Col. William Augustus Ray organized the 40th Wisconsin Regiment at Camp Randall, Madison and left for Memphis on June 14, 1864, where they reinforced the Union Army following the Second Battle of Memphis. Col. Ray became President of the Calumet State Bank, the first founded in Blue Island.
When the Colonel died in 1895 his widow sold the home to Charles Eidam. Eidam had moved to Blue Island in 1857, opening a shoe shop at the southwest corner of Western and Vermont in the home once owned by Germanicus Cooley. Eidam served two years as a Village Trustee and was an active member of the Blue Island Leiderkranz, a popular German singing society.
continue the tour –> 17. Herman Nickel House