Coffee Pot Lady.

Coffee Pot Lady Unveiled in Illinois

Coffee pot ladies were volunteers, often middle-aged, who greeted troop trains during World War II with sandwiches and large, steel pots of steaming coffee. Long forgotten, these unsung heroines of The Good War have now been honored in Streator, Illinois. The ladies here alone poured coffee for an estimated 1.5 million soldiers and sailors at the Santa Fe Depot.

A campaign for a bronze coffee pot lady statue began here in 1991 and weathered many setbacks, including the death of its initial backer and zero interest from corporate sponsors. But the Streator Woman's Club persisted. Bricks were sold for $25 apiece -- almost a thousand in all -- and another local backer was found who paid for the statue out of his own pocket.

The figure, a life-size bronze on a pedestal, depicts a coffee pot lady pouring hot joe out of a large metal pot for a grateful GI. It was unveiled on November 10.

Streator once called itself the "Glass Container Capital of the World." The local tourism committee now calls it "A Quiet Surprise On The Prairie." Streator is the birthplace of many odd celebrities, including Bob Tattersall, "King of Midget Car Racing," although none of them have statues yet. The coffee pot lady may be just the eye-opener needed to get those other tributes started....


Canteen Monument

N. Illinois St., Streator, IL
I-39 exit 41 onto Hwy 18. East 12 miles to Streator. Hwy 18 turns into Main St.; Canteen Monument is at the Santa Fe Burlington Northern Depot a block north of Main on N. Illinois.
Save to My Sights

Latest from Trunkations, the Blog

    More Blog

    February 29, 2020

    My Sights

    My Sights

    Create and Save Your Own Crazy Road Trip!

    Try My Sights

    Roadside America app
    Roadside Presidents app

    Sight of the Week

    Sight of the Week

    Blackie, Horse That Never Moved, Tiburon, California (Feb 24-Mar 1, 2020)

    SotW Archive

    USA and Canada Tips and Stories

    More Sightings

    Sightings. Arrives without warning. Leaves no burn marks. A free newsletter from Subscribe now! Hotel & Motel Finder

    Special rates for hotels.

    Book Now