of State and Local History, Illinois Association of Museums, and the Kane-DuPage Regional Museum Association.

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