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Loper Family Collection

 Collection — Box: Loper Collection
Identifier: AV-01-05-02


The collection includes a variety of photographs and newspaper clippings relating to Harry T. Loper. Most of the collection includes information on Loper’s involvement in the 1908 Springfield Race Riots and the Lyric/Tivoli Theatre. The collection also includes newspaper clippings of the Herrin, Illinois riot and about Loper’s 1907 Ford Model K Roadster.


  • 1907 - 2010

Biographical / Historical

Harry T. Loper (1860-1948), married Mary. J. Power in 1886 until her death in 1940. He enlisted in the National Guard and served from 1888-1916, where he rose up the ranks to Major. Loper started working at the “Old French Restaurant” in 1883 and later owned a leading Springfield restaurant at 223 S. Fifth Street. In 1908 Loper assisted the Sangamon County sheriff in moving two African American prisoners from the jail before they could be lynched by a mob. The mob turned it’s angry on the City of Springfield after it was discovered the prisoners were gone and the violence that ensued became known at the Springfield Race Riot of 1908. In 1908, after his resturant had been trashed by rioters, Loper opened the Lyric Theatre.


.2 Linear Feet (1/2 MS Box)

Language of Materials


Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated by Lynda Lee Loper Hanson, 2008-01-15
Klintworth, Megan
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Audiovisual Collection Repository

112 North Sixth Street
Springfield IL 62701 US
(217) 785-7955