Dick Wales and Marie Spinsby

Dick Wales and Marie Spinsby with some of Marie’s scrapbooks.

The LeClaire Community Library is host to an exciting new series of local history talks dedicated to 20th century LeClaire. These talks — or, rather, community dialogues — kicked off in November with a two-part session focusing on Cody Road and the business district.

These talks have been hosted by local “history keepers,” Dick Wales and Marie Spinsby, who are long-time residents of LeClaire. The pair loves sharing their cumulative knowledge of our community through riveting conversation and photographs chronicling their time spent here.

Spinsby — having clipped nearly every article that so much as mentions LeClaire over the past 70 years — is the proud owner of 30 scrapbooks that chronicle local history in a very tangible way. She has generously allowed the library to put one on display for the public, and patrons repeatedly find themselves flipping through the album for nearly an hour without even noticing the time pass. When she is ready to give them up for good, the archive at the Buffalo Bill Museum will be the lucky recipient.

January’s talk will feature Spinsby presenting on the construction of the I-80 bridge. Having grown up on Canal Shore Drive, she had a front row seat to that project and compiled more than 60 slides dedicated to its progress. Join us Jan. 11 at 6:30 p.m. for a fun personal way to learn about local history!

Next month’s program, Feb. 8 at 6:30 p.m., will focus on the evolution of the LeClaire Levee and the history of Martin Tile.

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