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The Staley Museum in Decatur, Illinois

The Staley Museum opened its doors to the public during the summer of 2015. We are excited be a full-fledged member of our community. Here you will find updates and news about the museum and exciting events going on.

The Staley Museum and this web site are both works in progress. We encourage visitors to continue to check back with us and see how we are progressing. We would also like to encourage visitors to the site to share any stories or information they may have regarding Staley history.

Photos, documents, articles and memorabilia are all welcome and appreciated.  Anyone wishing to make a contribution to the Staley museum may contact us through via the Artifact Donation Form found on this site. Also, for anyone in our area who wishes to be a Volunteer at the museum and offer their time and/or expertise, please go to the Volunteer Form and fill out your information so that we may contact you personally. We invite you to Contact Us.

News & Happenings

Visit the Staley Museum

The Staley Museum is open year-round
Tuesday – Saturday: 1:00 – 4:00 pm
Last Sunday of the month (March – November): 1:00 – 4:00 pm.

Admission
Adults: $3
17 & under: $1

Location
361 N. College Street
Decatur, IL

The Staley Story

A.E. Staley was a big man with big dreams and had the determination to make those dreams a reality.  Although he did not arrive on the scene until the 1900’s, his impact of Decatur was such that he is counted as one of the founding fathers.  The largeness of his dreams and of his civic minded generosity has contributed in major ways to the city we know today.

It was A.E.’s pioneering vision in the area of soy beans, both the cultivation and processing, that gave Decatur the name “Soy Bean Capitol of the World.”

In the period of one decade, 1920-1930, A.E. Staley made significant contributions to the community of Decatur, being the driving force behind the creation of Lake Decatur, the Staley viaduct, the Staley Office Building, and the formation of the Decatur Staleys football club, later to become the Chicago Bears.

The story of A.E. Staley is one in which the city of Decatur has the right to feel great pride. It is a story which forms a major part in the industrial and agricultural history of central Illinois. We look forward to sharing that pride and history as we work toward the opening of the Staley Museum.

The Staley Office Building: Inaugurated in April, 1930
Also known as “The Castle in the Cornfields”
Photo courtesy of the Hieronymus Mueller Museum

Staley office building

The Staley Office Building: Inaugurated in April, 1930
Also known as “The Castle in the Cornfields”
Photo courtesy of the Hieronymus Mueller Museum

Staley Museum Latest News

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Saturday September 4th

We will be closed today, in observance of Labor Day.
Thank you for supporting the museum; we hope you have a wonderful weekend!
... See MoreSee Less

We will be closed today, in observance of Labor Day. 
Thank you for supporting the museum; we hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Comment on Facebook

Looks so beautiful

Thursday September 2nd

❗️Important Announcement ❗️

We are sad to announce that due to the rising number of COVID cases and the resulting mask mandate, the venues for Taste of History have come to the decision to cancel the event. 

If you purchased tickets and have any questions or concerns, please contact the Hieronymus Mueller Museum.

This event is very near and dear to our hearts and we look forward to holding it again in the future. Thank you for your support.
... See MoreSee Less

❗️Important Announcement ❗️

We are sad to announce that due to the rising number of COVID cases and the resulting mask mandate, the venues for Taste of History have come to the decision to cancel the event. 

If you purchased tickets and have any questions or concerns, please contact the Hieronymus Mueller Museum. 

This event is very near and dear to our hearts and we look forward to holding it again in the future. Thank you for your support.
Sunday August 15th

Photos from Spencer Films's post ... See MoreSee Less

Saturday August 14th

How exciting! Visible in these photos is some of the beautiful interior design of the executive suit in the office building. ... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

Jason Doyle on the hot seat.

Julie, When can we expect the movie to be out? Can't wait to see it.

Tuesday August 3rd

Tickets are on sale now! ... See MoreSee Less

Tickets are on sale now!
Tuesday July 27th

A.E. Staley at his retirement home in Miami, in 1939, a year before his death at age 73.

Photo: The Staley Museum
... See MoreSee Less

Thursday July 15th

Taste of History 2021! 🍾 🥂 🍾
Don't miss out on this exciting event!
Tickets go on sale August 1st!
... See MoreSee Less

Taste of History 2021! 🍾 🥂 🍾
Dont miss out on this exciting event! 
Tickets go on sale August 1st!
Thursday July 8th

Honored to have Illinois State Senator Doris Turner visit the museum today! She was given a tour by museum board president, Julie Staley, and museum director Laura Jahr. ... See MoreSee Less

Honored to have Illinois State Senator Doris Turner visit the museum today!   She was given a tour by museum board president, Julie Staley, and museum director Laura Jahr.Image attachment
Friday July 2nd

*SATURDAY July 3rd CLOSED*
The museum will be closed tomorrow, Saturday July 3rd, in observance of the July 4th Holiday.
The Staley Museum wishes everyone a safe and happy holiday weekend.
... See MoreSee Less

*SATURDAY July 3rd CLOSED* 
The museum will be closed tomorrow, Saturday July 3rd, in observance of the July 4th Holiday. 
The Staley Museum wishes everyone a safe and happy holiday weekend.
Saturday June 26th

🚫CANCELLED🚫
Due to inclement weather the Garden Party has been cancelled. However, the museum will still be open from 1pm to 4pm with admission waived. We have plenty of cookies and lemonade, though, so stop by and have a look at the museum while enjoying a snack!
... See MoreSee Less

🚫CANCELLED🚫 
Due to inclement weather the Garden Party has been cancelled. However, the museum will still be open from 1pm to 4pm with admission waived. We have plenty of cookies and lemonade, though, so stop by and have a look at the museum while enjoying a snack!
Saturday June 12th

Love gardening? The University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign's Master Gardeners will be on hand at our Garden Party this June 26th from 1pm to 4pm. Come out and enjoy the garden with some tasty refreshments, then cool off inside the museum! ... See MoreSee Less

Love gardening? The University of Illinois Urbana-Champaigns Master Gardeners will be on hand at our Garden Party this June 26th from 1pm to 4pm. Come out and enjoy the garden with some tasty refreshments, then cool off inside the museum!Image attachmentImage attachment

Comment on Facebook

Now I see this 😩

Mr Staley loved roses 🌹

Joann Daugherty

Haley

Shannon Suhl don't forget😊

Sounds interesting

View more comments

Tuesday June 8th

Our handicap accessible ramp will be closed this week for maintenance.

We are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.
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Friday June 4th

Be sure to check out this story in the latest issue of Decatur Magazine about our sister museum, the Hieronymus Mueller Museum, and their Mueller-Benz automobile, the first car to drive the streets of Decatur, and was one of only two cars to finish the first American automobile race. #muellermuseum #hieronymusmueller #decatur #decaturhistory #staleymuseum #illinoishistory #historymuseum #enjoyillinois ... See MoreSee Less

Be sure to check out this story in the latest issue of Decatur Magazine about our sister museum, the Hieronymus Mueller Museum, and their Mueller-Benz automobile, the first car to drive the streets of Decatur, and was one of only two cars to finish the first American automobile race.  #muellermuseum #hieronymusmueller #decatur #decaturhistory #staleymuseum #illinoishistory #historymuseum #enjoyillinoisImage attachment
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