Wilbur Blakeslee



Not a lot is known about Wilbur Blakeslee who was born in 1833. He owned a photography studio in Mendota, IL from June 1863 until his death on August 4, 1879.

In 1870, he married Miss Roxy M. Howes who was born on December 11, 1945. To this union there were born three children, George, Edmonds, and Dr. F. E. Blakeslee who had a practice in Earlville.

Wilbur Blakeslee photography studio in Mendota was located across the street from the Passenger House. The Passenger House was a hotel east of the Union Depot Railroad Museum.

The photograph of James Butler “Wild Bill” Hickok below was determined to have been taken at the Blakeslee studio. Wild Bill was in town to visit his mother, who lived in Troy Grove, stayed at the Passenger House and had his picture taken by Blakeslee. This picture was used in crafting the bronze statue that is located in front of the Hume-Carnegie Museum.









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