BRIMFIELD, Ill (WMBD) — Jubilee College is one of the oldest educational institutions in Illinois after being founded in 1839 by Bishop Philander Chase.
The college closed in 1862 and the building has since become a historical site.
Matthew Mittelstaedt, with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, said due to funding issues the historical site had to close its doors a decade ago.
“It’s been closed for about 10 years and we’re excited to get it back open again for tours on a regular basis,” Mittelstaedt said.
On Saturday, the site officially re-opened for the public.
One of the main purposes of the college was to serve as training grounds for episcopal missionaries but Chase had more in mind.
“Because that’s not going to sustain the school in its entirety, he really operates his school for everyone,” Mittelstaedt said. “There’s a college prep school here, there’s a college proper and they also had a finishing school for girls as well.”
Visitors can see the chapel, college office, and dormitory during a tour.
Mittelstaedt said it is important to have historical facilities available to ensure Illinois’ past isn’t forgotten.
“Illinois has such a rich history. The cultural legacy that has been left for us and for us to look at what people have done in the past and understand how that can lead us forward in the future is really an exciting thing,” said Mittelstaedt.
The Jubilee College Historical Site is now open Tuesday through Saturday from 9 am to 5 pm.