The iconic wood and iron water tank that stood atop the Swedish American Museum in Chicago’s Andersonville neighborhood for nearly 90 years was damaged beyond repair in the harsh cold of last winter.
In March it was removed from the roof to the museum parking lot while its future was considered. After expert counsel, it was finally dismantled in November, taking care to save as many of its venerable timbers as possible. The wood will have new life in a museum exhibit and in memorabilia that will available to fans of the beloved icon. And yes, the blue and yellow flag will return to the rooftop — this time as a fiberglass replica of the original water tank — where it’s been loved by many in a neighborhood that was once home to a large number of Swedish immigrants.
Now The Swedish American Museum, along with supporters and community partners, is working to raise the $150,000 needed to recreate the neighborhood landmark. The museum is grateful for the generosity of life trustees Ulla and Bertil Brunk, the Edith Marie Appleton Foundation by trustee Albert Goodman, and the Andersonville Chamber of Commerce, who started the Water Tower Fund with major gifts totaling more than $70,000.
And now, in the spirit of Christmas giving, donations big and small will have double the impact: Supporters and life trustees, Bo and Anita Hedfors, will match every gift made by December 31 to a total of $15,000.
Individuals and organizations that want to donate to the fund can visit the museum or Thank you for your generosity, and God Jul och Gott Nytt År!
By Amanda Robison